Bach - Piano Music

Johann Sebastian Bach

Johann Sebastian Bach seems to sum up human experience in a way that only the greatest creative geniuses are capable of. His sense of musical architecture and brilliance in working out contrapuntal lines stimulate the mind. But the music appeals equally powerfully to our emotions, and the dance element is never far away. Even if Bach lived before the era of the modern piano, his keyboard music belongs to the most essential repertoire for pianists.

Top Pieces:

Prelude & Fugue 1 in C Major, BWV 846

If Bach’s Well-Tempered Clavier is the “Old Testament of piano music”, then this Prelude must be Genesis, chapter 1: In the beginning, God created the heaven and the earth… Like the first verses of the Bible, it speaks a universal language, characterized by solemn simplicity and soothing repetitiveness.

Goldberg Variations in G Major, BWV 988

The relentlessly intricate architecture of the Goldberg Variations still engages scholars after hundreds of years, while the soothing, noble poetry and formidable technical demands of the piece continue to captivate players and listeners.

Invention 1 in C Major, BWV 772

Composed to develop a singing style of playing, Bach's Inventions are masterful miniatures full of charm and feeling, and a great introduction to contrapuntal music, where different voices imitate and converse with each other.

Invention 4 in D Minor, BWV 775

This invention is a great example of Bach's ability to mix simplicity with sophistication, extracting a beautiful musical creation out of an extremely basic idea.

Minuet in G Major, BWV Anh. 114

In the lives of countless piano students, this little Minuet has represented their first meeting with Bach. But we don't even know if Bach composed it!

Small Prelude in C Major, BWV 939

The most well-known of the "Small Preludes" is an excellent introduction to several aspects of Bach's music: the conversational style, chordal structures and his use of dynamic effects.


Johann Sebastian Bach (1685—1750) lost both his parents at a young age and was sent to live with his brother Johann Christoph, where he received his first musical instruction. 18 years old, he was appointed organist in Arnstadt, where the church authorities were confused by his "curious embellishments" of the chorales; their irritation increased when he prolonged by several months the leave granted him to visit Lübeck and attend Buxtehude´s concerts. He then worked for the Duke Wilhelm of Weimar for almost ten years, but as he didn’t get the promotion that he wanted he eventually applied for the post of Kapellmeister to the musically talented Prince Leopold of Anhalt-Cöthen. Duke Wilhelm was not pleased and threw Bach in jail for a month before discharging him.

In Cöthen, Bach completed many instrumental works, including the first book of The Well-Tempered Clavier, and the Brandenburg Concertos. In 1720, his first wife Maria Barbara died suddenly, leaving Bach with four young children, including Wilhelm Friedemann and Carl Philipp Emanuel. The following year he married Anna Magdalena, who was to bear him a further 13, of whom ten died in infancy. When Prince Leopold married, the good times in Cöthen ended, as his wife resented his preoccupation with music. This led Bach to apply for the post of Thomaskantor at Leipzig, where during his first five years Bach completed three annual cycles of cantatas, the St John (1724) and St Matthew (1727) Passions, and many other sacred works. How he was able to stay on this exalted level of creativity for so long remains a mystery, as his resources actually were quite limited: when he set out his minimum requirements for a well-regulated church music, he received in response from the church authorities only a threat to reduce his salary.

During his last years Bach created works of a somewhat abstract and general nature. The B minor Mass is an exemplar of the mastery he had attained in all the main sacred genres, while pieces like the Goldberg Variations and the Variations for organ on Vom Himmel hoch explore canonic writing. The Art of Fugue, a vast compendium of contrapuntal techniques, remained unfinished. Towards the end of his life Bach went blind. A contemporary newspaper reported that the cause of his death at age 65 was "from the unhappy consequences of a very unsuccessful eye operation", performed by the British surgeon John Taylor.

Quotes by Bach

"Like all music, the figured bass should have no other end and aim than the glory of God and the recreation of the soul; where this is not kept in mind there is no true music, but only an infernal clamour and ranting."

