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Johann Christian Bach's Keyboard Music

Johann Christian Bach was Johann Sebastian’s youngest child of his second marriage to Anna Magdalena. Unlike the rest of his family, he looked outside of Germany for his education and employment. J.C. Bach traveled to London where he eventually found a pretty cushy job as the music master to the queen. His duties included organizing chamber concerts, directing the queen’s band, and giving the queen and her children keyboard lessons.

Susan Alexander-Max has recorded Bach’s Keyboard Sonatas, opus 5 on the Naxos label. She plays these sonatas on an instrument built in 1785. While these sonatas are probably more than the queen or her children could handle, they display the wide range of dynamics that fortepianos could express, unlike the harpsichord.

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