While transcribing the complete Brandenburg Concertos for piano duet, I realized that some of the slow movements could work really well for solo piano. The Affettuoso from the ever-popular fifth concerto is one of them, scored as a trio for flute and violin soloists with harpsichord accompaniment. Since the release of the Brandenburg Duets recordings, it has become one of the most widely streamed tracks, along with the Adagio from Concerto No. 1. As implied by the title, it should be played “with feeling, in a tender, loving way.” At least that’s how the term is defined in dictionaries. What kind of an emotion should we try to convey here?
For inspiration and reference, it’s always useful to listen to recordings: there are plenty of orchestral ones out there and my piano duet version of is also available.