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Christine Schornsheim selects her Rondos and Fantasias from CPE Bach’s Kenner und Liebhaber (‘Connoisseurs and Lovers’), six collections from 1779-1787, a period when, one critic has suggested, ‘Bach was consciously skirting the boundaries of musical intelligibility’. Schornsheim certainly delights in the music’s capricious twists and turns. The A minor Rondo, Wq 56/5, stands out as unusually tragic – this was Bach’s ‘endless lament’ for the death of his son. Schornsheim performs these works on an 1801 tangent piano, arguing that it ‘unifies all the timbres’ of clavichord, harpsichord and fortepiano. The theory is dubious, but the resulting sounds are delectable.

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