Quotes about Bach

"I think that if I were required to spend the rest of my life on a desert island, and to listen to or play the music of any one composer during all that time, that composer would almost certainly be Bach. I really can't think of any other music which is so all-encompassing, which moves me so deeply and so consistently, and which, to use a rather imprecise word, is valuable beyond all of its skill and brilliance for something more meaningful than that – its humanity." (Glenn Gould)

"Not brook, but ocean should be his name (Beethoven; Bach is the German word for brook)

"Since the best man [Telemann] could not be obtained, we were forced to fall back on mediocrities." (Statement of the Leipzig City Council when Bach was appointed Thomaskantor)

Bach Piano Sheet Music

for digital devices or to download & print

Total pieces by Bach: 250

TitleKey YearLevel

Most popular pieces:

Prelude & Fugue 1 BWV 846C Major 17228
Goldberg Variations BWV 988G Major 17418+
Invention 1 BWV 772C Major 17235
Invention 4 BWV 775D Minor 17235
Minuet (by C. Petzold) BWV Anh. 114G Major 17252
Small Prelude BWV 939C Major 17273

All pieces:

Small Preludes and Fughettas

Small Prelude BWV 924 C Major 17204
Small Prelude BWV 925 D Major 17205
Small Prelude BWV 926 D Minor 17204
Small Prelude BWV 927 F Major 17204
Small Prelude BWV 928 F Major 17205
Small Prelude BWV 929 G Minor 17204
Small Prelude BWV 930 G Minor 17205
Small Prelude BWV 931 A Minor 17205
Small Prelude (Incomplete) BWV 932 E Minor 17205
Small Prelude BWV 933 C Major 17205
Small Prelude BWV 934 C Minor 17204
Small Prelude BWV 935 D Minor 17205
Small Prelude BWV 936 D Major 17205
Small Prelude BWV 937 E Major 17205
Small Prelude BWV 938 E Minor 17205
Small Prelude BWV 939C Major 17273
Small Prelude BWV 940 D Major 17175
Small Prelude BWV 941 E Minor 17174
Small Prelude BWV 942 A Minor 17175
Small Prelude BWV 943 C Major 17175
Small Prelude BWV 999 C Minor 17255
Fugue BWV 952 C Major 17237
Fugue BWV 953 C Major 17238
Fughetta BWV 961 C Minor 17125
Prelude & Fugue BWV 895 A Minor 17095
Prelude & Fughetta BWV 899 D Minor 17265
Prelude & Fughetta BWV 900 E Minor 17265
Prelude & Fughetta BWV 901F Major 17087
Prelude & Fughetta BWV 902G Major 17087


Invention 1 BWV 772C Major 17235
Invention 2 BWV 773C Minor 17235
Invention 3 BWV 774D Major 17235
Invention 4 BWV 775D Minor 17235
Invention 5 BWV 776E-flat Major 17235
Invention 6 BWV 777E Major 17235
Invention 7 BWV 778E Minor 17236
Invention 8 BWV 779F Major 17236
Invention 9 BWV 780F Minor 17236
Invention 10 BWV 781G Major 17236
Invention 11 BWV 782G Minor 17236
Invention 12 BWV 783A Major 17236
Invention 13 BWV 784A Minor 17236
Invention 14 BWV 785B-flat Major 17236
Invention 15 BWV 786B Minor 17236


Sinfonia 1 BWV 787C Major 17236
Sinfonia 2 BWV 788C Minor 17236
Sinfonia 3 BWV 789D Major 17236
Sinfonia 4 BWV 790D Minor 17236
Sinfonia 5 BWV 791E-flat Major 17236
Sinfonia 6 BWV 792E Major 17236
Sinfonia 7 BWV 793E Minor 17236
Sinfonia 8 BWV 794F Major 17236
Sinfonia 9 BWV 795F Minor 17236
Sinfonia 10 BWV 796G Major 17236
Sinfonia 11 BWV 797G Minor 17237
Sinfonia 12 BWV 798A Major 17237
Sinfonia 13 BWV 799A Minor 17237
Sinfonia 14 BWV 800B-flat Major 17237
Sinfonia 15 BWV 801B Minor 17237

