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Paul Kosower to perform Bach's Six Suites for Cello

RELEASED: Feb. 24, 2010

Paul Kosower
Paul Kosower
Photo copyright © Richard Long

EAU CLAIRE — Paul Kosower, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire professor emeritus of music, will perform three movements from Johann Sebastian Bach's Six Suites for Cello at 2 p.m. March 7 in Phillips Recital Hall of the Haas Fine Arts Center.

The event is free and open to the public.

Kosower will perform Bach's Suite No. 1 in G Major, No. 3 in C Major and No. 5 in C Minor. Those suites are believed to date back to around 1720 when Bach served as a Kapellmeister (director of music for a monarch or nobleman) in Cothen, Germany. The manuscript was written out by Bach's second wife, Anna Magdalena Bach. Each of the suites begins with a prelude, followed by standard dance forms: allemande, courante, sarabande and gigue.

"I chose three of the Six Bach Suites for cello because the music is some of the greatest music ever written, and some of the greatest music ever written for solo cello," he said, noting the difficulty of performing the suites in terms of interpretation, mood and technical elements.

"They encompass many of the technical aspects of the cello and Bach was way ahead of his time musically and technically for the cello."

Kosower will perform the suites on his 1751 cello, which was made the year after Bach died.

"I know that some of the early performances of these suites were most likely performed on my cello, which is part of the Baroque history."

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KJ/RD/DW

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