Chaconne in D Minor
Johann Sebastian Bach (1685–1750)
Arranged by David Whitwell (1937–)
Instrumentation: Concert Band
Notes on the Bach Chaconne
The extraordinary Chaconne exists as the fifth movement in an autograph Partita for solo violin, dating from 1720. The scope of the work, and its homophonic style, has interested later composers, including Busoni, to arrange the music for piano. Like some other early works of Bach, it is often Romantic and chromatic.
Johannes Brahms, in a letter to Clara Schumann in June 1877, said about the Chaconne:
On one stave, for a small instrument, the man writes a whole world of the deepest thoughts and most powerful feelings. If I imagined that I could have created, even conceived the piece, I am quite certain that the excess of excitement and earth-shattering experience would have driven me out of my mind.