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About this Piece

The second of Bach’s four orchestral suites is actually the one he composed last, in Leipzig around 1739, and is probably the last orchestral music of any kind that he wrote. It is basically a solo flute concerto in the form of a dance suite, and an extraordinarily difficult flute concerto at that. A badinerie is a sort of character piece in 18th-century suites, with no particular dance rhythm or meter. This one has a full measure of the light and lively bantering the title implies, which has made it also popular with jazz arrangers.