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Did Bach Really Compose Some of the Works He Is Credited For?

We all know that Johann Sebastian Bach is one of the more popular composers, and several piano students learn some of his piano songs as part of their repertoire.

However, researchers feel that some of the famous works that are attributed to Bach were actually not composed by the great composer himself but by his second wife.
Here are some more instances.
According to research conducted by Schulze and listed in the Peters Edition of the Notebook, the keyboard pieces were composed by J.S. Bach himself, Couperin, Hasse, Böhm, his sons J. C. Bach and C.P.E. Bach, and Petzold, while some nine pieces are anonymous.
The familiar “Minuet in G” (BWV Anh. II. 114) and its partner piece, “Minuet in G minor” (BWV Anh. II. 115) were traditionally believed to have been composed by J. S. Bach. However, recent research, particularly on the part of Hans-Joachim Schulze, points to the German composer and organist Christian Petzold (1677-1733).
Recent speculation suggests that Anna Magdalena Bach (1701-1760) may have been the composer of several pieces attributed to her husband. Johann Sebastian wrote a number of compositions dedicated to her, most notably the two Notenbüchlein für Anna Magdalena Bach. She regularly helped him transcribe his music.
Though there is no sure way to really prove this right or wrong, there is no doubt whatsoever that Bach clearly had a strong influence on most contemporary musicians; there are many students who are big fan of Bach.
The findings however have been described as “highly important” by Bach scholars and will be published in a doctorate, later this year. Bach scholar Professor Martin Jarvis suggests – on the basis of having used police forensic science techniques – that famous works attributed to Johann Sebastian Bach were not penned by the great composer himself, but by his second wife.
You can read more in this article in The Telegraph (on April 22, 2006).
You can also follow more discussions on various J.S. Bach-related subjects at the Bach-Cantatas website: