Sheet music

"Londonderry Air" for Flute & Harp

2 parts3 pages02:536 years ago3,228 views
Flute, Harp
Londonderry Air is an air that originated from County Londonderry in Ireland (now Northern Ireland). It is popular among the Irish diaspora and is very well known throughout the world. The tune is played as the victory anthem of Northern Ireland at the Commonwealth Games. "Danny Boy" is a popular set of lyrics to the tune.

The title of the air came from the name of County Londonderry in Ireland. The air was collected by Jane Ross of Limavady. Ross submitted the tune to music collector George Petrie, and it was then published by the Society for the Preservation and Publication of the Melodies of Ireland in the 1855 book The Ancient Music of Ireland, which Petrie edited. The tune was listed as an anonymous air, with a note attributing its collection to Jane Ross of Limavady.

Although originally written for folk instruments, I created this arrangement for Flute & Harp.
Found in Community

Groups

United Methodist Church

1 discussion • 378 scores • 46 members

Discussions

This concerns one specific score by @Mike Magatagan namely the score https://musescore.com/mike_magatagan/scores/3004231If you click "Download" and choose "PDF including Parts"  the returned document is not a PDF but a "Not Found" error in XML format such as:  <Error><Code>NoSuchKey</Code><Message>The specified key does not exist.</Message><Key>3004231/8628087/18f138fc27/general-parts/score-parts.pdf</Key><RequestId>7C02B5365F83A247</RequestId><HostId>++UrE4WzPLQL6n4nqY64Q5aoi88wzvJjJqfSUqDiw2DSzJYIpfHzp0IE6RMQiDFkoGyv5AujhOA=</HostId></Error> All other export formats work fine.As a test I've downloaded that score in mscz format, opened it up with musescore 2.3.2 and used "Save online" to save it privately into my account (private url https://musescore.com/jeetee/scores/5304581 ). From there I can download the PDF with parts without issues.Mike already tried to "update" his score by resaving the score to his account; we were hoping this would force the musescore server to regenerate this PDF. Alas this seems to not work.Can someone on your end ( @Ximich or @abruhanov probably) debug this and/or force the server to generate that file?Thanks!

Bourée from Sonata III (HWV 363b Opus 1 No 3) for Viola & Piano

2 parts1 page02:193 years ago3,226 views
Viola, Piano
George Frideric (or Frederick) Handel 1685 – 1759) was a German-born, British Baroque composer who spent the bulk of his career in London, becoming well known for his operas, oratorios, anthems, and organ concertos. Born in a family indifferent to music, Handel received critical training in Halle, Hamburg and Italy before settling in London (1712), and became a naturalized British subject in 1727. He was strongly influenced both by the great composers of the Italian Baroque and the middle-German polyphonic choral tradition.

The Flute sonata in G major (HWV 363b) was composed (circa 1711-16) by George Frideric Handel for flute and keyboard (harpsichord). The work is also referred to as Opus 1 No. 5, and was first published in 1732 by Walsh. Other catalogues of Handel's music have referred to the work as HG xxvii,19; and HHA iv/3,28. The sonata was originally composed as an oboe sonata in F major (HWV 363a).

The bourrée is a dance of French origin and the words and music that accompany it. The bourrée somewhat resembles the gavotte, it is in double time and often has a dactylic rhythm but it is somewhat quicker and its phrase starts with a quarter-bar anacrusis or "pick-up" whereas a gavotte has a half-bar anacrusis.

I created this arrangement of the popular 3rd movement bourrée for Viola and Piano.

"Wild Asses" from the "Carnival of the Animals" for Electric Piano

1 part2 pages00:382 years ago1,605 views
Piano
"The Carnival of the Animals" is a musical suite of fourteen movements by the French Romantic composer Camille Saint-Saëns.

