Suite No.7

George Frideric Handel

Suite No.7 in G minor

HWV432

About this work

Back in the days before international copyright laws, any publisher could publish anything they wanted without fear of legal action. Thus, Jeanne Roger of Amsterdam published "surrepticious and incorrect Copies" of the suites in 1719 without paying or informing the composer. This led Handel to publish the works himself in London in 1720. The Suite in G Suite is one of the grandest and most impressive of the suites. In six movements, the Suite in G minor is much more than a standard-issue set of stylized dance movements. The first movement is an overture in the French style with a massive opening Adagio, followed by a fast and brutal Presto, with a pummeling theme played in thirds, sixths, and octaves. The following movement is a quietly lyrical Andante with a gently embellished melody. The next movement is a propulsive, two-voice Allegro in 3/8 time. The central Sarabande, marked Andante con moto, is an incredibly simple and affecting series of three- and four-voice chords with the melody as the top voice. The Gigue that follows is a hurtling movement in two virtuoso voices. The climax and culmination of the Suite in G minor is the monumental Passacaglia of contrapuntal force majeure.

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