Passacaglia

Today’s selection is the final piece of the Rosary Sonatas, also known as the Mystery Sonatas or Copper-Engraving Sonatas, a set of 15 short sonatas for violin and continuo that ends with a passacaglia for solo violin.

Bohemian-Austrian violinist and composer Heinrich Ignaz Franz Biber (1644-1704), known for his technically complex works, wrote the series sometime around 1676. But the collection’s existence had not been known until it was published in 1905; it then became one of Biber’s most famous compositions.

Today, browsing through several suggested videos and checking out the sidebar suggestions within those, I found a video of a performance of the Biber passacaglia, transcribed for a 13-course lute and played by Spanish musician Xavier Díaz-Latorre. It’s quite a remarkable piece.

Now you know a little about why this is my Song of the Day for Today, on Classical Sunday. Thanks for joining me here, and please enjoy.

Here’s the video for the song from Xavier Díaz-Latorre’s YouTube channel:

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