Not so Bach: “Minuet in G Major”
Bach “ Minuet in G Major” is an instrumental arrangement for piano to play a minute in the specific key. This piece is a 32-measure composition in the key of G major.
The history of this piano is very checkered. For one, the oldest mention of this piece is in 1725 Notebook for Anna Magdalena Bach (German: Notenbüchlein für Anna Magdalena Bach). The two notebooks are a collection of keyboard music that Johann Sebastian Bach gave to his second wife, Anna Magdalena Bach. The notebooks are dated 1722 and 1725, respectively. Apart from the piano pieces and arrangement, the notebooks contain chosen pieces for songs or voices.
Bach’s Minuet in G comprises of two-piano arrangements, one is BWV Anh. 114 (Minuet in G Major) and BWV Anh. 115 (Minuet in G minor). Based on the discovery of the arrangement, both pieces were attributed to Bach due to its presence in the notebook. However, it was seen as the two minuets were anonymous works that were compiled and included for Bach’s wife. In the 1970s, both the G minor and G major pieces were also found in Christian Petzold’s harpsichord suite. After the discovery, they were attributed to Petzold.
Christian Petzold (1677 –1733) was a fellow German composer to Bach. He was also an organist. He was very active and worked mostly in the German city of Dresden, where he achieved a high reputation for his work. Most of his work revolves around sacred or Church music and playing with the organ. He received top praise from his contemporaries and also made some music tours as far as Paris. Only a few pieces of works survive. Among them are the two famous Minuet in G in Major and Minor.
Despite its short playtime, Minuet in G major is a popular tune. This tune has been the basis of A Lover’s Concerto, which was written by American songwriters Sandy Linzer and Denny Randell. The song was made in 1965.