Inventions and Sinfonias (Bach)
The Inventions and Sinfonias, BWV 772–801, also known as the Two- and Three-Part Inventions, are a collection of thirty short keyboard compositions by Johann Sebastian Bach (1685–1750): 15 inventions, which are 2-part contrapuntal pieces, and 15 sinfonias, which are 3-part contrapuntal pieces. They were originally written as musical exercises for his students.
Bach titled the collection:
Honest method, by which the amateurs of the keyboard – especially, however, those desirous of learning – are shown a clear way not only (1) to learn to play cleanly in two parts, but also, after further progress, (2) to handle three obligate parts correctly and well; and along with this not only to obtain good inventions (ideas) but to develop the same well; above all, however, to achieve a cantabile style in playing and at the same time acquire a strong foretaste of composition.
|C major||No. 1, BWV 772||No. 1, BWV 787
|C minor||No. 2, BWV 773||No. 2, BWV 788
|D major||No. 3, BWV 774||No. 3, BWV 789
|D minor||No. 4, BWV 775||No. 4, BWV 790
|E-flat major||No. 5, BWV 776||No. 5, BWV 791
|E major||No. 6, BWV 777||No. 6, BWV 792
|E minor||No. 7, BWV 778||No. 7, BWV 793
|F major||No. 8, BWV 779||No. 8, BWV 794
|F minor||No. 9, BWV 780||No. 9, BWV 795
|G major||No. 10, BWV 781||No. 10, BWV 796
|G minor||No. 11, BWV 782||No. 11, BWV 797
|A major||No. 12, BWV 783||No. 12, BWV 798
|A minor||No. 13, BWV 784||No. 13, BWV 799
|B-flat major||No. 14, BWV 785||No. 14, BWV 800
|B minor||No. 15, BWV 786||No. 15, BWV 801
|To play the MIDI files (Inventions), click their titles.
For information on the MIDI files, click the speaker icon.
These are computer-generated representations of Bach's music,
and do not convey how a human pianist would perform them.
|All Sinfonias played by Randolph Hokanson|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Inventions and Sinfonias.|
- Inventions, Sinfonias: Free scores at the International Music Score Library Project
- Mutopia's editions of Bach's Inventions and Sinfonias
- History and analysis of Bach's inventions
- Bach – Inventions ( 43:26 minutes) at BBC's Discovering Music: Listening Library
- Overview of Inventions from Tim Smith's website
- Graphical Motif Extraction of the Inventions and Sinfonias