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The Musical Offering

Duration:
1 hour
First broadcast:
Thursday 02 August 2012

Bach's visit, three years before his death, to Frederick the Great in Potsdam in 1747, was timed tactfully. Prussian troops had withdrawn from Leipzig six months earlier, and Leipzig city council and the Dresden court would have noted that Bach had made the journey as a true ambassador of peace. Frederick the flute-playing monarch offered the composer a theme on which to base a new work, and Bach improvised a piece for the king there and then. After returning home he set to work on several movements based on this royal theme. Donald Macleod looks at the music arising from Bach's visit to Frederick the Great.

Music Played

4 items
  • Image for Johann Sebastian Bach

    Johann Sebastian Bach Musikalisches Opfer BWV.1079

    Performer: Ensemble Sonnerie

    VIRGIN CLASSICS, VC 5 451392

  • Image for Johann Sebastian Bach

    Johann Sebastian Bach Musikalisches Opfer BWV.1079

    Performer: Musica Antiqua Koln

    Deutsche Grammophon, DG469680-2

  • Image for Johann Sebastian Bach

    Johann Sebastian Bach Mass in B minor BWV.232

    Performer: Guy de MEY - Tenor Performer: Klaus MERTENS - Bass Performer: Ton KOOPMAN - Organ Performer: Amsterdam Baroque Choir Performer: Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra

    ERATO, 4509-98478-2

  • Image for Johann Sebastian Bach

    Johann Sebastian Bach Vom Himmel hoch - canonic variations BWV.769 for organ

    Performer: Simon PRESTON - Organ

    Deutsche Grammaphon, DG 427668-2

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