Schenck, Johannes - Suonate a Violino e Violone o Cembalo

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Op. 7 (1699) - Vol. I

Instrumentation: v, bc (violone ou clavecin)

Edition: Urtext (2010) - Conducteur & parties sép.

Etat: Neuf

Olaf Tetampel, ed.

The collection Suonate a Violino e Violone o Cimbalo contains two Fantasias, six Sonatinas, two Sinfonias, six Capricci, an Aria and a Prelude.

It is not possible to differentiate precisely between Sinfonias and Sonatinas. After a first movement that is mostly free in style the classical sequence of the suite usually follows: Allemande, Courante, Sarabande and Gigue (1, 2, 3, 8, 11, 15, 16).  There are also individual pieces in a varied form. 

Number 9, Prelude in stile francese, is distinguished only by the addition of a Rondo, and the Fantazia (1.) ends in classical form after a few free movements. The Sonatina (4.) departs from this form, after free Allegro movements and an Adagio-Aria it concludes with a Gigue.

Almost every set that is headed Capriccio (6, 7, 10, 12, 14, 17), as well as the Fantazia (13), is formally completely different. Numbers 6, 12, 13, 17 are in one movement (although with various tempo markings within the piece) partly with extremely virtuoso passagework and broken chords in „Stile fantastico“ with an „improvisatory“ character (this style occurs in many opening movements of the classical suite). The Capricio Nr. 10 is in three movements but very free in form; after a large-scale Da-capo Aria Nr.. 14 concludes with the classical dance sequence and the final Aria Nr. 18 consists of six variations on an Adagio - Aria.

We can see, then, that the headings of the individual movements only partially indicate their internal form and that  firm concepts of genre cannot be applied here.

Schenck could not conceal his musical background with the gamba. Typical here is the filling in chords at the final cadence, also deep in the compass. The suite movements are more conventional but nevertheless well crafted. He developed more of an individual style in the free movements and above all in the Capricci. The pieces are very demanding in places. High poisitions, big jumps and double stops demand a good violin technique.