The Well-Tempered Clavier Book 1

Prelude & Fugue 1 BWV 846C Major 17228
Prelude & Fugue 2 BWV 847C Minor 17227
Prelude & Fugue 3 BWV 848C-sharp Major 17227
Prelude & Fugue 4 BWV 849C-sharp Minor 17228
Prelude & Fugue 5 BWV 850D Major 17228
Prelude & Fugue 6 BWV 851D Minor 17227
Prelude & Fugue 7 BWV 852E-flat Major 17228
Prelude & Fugue 8 BWV 853E-flat Minor 17228
Prelude & Fugue 9 BWV 854E Major 17228
Prelude & Fugue 10 BWV 855E Minor 17228
Prelude & Fugue 11 BWV 856F Major 17228
Prelude & Fugue 12 BWV 857F Minor 17228
Prelude & Fugue 13 BWV 858F-sharp Major 17228
Prelude & Fugue 14 BWV 859F-sharp Minor 17228
Prelude & Fugue 15 BWV 860G Major 17228
Prelude & Fugue 16 BWV 861G Minor 17228
Prelude & Fugue 17 BWV 862A-flat Major 17228
Prelude & Fugue 18 BWV 863G-sharp Minor 17228
Prelude & Fugue 19 BWV 864A Major 17228
Prelude & Fugue 20 BWV 865A Minor 17228
Prelude & Fugue 21 BWV 866B-flat Major 17228
Prelude & Fugue 22 BWV 867B-flat Minor 17228
Prelude & Fugue 23 BWV 868B Major 17228
Prelude & Fugue 24 BWV 869B Minor 17228

The Well-Tempered Clavier Book 2

Prelude & Fugue 1 BWV 870C Major 17388
Prelude & Fugue 2 BWV 871C Minor 17388
Prelude & Fugue 3 BWV 872C-sharp Major 17388
Prelude & Fugue 4 BWV 873C-sharp Minor 17388
Prelude & Fugue 5 BWV 874D Major 17388
Prelude & Fugue 6 BWV 875D Minor 17388
Prelude & Fugue 7 BWV 876E-flat Major 17388
Prelude & Fugue 8 BWV 877D-sharp Minor 17388
Prelude & Fugue 9 BWV 878E Major 17388
Prelude & Fugue 10 BWV 879E Minor 17388
Prelude & Fugue 11 BWV 880F Major 17388
Prelude & Fugue 12 BWV 881F Minor 17388
Prelude & Fugue 13 BWV 882F-sharp Major 17388
Prelude & Fugue 14 BWV 883F-sharp Minor 17388
Prelude & Fugue 15 BWV 884G Major 17388
Prelude & Fugue 16 BWV 885G Minor 17388
Prelude & Fugue 17 BWV 886A-flat Major 17388
Prelude & Fugue 18 BWV 887G-sharp Minor 17388
Prelude & Fugue 19 BWV 888A Major 17388
Prelude & Fugue 20 BWV 889A Minor 17388
Prelude & Fugue 21 BWV 890B-flat Major 17388
Prelude & Fugue 22 BWV 891B-flat Minor 17388
Prelude & Fugue 23 BWV 892B Major 17388
Prelude & Fugue 24 BWV 893B Minor 17388

French Suites

French Suite 1 BWV 812D Minor 17228
French Suite 2 BWV 813C Minor 17228
French Suite 3 BWV 814B Minor 17228
French Suite 4 BWV 815E-flat Major 17228
French Suite 5 BWV 816G Major 17228
French Suite 6 BWV 817E Major 17228

English Suites

English Suite 1 BWV 806A Major 17228+
English Suite 2 BWV 807A Minor 17228+
English Suite 3 BWV 808G Minor 17228+
English Suite 4 BWV 809F Major 17228+
English Suite 5 BWV 810E Minor 17228+
English Suite 6 BWV 811D Minor 17228+


Partita 1 BWV 825B-flat Major 17318+
Partita 2 BWV 826C Minor 17318+
Partita 3 BWV 827A Minor 17318+
Partita 4 BWV 828D Major 17318+
Partita 5 BWV 829G Major 17318+
Partita 6 BWV 830E Minor 17318+

Miscellaneous Suites

Suite BWV 818 A Minor 17057
Suite BWV 819 E-flat Major 17257
Ouverture BWV 820 F Major 17056
Suite BWV 821B-flat Major -8
Suite BWV 823 F Minor 17157
Suite BWV 832 A Major 17087
Prelude and Partita BWV 833 F Major 17087

Miscellaneous Fugues

Fugue BWV 946C Major 17088+
Fugue BWV 947A Minor -8+
Fugue BWV 948D Minor -8+
Fugue BWV 949 A Major 17158
Fugue on a Theme by Albinoni BWV 950A Major 17108+
Fugue - after Reinken BWV 954 B-flat Major 17308
Fugue - after Erselius BWV 955 B-flat Major -8
Fugue BWV 956 E Minor -7
Fugue BWV 958 A Minor -7
Fugue BWV 959 A Minor -8
The Art of Fugue BWV 1080D Minor 17498+