It was composed in February 1886 while Saint-Saëns was vacationing in a small Austrian village. It was originally scored for a chamber group of flute/piccolo, clarinet (B flat and C), two pianos, glass harmonica, xylophone, two violins, viola, cello and double bass, but is usually performed today with a full orchestra of strings, and with a glockenspiel substituting for the rare glass harmonica. The term for this rare 11-piece musical ensemble is a "hendectet" or an "undectet."

Saint-Saëns, apparently concerned that the piece was too frivolous and likely to harm his reputation as a serious composer, suppressed performances of it and only allowed one movement, Le cygne, to be published in his lifetime. Only small private performances were given for close friends like Franz Liszt.

Saint-Saëns did, however, include a provision which allowed the suite to be published after his death. It was first performed on 26 February 1922, and it has since become one of his most popular works. It is a favorite of music teachers and young children, along with Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf and Britten's The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra. In fact, it is very common to see any combination of these three works together on modern CD recordings.

Movement 3. Hémiones (animaux véloces) (Wild Asses; quick animals)

The animals depicted here are quite obviously running, an image induced by the constant, feverishly fast up-and-down motion of both pianos playing scales in octaves. These are Asses that come from Tibet, which are known for their great speed.

Although originally written for 2 Pianos (duet), I created this arrangement for Solo Electric (Synth) Piano.

"Ave Maria" on a Prelude by J.S. Bach for String Trio

3 parts4 pages02:414 years ago3,201 views
Violin, Viola, Cello
Ave Maria based on a prelude by J.S. Bach written by French Romantic composer Charles Gounod in 1859 as the "Consideration on Bach's prelude". His Ave Maria consists of a melody superimposed over the Prelude No. 1 in C major, BWV 846, from Book I of The Well-Tempered Clavier, written by J.S. Bach some 137 years earlier.

I took some creative license and added a Violin Part and transcribed the rest for Viola & Cello. I found this to be a hauntingly interesting blend of old and new and utilized the rich strings to accentuate transitions between melody and dissonance; providing musical interest with their overtones to provide suspense and melodic resolution. I created this arrangement for String Trio (Violin, Viola & Cello).

"Stille Nacht" for Piano

1 part1 page02:015 years ago3,191 views
Robert Führer (1807 - 1861) was born in Praha, he became the Director of Music at the Dome in 1839 at the age of 32. He was deemed to be most talented, but he lived a most expensive style of life. To support this extravagant lifestyle he sold a valuable Stradivarius violin which was owned by the Dome. This fact was discovered in 1843, when he was dismissed for the crime. Without a church to call home he wandered through several different towns and villages, but never stayed in any one place for too long. During this period he had to support himself from sales of his church music compositions. Luckily this was successful because his music was well loved. No other composer's works enjoyed as widespread performance amongst the choirs in South Germany and Austria. His musical style varies from a composer such as Mozart, and is more in keeping with that of an early Caecilian. His works were often written for rural choirs, meaning that they were not too musically demanding. In spite of this, larger and more difficult works can be found in his repertoire. Although his works were sometimes judged to not have been "carefully" composed, he surely was a talented and experienced composer, well loved by his public, and had an innate sense for composing a beautiful melodic line.

Although originally created for accompanied chorus, I created this arrangement for Solo Acoustic Piano and it is best played using the "GeneralUser GS.sf2" Soundfont by S. Christian Collins Software (http://www.schristiancollins.com/generaluser.php).

"The Young Prince & Princess" for Flute & Piano

2 parts2 pages02:036 years ago3,169 views
Flute, Piano
As far as stories go, it's hard to top Nikolai Rimsky Korsakov's Scheherazade. It's a treasure trove—a story about one of history's greatest storytellers and the tales she weaves.

Scheherazade is the young bride of the Sultan. After one of his wives cheats on him, he decides to take a new wife every day and have her executed the next morning. But it all stops with Scheherazade. She marries the Sultan in order to save all future young women from this fate. She tells the Sultan fascinating stories, leaving him in such suspense each night that he can't execute her the next morning for fear of not hearing the end of the story. After 1,001 of these well-told tales, the Sultan relents.

