Trumpet Inspiration 23

Today’s video is a performance of Brandenburg Concerto #2 by Johan Sebastian Bach. This piece was written in 1721, and it is still considered one of the most challenging pieces in the trumpet repertoire because of the extreme demands on range and control.

The valves we have on modern trumpets had not been invented when this piece was written, so used a natural trumpet would have been used. As you can see in the video, this instrument does not have valves, so the only way to change notes is with your air and lips! The small holes on the side of the instrument can be covered or opened to adjust tuning on certain notes. This piece can also be performed on the modern piccolo trumpet.

As you listen, notice how musical phrases are passed seamlessly from one instrument to another. Bach was a true master of this style of composing. The trumpet player in this recording is Neil Brough, and his performance is outstanding!

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