Johann Sebastian Bach

Orchestral Suite No. 3 in D major, BWV 1068

    Description by John Keillor

    Johann Sebastian Bach probably wrote his Suite for Orchestra No 3 in D major, BWV 1068 in 1731. This was not the sort of music he normally wrote; it is lighter fare than his normally more rigorous, sacred or fugal fare. Suites for orchestra were also called overtures, and they were an all-purpose form of entertainment, featuring some pretensions of French culture, which was the most sought-after affectation among the royals of Europe in the eighteenth century. The genre was a collection of excerpts from French ballets and operas, and the arrangement of the form was an overture (the beginning of a stage work) followed by a collection of dances. Garden parties, trade fairs, and every other sort of celebration were good spots for these pieces. Bach wrote only four of these works; it was not the sort of thing he did naturally. However, the local groups of players in Leipzig, called Collegium Musicum, required music; he had been appointed its director in 1729, on top of his normal duties at the Thomas School. His political position in Leipzig was usually tenuous because he was frequently petitioning the city council for a better wage, better teaching and conducting conditions, and more money for music in general. For this he probably needed to commit to acts of good faith, and music such this Orchestral Suite in D major would have been exactly what the city council and citizens enjoyed. This work was most likely revived from a similar piece he wrote around 1720 in Cöthen. Its Leipzig premiere probably took place "at the Zimmermann Coffee House in the Cather-Strasse from 8 to 10 on Friday." This unearthed advertisement for the concert features the D major Orchestral Suite. For someone who stood back from the world of light, entertainment music, Bach was good at writing it. This suite uses a rich blend of timbre, featuring oboes, trumpets, timpani, strings, and continuo. Its second movement, Air, (also known as "Air on the G String") centers around one of the most well known melodies he ever wrote. Bach approaches the music with his personal instincts intact, and leans as much toward Italy as much as France in this material. The visceral, propulsive nature of Vivaldi's concertos find their way into all these orchestral suites. BWV 1068 is a total five joyous movements, about 19 minutes in duration.