Rimsky-Korsakov wrote Scheherazade (a symphonic suite) in the summer of 1888. The piece opens with the Sultan, a big and burly theme (audio) filled with gravitas and ego, almost saying "Here I am, strong and powerful. What do you have to say for yourself?"

The main love story in Scheherazade is found in this, the third movement, called "The Young Prince and the Young Princess." Although originally written for Orchestra, I created this simplified adaptation for Flute and Piano as a recital piece.

"O'Carolan's Concerto" for Violins & Cello

4 parts2 pages02:185 years ago3,131 views
Strings(4)
Turlough O'Carolan was born in Nobber in Co Meath in 1670 and is regarded as one of the finest composers and harpists that Ireland has ever produced. Dr. Douglas Hyde in his literary history of Ireland stated:

"Although many distinguished harpers flourished during the first quarter of the 18th century, yet Turlough O'Carolan stands pre-eminently as the representative Irish musician of that period."

Seán O'Riada was primarily responsible for reviving the music of O'Carolan, as his solo recordings and recordings with Ceoltóirí Chualann testify. 'O'Carolan's Concerto' was recorded on the disc 'Ceol na Nuasal' (The Music of the Nobility).

The story behind 'O'Carolan's Concerto' is an interesting one. It is said that it was a response to a compositional challenge by Francesco Geminiani, the Italian violinist and composer, during his visit to Dublin.

Many of O'Carolan's compositions are still performed by Irish musicians, such as Planxty, The Chieftains and The Dubliners. Derek Bell, who was a musician with The Chieftains and the first to record two albums of O'Carolan's music, commented on this piece:

"'Carolan's Concerto' could be described as a two-part bouree. It isn't a concerto. You could call it his symphony or concerto if several musicians are sounding together in it."

Although this work was originally written for Celtic Harp, I created this arrangement at the request of a user for Violins (3) and Cello.

"The Rose and the Nightingale" for Flute & Piano

2 parts3 pages036 years ago3,129 views
Flute, Piano
The Rose and the Nightingale (Роза и Соловей - Roza i Solovey) was composed in 1866 by the young and not yet famous Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov. The composer used the words of Alexei Koltsov's poem Nightingale: Pushkin's Imitation, which was written in 1831. "The Rose and The Nightingale" was written for someone called Malvina Kyui, most likely Rimsly-Korsakov's romantic interest. The music tells the story of Nightingale, who fell in love with [a] Rose and sings to her all day and night, but [the] Rose just silently listens to his songs.

The translation of the song is, "Nightingale fell in love with Rose, and sings to her all days and nights, but Rose silently listens to his songs. Other singer plays the lyre for young maiden, but sweet maiden doesn't know, to whom he sings and why his songs are so solemn".

This is a haunting and elegant arrangement for solo Flute Acoustic Piano.

"Away in a Manger" Ensemble for Piano, Organ & Choir

6 parts10 pages02:557 years ago3,111 views
Voice(4), Piano, Organ
The song was first published with two verses in an Evangelical Lutheran Sunday School collection, Little Children's Book for Schools and Families (1885), edited by James R. Murray (1841–1905), where it simply bore the title "Away in a Manger" and was set to a tune called "St. Kilda," credited to J.E. Clark.

I created this arrangement for the Sierra Vista United Methodist Church (SVUMC) for Choir (SATB) Piano & Organ.

Allegro from the Trumpet Concerto (Hob.VIIe:1 Mvt. 1) for Trumpet & Piano

2 parts10 pages06:215 years ago3,111 views
Franz Joseph Haydn (1732-1809) is the composer who, more than any other, epitomizes the aims and achievements of the Classical era. Perhaps his most important achievement was that he developed and evolved in countless subtle ways the most influential structural principle in the history of music: his perfection of the set of expectations known as sonata form made an epochal impact. In hundreds of instrumental sonatas, string quartets, and symphonies, Haydn both broke new ground and provided durable models; indeed, he was among the creators of these fundamental genres of classical music. His influence upon later composers is immeasurable; Haydn's most illustrious pupil, Beethoven, was the direct beneficiary of the elder master's musical imagination, and Haydn's shadow lurks within (and sometimes looms over) the music of composers like Schubert, Mendelssohn, and Brahms.

