The Presto that closes the movement is reminiscent of a more archaic era, with its sequences that carry on for many repetitions. They give the effect of long sweeping waves that take the listener from one section to another, ending the Sonata with brilliant bravura writing.

The performance notes in our edition have a short discussion about the Presto, mentioning that the First Sonata has several features that stem from an earlier era, and that this Presto in particular uses more archaic techniques than was typical of Bach’s writing. The video linked on the right discusses in detail how the Presto can be seen as stemming from a more archaic writing style than is typical of Bach.

We have had positive responses to this tutorial, we think because it discusses the presto in this new light, showing specifically how Bach is using little figures strung together linearly. The video also presents an interesting perspective, not only on how the piece is held together, but also how the Presto can be seen as tying the whole sonata together. Additionally, there are some tips on how guitarists can manage some of the fingerwork involved, in what may at first seem like difficult passages. We hope you will enjoy it and recommend it to other musicians who may be playing this wonderful Presto.