    Parts/Movements

    1. Overture
    2. Air
    3. Gavotte 1
    4. Gavotte 2
    5. Bourrée
    6. Gigue

    Appears On

    Year Title Label Catalog #
    2018 Accent ACC 24352
    2017 Arcana A 400
    2017 Profil - Edition Günter Hänssler PH 16010
    2017 Naxos 8503293
    2017 Griot Hörbuch Verlag
    2016 Archiv Produktion 0002894795814
    2016 Archiv Produktion 4795384
    2016 Analekta AN 28783
    2016 Warner Classics 554597
    2015 Warner Classics 0825646019311
    2015 Brilliant Classics 95018BR
    2015 Melodiya MELCD 1002301
    2015 Genuin GEN 15333
    2014 Fuga Libera FUG 717
    2014 ICA Classics 5120
    2014 AAM Records AAM 003
    2014 ABC Classics 4811318
    2014 Profil / Profil - Edition Günter Hänssler PH 13053
    2013 Membran 233548
    2013 Erato
    2013 Accent ACC 24279
    2013 Deutsche Harmonia Mundi / DHM Deutsche Harmonia Mundi 88883777232
    2013 Das Alte Werk 2564642238
    2012 Deutsche Grammophon
    2012 Deutsche Grammophon 4783384
    2012 Brilliant Classics 94413
    2012 Alia Vox AVSA 9890
    2012 Smekkleysa SMC 17
    2012 EMI Classics
    2012 Naxos 8501061
    2012 Deutsche Grammophon 002894770055
    2012 Concerto / Zebralution
    2011 Berlin Classics 0300202
    2011 Archiv Produktion
    2011 Archiv Produktion 4779510
    2011 Alpha / Alpha Productions 811
    2011 Alpha Productions 168
    2011 Alpha Productions ALPHA 889
    2011 Haenssler HAEN 94605
    2011 Decca
    2011 Newton Classics 8802086
    2011 Brilliant Classics 93578
    2011 EMI Classics / Warner Classics 5099908517524
    2011 EMI Classics
    2011 EMI Classics 18701
    2011 Ligia 105220
    2011 Warner Classics 632646
    2011 Warner Classics 2564632642
    2011 Decca 458 319-2LC5
    2011 Harmonia Mundi HMC 90211314
    2011 Centaur Records CRC 3083
    2011 Archipel ARPCD0518
    2011 Fuga Libera FUG580
    2011 Thorofon / Zebralution
    2011 Music Rough Guides / World Music Network RGNET 1241 CD
    2011 Bella Musica / Zebralution
    2010 Denon Records
    2010 Deutsche Grammophon
    2010 Denon Records
    2010 Brilliant Classics 94050
    2010 Denon Records
    2010 EMI Classics / Warner Classics 5099945631
    2010 Decca
    2010 Berlin Classics 0300061
    2010 EMI Classics / Warner Classics 5099968857
    2010 Dooload.de / Zebralution
    2010 Philips
    2010 Oehms Classics 771
    2009 Denon Records
    2009 Denon Records
    2009 Denon Records
    2009 Denon Records
    2009 Eurodisc 69219
    2009 BIS 1721/22
    2009 Denon Records
    2009 Denon Records
    2009 EMI Classics
    2009 Seraphim UK
    2009 Denon Records
    2009 Haenssler 98537
    2009 Avie 2171
    2009 Denon Records
    2009 Denon Records
    2009 Audite 21403
    2008 EMI Classics
    2008 EMI Classics 212970
    2008 ZYX Music 10316
    2008 Landscape Classics / Zebralution
    2008 Berlin Classics 0184252
    2008 Accord 465893
    2008 Harmonia Mundi HMX2901578/9
    2008 Brilliant Classics 92721
    2008 Virgin / Virgin Classics 3793472
    2008 Deutsche Grammophon 4762183
    2008 Brilliant Classics 93668
    2008 Thorofon Classics / Zebralution
    2008 Warner Classics / Warner Classics & Jazz 69457
    2008 Brilliant 93160
    2007 EMI Classics
    2007 Philips
    2007 EMI Classics / Warner Classics 5099950095
    2007 Apex
    2007 Berlin Classics 0149092
    2007 EMI Music Distribution
    2007 Supraphon 38342
    2007 Archiv Produktion 4776348
    2007 Cascade Records 2100
    2007 Golden Melodram 40082
    2006 Brilliant Classics 99697
    2006 Brilliant Classics 93102
    2006 Erato
    2006 Tomato 3020
    2006 Virgin 82118
    2006 Warner Classics 4636712
    2006 Archipel 0264
    2006 Warner Classics
    2006 Brilliant 92357
    2005 Deutsche Grammophon
    2005 Virgin Classics
    2005 EMI Classics 86083
    2005 EMI Classics
    2005 BIS 1431
    2005 History 204580
    2005 Berlin Classics 1033
    2005 Oehms 529
    2005 Philips 4756353
    2005 Union Square Music 023
    2004 Delta Distribution 40028
    2004 Haenssler 98978
    2004 Telarc Distribution 60619
    2004 Telarc Distribution 80619
    2004 Brilliant Classics 92391
    2004 Decca
    2004 Brilliant 92417
    2003 Decca 473847
    2003 Analekta 23134
    2003 Bach Guild 1245
    2003 Delta Distribution 40036
    2003 Delta Distribution 40100