A favorite of the trumpet repertoire and possibly Haydn's most popular concerto, this work was composed in 1796 while the composer was working on the Creation. In the final years of his career Haydn seemed to prefer large choral works to instrumental pieces, but he was intrigued by a request for a concerto from Anton Weidinger, the trumpeter in the Vienna Court Orchestra. The valveless trumpets of the time could play only notes derived from a fundamental pitch and its related harmonic series, and so trumpet music tended to be melodically limited. Weidinger invented a keyed trumpet along the lines of a woodwind instrument; with drilled holes in the body of the instrument, the player could easily raise the pitch in half-tone steps, enabling them to play chromatic passages. The modern trumpet has been greatly refined since Weidinger's time, but the principle remains the same. Weidinger did not perform the Concerto in public until 1800. Surviving in a single manuscript copy, this extraordinary work wasn't performed again until 1929.

Splendidly orchestrated, Haydn's concerto fully exploits the trumpet's new technical abilities. The opening Allegro is festive and radiant, with the orchestra introducing the main themes before they're taken up by the soloist. There's a motif that initially rises, subsequently allowing the trumpet to show off its new stock of notes in the low register. This motif evolves into a fanfare-like subject, which the soloist enriches with effective trills and other ornamentation. The development section requires the trumpeter to play in different keys, which would have been impossible on a valveless trumpet. Opening with a lovely, expansive melody in siciliano style, the second movement reveals the full lyrical and expressive potential of the new trumpet. In addition, this movement, which exemplifies the consummate melodic artistry of Haydn's late works, showcases the instrument's ability to easily modulate from key to key. Written in a sonata rondo form, the concluding Allegro begins with an angular, fanfare-like theme, continuing with material which calls upon the soloist's dexterity in handling trills and other technical effects. Following a concise, brief development section which mainly negotiates primary thematic material, a recapitulation leads the trumpeter to a higher, brighter tessitura. A spirited combination of technical brilliance and musical élan, the third movement ends with a gleaming, celebratory coda.

Although originally written for Orchestra with solo Bb Trumpet, this simplified arrangement pairs the Trumpet with Acoustic Piano and it is best played using the "GeneralUser GS.sf2" Soundfont by S. Christian Collins Software (http://www.schristiancollins.com/generaluser.php).
Three Gymnopédies for Flute & Piano
Video

Three Gymnopédies for Flute & Piano

2 parts18 pages07:516 years ago3,103 views
Satie's Gymnopedies are what many consider to be the groundwork for today's ambient music; it's as ignorable as it is interesting (although, I find it hard to ignore such great music). These three beautiful pieces for acoustic piano and flute are calming, reflective, ethereal, relaxing, soothing, and elegant.

Gymnopedie No. 1 - Lent et douloureux (slow and mournfully):


With a hollow, but eerily warm melody gently floating atop an accompaniment of steady short-long rhythms, Gymnopedie No. 1 is as expressive as it is transparent. Its simplicity and openness masterfully disguises its apparent dissonances.

Gymnopedie No. 2 - Lent et triste (slow and sad):


Gymnopedie No. 2, although sharing the same short-long accompaniment in the left hand, the mood of this piece is entirely different from No. 1 and 3. Its lack of a commitment to a steady key leads the melody on a nebulous path wandering aimlessly through a series of chords.

Gymnopedie No. 3 - Lent et grave (slowly and solemnly):


Similar in melodic structure, Gymnopedie No. 3 is a minor key version of Gymnopedie No. 1. Its hypnotic-like accompaniment leads the listener in an almost out of body experience. If played as it is intended, the texture of this piece is as smooth as silk.

