Bach Plays Sax

Bach Plays Sax is a programme that takes a new look at the great German composer's work and combines two different worlds in a single concert. On the one hand, original pieces given swing adaptations by four composers, Stefano Caniato, Arianna Scartozzi, Pierluigi Alessandrini and Roberto Sansuini, who have produced new arrangements in their own styles and using their own compositional approaches.

Some of them have kept the melodic material intact while transforming the harmonies and diction in contemporary style, while others have maintained just a few cells of the original piece and effectively destructured it, changing time signatures and counterpoints to the point of creating an apparently new composition still profoundly related to the original piece.

In both cases, the result is a new musical product, different from the countless modern reworkings of Bach's music produced over the years.

The jazz part of the programme is countered by faithful transcriptions of pieces by Bach for saxophone quartet. This gives the concert a constantly changing mood, enabling listeners to appreciate different and varying aspects of Bach's music, played in classical style but with instruments born more than a century after the great composer's death.

The reinterpreted works draw on the whole of Bach's repertoire, from the Brandenburg concertos to the Passions, and from the preludes for solo instrument to the suites.

This project is not intended for musical purists, but aims to enable as many people as possible to appreciate how the timeless beauty of Bach's music can successfully dialogue with jazz without losing its appeal.


S.Caniato – ERBARME DICH from Passione secondo Matteo
S.Caniato – SICILIANO from Sonata il Mib Maggiore BWV 1031
P. Alessandrini – PER BACH from Concerto Brandeburghese N°1
R. Sansuini – JAZZ GAVOTTE from Suite Inglese N° 6
R. Sansuini – WALKIN’ WITH J.S. BACH medley:

Allemanda from “Suite Francese” N°4
Preludio “Wachet auf, ruft uns die stimme” from 6 corali Schubler per Organo
Badinerie from “Suite per orchestra” N°2
Preludio XII from “Clavicembalo ben temperato” Libro II
Fuga canonica from “Offerta musicale”
Invenzione a due voci N°13
Aria from “Suite per Orchestra” N°3