    2003 Tahra 495/496
    2003 Deutsche Grammophon
    2003 Deutsche Grammophon 000005602
    2003 Document 205229
    2003 Testament 1217
    2002 Philips 470934
    2002 Archiv Produktion 471656
    2002 Archiv Produktion
    2002 Vox 3608
    2002 Andante 1986
    2002 Vox Music Group 90102
    2002 Testament 1271
    2002 Haenssler 92571
    2002 L'Oiseau-Lyre 433523
    2001 Virgin 561726
    2001 Astree 9958
    2001 T-Rax 51
    2001 Hungaroton Echo Collection 1002
    2001 EMI Music Distribution 74439
    2001 EMI Music Distribution / Warner Classics 7243574274
    2001 Seraphim Classics
    2001 Teldec 81213
    2001 Brilliant 99203
    2001 Music & Arts CD1088
    2001 BCI-Eclipse Distribution 40034
    2001 Teldec 85557
    2001 Tahra 1026
    2000 Sonatina 507
    2000 Naxos 8508005
    2000 Delos 3254
    2000 Orfeo D'Or 537002
    2000 Naxos 8 554609
    2000 Tahra 106-107
    2000 Pearl 103
    1999 Teldec 25705
    1999 Teldec 25704
    1999 Capriccio Records 492542
    1999 Intersound 1755
    1999 Testament 2131
    1999 Harmonia Mundi 2908074/77
    1999 Haenssler 92132
    1999 Teldec 3984-25717-2
    1999 Music & Arts 897
    1999 Deutsche Grammophon 4630132
    1999 Disky 705892
    1999 Urania 125
    1998 Denon Records 17015
    1998 Harmonia Mundi HMC90 1578
    1998 London 458069
    1998 Masterpiece 90012
    1998 Intersound 3843
    1998 Tahra 320/22
    1997 Seraphim UK 69717
    1997 Lifestyle Classics / Intersound 1732
    1997 L'Oiseau-Lyre 452000
    1997 Erato 17868
    1997 Deutsche Grammophon
    1997 Pearl 9263
    1997 Berlin Classics 0090022
    1997 Naxos 8 554043
    1997 Harmonia Mundi 926002
    1997 Philips 456 377-2PB9
    1997 Arte Nova 30490
    1997 Arte Nova 74321 39122-2
    1996 Deutsche Grammophon 453001
    1996 Chesky Records 142
    1996 Harmonia Mundi HMC90 1578/9
    1996 Arts Music 47134
    1996 Hyperion CDD22002
    1996 Intersound 2503
    1996 Intersound 3080
    1995 Decca 448 231-2DEC
    1995 Archiv Produktion 4397802
    1995 Philips 446533
    1995 Curb 78043
    1995 Capriccio Records 10012
    1995 Royal Classics 6481
    1995 Seraphim UK 68517
    1995 Novalis 150097
    1995 ZYX Music 1001
    1995 Novalis 150110
    1994 Deutsche Grammophon 437461
    1994 Teldec 95980
    1994 Supraphon 1875
    1994 Berlin Classics 0030042
    1993 Teldec 92174
    1993 Laserlight 15932
    1993 Music & Arts 708
    1993 Laserlight 14133
    1993 EMI Music Distribution 54654
    1992 Teldec 9031-75859-2
    1992 EMI Music Distribution 67350
    1992 Naxos 550245
    1991 Astree 8727
    1991 Decca
    1991 London 430378
    1991 Hyperion 66502
    1990 Laserlight 15660
    1990 DHM Deutsche Harmonia Mundi 77008
    1990 Laserlight 15860
    1990 Laserlight 35880
    1989 Orfeo 201891
    1988 Archiv Produktion 423492
    1988 Deutsche Grammophon / Universal
    1988 Hungaroton 31018
    1988 Archiv Produktion 4271122
    1986 Archiv Produktion 415671
    1980 Tahra 106
    Deutsche Grammophon 477006
    Brilliant 93102-VOL1
    Brilliant 99701
    Challenge Classics CC72070
    Decca 414505
    Vox 5040
    Intersound 3082
    Deutsche Grammophon 431173
    Teldec 0630-18944-2
    Teldec
    Teldec 97985
    EMI Music Distribution 64047
    Archiv Produktion 9032/4
    Forlane 16535
    ART 003669
    Reader's Digest Music 5943
    Accord 205712
    Vox 7531
    Archiv Produktion 413629
    Decca 417834
    Philips 426462/1
    Brilliant 92391/4
    Brilliant 99701/4
    Brilliant / Brilliant Classics 935784
    Brilliant 93102/4
    Brilliant Classics 93668/4
    MDG MDG 330 1006-2
    EMI Music Distribution 833352
    RCA 60360
    EMI Music Distribution 69879
    Conifer 213
    History 204589
    Denon Records 78965
    Capriccio Records 49258
    Laserlight 14833
    Hyperion 66701
    Virgin 59640
    Erato 45193
    Koch International Classics 7037
    MDG 3411131
    BBC Music Magazine 284
    Compose Records 9145
    Gemini Collection 623
    Winterthur
    Berliner Philharmoniker
    Arts Music 47649
    Cascade Records 2125
    London 430706
    Document 205230
    Brilliant 93160/2
    Reflections / Reflections 27398
    Apollo Music 347
    Deutsche Grammophon 469 106-2GP2
    Masters of Music 3020
    Intersound 3023
    K-Tel / K-Tel Distribution 3807002
    Oreade Music 5282