"Panis Angelicus" for Clarinet & Piano

2 parts3 pages02:055 years ago3,101 views
César-Auguste-Jean-Guillaume-Hubert Franck (1822 – 1890) was a composer, pianist, organist, and music teacher who worked in Paris during his adult life. He was born at Liège, in what is now Belgium (though at the time of his birth it was under the Netherlands' control). In that city he gave his first concerts in 1834. He studied privately in Paris from 1835, where his teachers included Anton Reicha. After a brief return to Belgium, and a disastrous reception to an early oratorio Ruth, he moved to Paris, where he married and embarked on a career as teacher and organist. He gained a reputation as a formidable improviser, and travelled widely in France to demonstrate new instruments built by Aristide Cavaillé-Coll.

In 1858 he became organist at Sainte-Clotilde, a position he retained for the rest of his life. He became professor at the Paris Conservatoire in 1872; he took French nationality, a requirement of the appointment. His pupils included Vincent d'Indy, Ernest Chausson, Louis Vierne, Charles Tournemire, Guillaume Lekeu, and Henri Duparc. After acquiring the professorship Franck wrote several pieces that have entered the standard classical repertoire, including symphonic, chamber, and keyboard works.

Franck purchased a practice pedalboard from Pleyel et Cie for home practice to improve his pedal technique, as well as spending many hours at the organ keyboard. The beauty of its sound and the mechanical facilities provided by the instrument assisted his reputation as improviser and composer, not only for organ music but in other genres as well. Pieces for organ, for choir, and for harmonium began to circulate, among the most notable of which is the Messe à 3 voix (1859). The quality of the movements in this work, composed over a number of years, is uneven, but from it comes one of Franck's most enduring compositions, the communion anthem "Panis angelicus" ("Bread of Heaven").

Although originally written for tenor solo with organ and string accompaniment, I created this arrangement for Bb Clarinet & Piano and it is best played using the "GeneralUser GS.sf2" Soundfont by S. Christian Collins Software (http://www.schristiancollins.com/generaluser.php) and using the Clarinet soundfont from SoundFont Downloads at (http://www.soundfontdownloads.com).

"The Wexford Carol" for Violin & Viola

2 parts1 page01:513 years ago3,101 views
Violin, Viola
The Wexford Carol (Irish: Carúl Loch Garman, Carúl Inis Córthaidh) is a traditional religious Irish Christmas carol originating from County Wexford, and specifically, Enniscorthy (whence its other name), and dating to the 12th century. The subject of the song is that of the nativity of Jesus Christ.

"The Wexford Carol" is one of the oldest extant Christmas carols in the European tradition. Traditions abound concerning the song. For many years, it was felt that only men should sing it. It was only at the current revival of all things Irish that this attitude changed. Many popular female artists, such as Loreena McKennitt, recorded the “Wexford Carol” during the 1990s.

The song achieved a new popularity because of the work of William Grattan Flood (1859 - 1928), who was organist and musical director at St. Aidan's Cathedral in Enniscorthy. He transcribed the carol from a local singer, and had it published in the Oxford Book of Carols, putting Enniscorthy into most carol books around the world. The song is sometimes known by its first verse, "Good people all this Christmas time."

Although originally written for voice, I created this arrangement for Violin & Viola Duet.

"Trumpet Tune & March" in C Major for Brass Quartet

4 parts2 pages025 years ago3,091 views
Trumpet(2), French Horn, Tuba
Jeremiah Clarke (c. 1674–1707) was an English baroque composer, organist and, pupil of John Blow at St Paul's Cathedral. He later became organist at the Chapel Royal. After his death, he was succeeded in that post by William Croft.

Clarke is best remembered for a popular keyboard piece: the Prince of Denmark's March, which is commonly called the Trumpet Voluntary, written about 1700. From c. 1878 until the 1940s the work was attributed to Henry Purcell, and was published as Trumpet Voluntary by Henry Purcell in William Sparkes's Short Pieces for the Organ, Book VII, No. 1 (London, Ashdown and Parry). This version came to the attention of Sir Henry J. Wood, who made two orchestral transcriptions of it, both of which were recorded. The recordings further cemented the erroneous notion that the original piece was by Purcell. Clarke's piece is a popular choice for wedding music, and has featured in royal weddings.

