About this work
While most of the suites from the first volume of Handel's keyboard suites published in 1720 were in six movements, the suites in the second volume, published in 1733, range from three to seven movements. Both the Suite No. 1 in G minor and Suite No. 4 in E minor are in three movements and both have the same three types of movements in the same order: Allemande, Courante, and Gigue. But where the G minor suite is predominantly extroverted and virtuosic, the E minor suite is predominantly introverted and undemonstrative. Its Allemande is a quietly pensive movement with intertwining lines. Its Courante is an inwardly brooding movement with a delicate melody above a flowing bass line. The closing Gigue, however, is an explosion of pent-up passion expressed in raging sixteenth notes and furious syncopations.