The famous Trumpet Tune in D (also incorrectly attributed to Purcell), was taken from the semi-opera The Island Princess which was a joint musical production of Clarke and Daniel Purcell (Henry Purcell's younger brother)—probably leading to the confusion.

Although originally written for Pipe Organ, I Arranged this piece for Brass Quartet (2 Bb Trumpets, French Horn & Tuba).

"Spirit of the Living God" Prelude Medley for Organ

1 part2 pages02:117 years ago3,079 views
A quiet prelude arranged for the Sierra Vista United Methodist Church (SVUMC) consisting of an adaptation of the "Call to Prayer" by Thurlow Weed (1929) with the "Spirit of the Living God" by Daniel Iverson (1926). The composite hymn text is a prayer for the Holy Spirit to work renewal in the individual heart and to make these renewed people one in love and service. Best played using the "GeneralUser GS.sf2" Soundfont by S. Christian Collins Software.

"Carnival of Venice" (Opus 10 MS 59) Theme & Variations for Flute & Guitar

2 parts5 pages03:482 years ago3,076 views
Flute, Guitar
Niccolò (or Nicolò) Paganini (1782 – 1840) was an Italian violinist, violist, guitarist, and composer. He was one of the most celebrated violin virtuosi of his time, and left his mark as one of the pillars of modern violin technique.

Paganini composed his own works to play exclusively in his concerts, all of which had profound influences on the evolution of violin techniques. His 24 Caprices were probably composed in the period between 1805 to 1809, while he was in the service of the Baciocchi court. Also during this period, he composed the majority of the solo pieces, duo-sonatas, trios and quartets for the guitar. These chamber works may have been inspired by the publication, in Lucca, of the guitar quintets of Boccherini. Many of his variations (and he has become the de facto master of this musical genre), including "Le Streghe", "The Carnival of Venice" (this), and "Nel cor più non mi sento", were composed, or at least first performed, before his European concert tour.

In 1855, Thomas Aptommas created this arrangement was created entirely for Concert (Pedal) Harp and from it, I created this interpretation for Flute and Classical Guitar.

"La Fille aux Cheveux de Lin" for Flute & Harp

2 parts3 pages01:496 years ago3,075 views
The eighth number in Claude Debussy's first book of piano Preludes, a volume the composer worked on between about 1907 and 1910, is the celebrated "La fille aux cheveux de lin" (The Girl with the Flaxen Hair), two pages of delicate, superbly-crafted music that rival the Clair de lune from the Suite bergamasque and the Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun as the most widely recognized entry in the composer's catalog.

One of Debussy's happiest decisions when composing his Preludes is, sadly, one that has been all but undone by publishers. Nowadays one finds the Preludes' picturesque little descriptions (such as "girl with the flaxen hair") at the top of each piece in bold, assertive type. When Debussy put the pieces to paper, however, he placed the descriptions at the end of each piece, as hints, even questions -- these are not the miniature, concrete-subjected tone poems we are sometimes led to believe. Indeed, the title La fille aux cheveux de lin is so famous that it can sometimes distract from the fact that the piece is as perfectly poised and flawlessly balanced a work of piano music as one might hope for.
The unaccompanied melody at the opening glistens (it is really just an arpeggio, so guilelessly drawn that one marvels at the effect it has). The mild climax in the middle of the piece is fine china -- radiant but ever so brittle, always in danger of being irreparably cracked or even smashed by an over-zealous pianist. The uncertain parallel fourths of the final pianissimo "murmuring" (called thus by Debussy) are turned on their heads after four bars, rising up into the warm sun of one last sonorous G flat major chord.

Although originally written for Solo Piano, I created this arrangement for Flute & Harp and it is best played using the "GeneralUser GS.sf2" Soundfont by S. Christian Collins Software (http://www.schristiancollins.com/generaluser.php).

Prelude from the Cello Suite in D Major (BWV 1012) for Viola

1 part3 pages03:504 years ago3,073 views
Viola
It is thought that Bach wrote his six suites for unaccompanied cello between 1717 and 1723, while he was in the employ of Prince Leopold of Anhalt-Cöthen and had two superb solo cellists, Bernard Christian Linigke and Christian Ferdinand Abel, at his disposal. However, the earliest copy of the suites dates from 1726, and no autographs survive. Thus a chronological order is difficult to prove, though one guesses that these suites were composed in numerical order from the way that they gradually evolve and deepen, both technically and musically.

A Baroque suite is typically a collection of dance movements, usually in binary form with each half repeated. Common elements of the suite were the Allemande (German dance), a moderately slow duple-meter dance; the Courante, a faster dance in triple meter; the Sarabande, a Spanish-derived dance in a slow triple meter with emphasis on the second beat; and a Gigue (Jig), which is rapid, jaunty, and energetic. Bach took these typical dance forms and abstracted them, and then added a free-form, almost improvisatory Prelude which sets the tone for each suite, and a galanterie, an additional dance interposed between Sarabande and Gigue. (In the first two suites, Bach uses a pair of Minuets.) With these dances, Bach experimented and created the first, and arguably still the finest, solo works for a relatively new instrument.

As unique and extraordinary as each of Bach's other five cello suites are, the Suite No. 6 is perhaps the most ambitious, strangest, richest of all. For this suite, Bach chose the key of D major, the triumphant key of his Magnificat and the "Dona nobis pacem" which concludes the Mass in B minor. He also calls for a five-stringed variant on the cello, though the work is playable on a conventional (four-stringed) cello. With these resources, Bach calls for resounding joy, carefully implied harmonies, and a rich, dense counterpoint that tests the cellist's skills to the maximum.

Other possible instruments for the suite include a cello da spalla, a version of the violoncello piccolo played on the shoulder like a viola, as well as a viola with a fifth string tuned to E, called a viola pomposa. As the range required in this piece is very large, the suite was probably intended for a larger instrument, although it is conceivable that Bach—who was fond of the viola—may have performed the work himself on an arm-held violoncello piccolo. However, it is equally likely that beyond hinting the number of strings, Bach did not intend any specific instrument at all as the construction of instruments in the early 18th century was highly variable.

Performers wishing to play the piece on a modern four-string instruments encounter difficulties as they are forced to use very high positions to reach many of the notes, though modern cellists regularly perform the suite on the 4-string instrument. Performers specialising in early music and using authentic instruments generally use the 5-string cello for this suite, including Anner Bylsma, Pieter Wispelwey, Jaap ter Linden and Josephine van Lier. The most common method of transposing this suite for viola, is to transpose the entire suite to G major, avoiding "a tone colour which is not very suitable for this type of music" and making most of the original chords playable on a four-stringed instrument.

This suite is written in much more free form than the others, containing more cadenza-like movements and virtuosic passages. It is also the only one of the suites that is partly notated in the Tenor C clef, which is not needed for the others since they never go above the note G4 (G above middle C).

The Prelude, in a steady triple meter, is the only place in the set where Bach employed the dynamic markings (forte and piano), to simulate the effect of a Vivaldi-like echo sonata with phrases calling, responding, and gradually growing and developing into a fast-moving and playful cadenza and an untroubled recapitulation. With each suite Bach continues his progression away from simple dance-like structural roots. Melodic leaps are introduced in the fourth suite, chords in the fifth suite, and a subtle mix of chords, leaps, and implied harmonies, which become as important as the melodies, in the sixth suite. Indeed, this suite comes close in its technical challenges to the polyphonic simulations that Bach created in the partitas and sonatas for solo violin.

Although this piece was originally written for a period bass instrument, I transcribed it (Transposing to G-Major) for Viola.