Toccata BWV 910 F-sharp Minor 17128+
Toccata BWV 911 C Minor 17148+
Toccata BWV 912 D Major 17148+
Toccata BWV 913 D Minor 17148
Toccata BWV 914 E Minor 17148
Toccata BWV 915 G Minor 17148+
Toccata BWV 916 G Major 17148

Four Duets

Duet 1 BWV 802 E Minor 17397
Duet 2 BWV 803 F Major 17397
Duet 3 BWV 804 G Major 17397
Duet 4 BWV 805 A Minor 17398


Sonata BWV 963 D Major 17256
Sonata - after BWV 1003 BWV 964 D Minor 17258+
Sonata - after Reinken BWV 965 A Minor 17258
Sonata - after Reinken BWV 966 C Major 17258+
Sonata BWV 967 A Minor 17257


Keyboard Concerto BWV 1052D Minor 17388+
Keyboard Concerto BWV 1053 E Major 17388+
Keyboard Concerto BWV 1054 D Major 17388
Keyboard Concerto BWV 1055 A Major 17388
Keyboard Concerto BWV 1056 F Minor 17388
Keyboard Concerto BWV 1057 F Major 17388+
Keyboard Concerto BWV 1058 G Minor 17388
Concerto - for two keyboards BWV 1060 C Minor 17458
Concerto - for two keyboards BWV 1061 C Major 17348
Concerto - for two keyboards BWV 1062 C Minor 17368
Concerto - for three keyboards BWV 1063 D Minor 17458+
Concerto - for three keyboards BWV 1064 C Major 17458+
Concerto - for four keyboards BWV 1065 A Minor 17308+

Concerto Transcriptions

Vivaldi: Violin Concerto op. 3 no. 9 BWV 972D Major 17146
Vivaldi: Violin Concerto op. 7 no. 2 BWV 973G Major 17146
Marcello: Oboe Concerto BWV 974D Minor 17147
Vivaldi: Violin Concerto op. 4 no. 6 BWV 975G Minor 17146
Vivaldi: Violin Concerto op. 3 no. 12 BWV 976C Major 17146
Concerto Transcription - unknown source BWV 977C Major 17146
Vivaldi: Violin Concerto op. 3 no. 3 BWV 978F Major 17147
Torelli: Violin Concerto BWV 979B Minor 17147
Vivaldi: Violin Concerto op. 4 no. 1 BWV 980G Major 17148
Marcello: Concerto op. 1 no. 2 BWV 981C Minor 17147
Johann Ernst: Violin Concerto op. 1 no. 1 BWV 982B-flat Major 17148
Concerto Transcription - unknown source BWV 983G Minor 17148+
Johann Ernst: Concerto BWV 984C Major 17148
Telemann: Violin Concerto BWV 985G Minor 17147
Concerto Transcription - unknown source BWV 986G Major 17147
Johann Ernst: Violin Concerto op. 1 no. 4 BWV 987D Minor 17148+

Notebook for Anna Magdalena Bach

Minuet BWV Anh. 113F Major 17253
Minuet (by C. Petzold) BWV Anh. 114G Major 17252
Minuet (by C. Petzold) BWV Anh. 115G Minor 17252
Rondeau: Les Bergeries (by F. Couperin) BWV Anh. 183B-flat Major 17254
Minuet BWV Anh. 116G Major 17253
Polonaise BWV Anh. 117F Major 17254
Minuet BWV Anh. 118B-flat Major 17253
Polonaise BWV Anh. 119G Minor 17253
Chorale: Wer nur den lieben Gott lässt walten BWV 691 A Minor 17254
Chorale BWV 510 F Major 17251
Chorale: Gib dich zufrieden und sei stille BWV 511–512G Minor 17252
Minuet BWV Anh. 120A Minor 17253
Minuet BWV Anh. 121C Minor 17253
March (by C. P. E. Bach) BWV Anh. 122D Major 17252
Polonaise (by C. P. E. Bach) BWV Anh. 123G Minor 17254
March (by C. P. E. Bach) BWV Anh. 124G Major 17253
Polonaise (by C. P. E. Bach) BWV Anh. 125G Minor 17253
Aria: So oft ich meine Tobackspfeife BWV 515 D Minor 17252
Minuet (by G. Böhm) G Major 17252
Musette BWV Anh. 126D Major 17252
March (by C. P. E. Bach) BWV Anh. 127E-flat Major 17254
Polonaise BWV Anh. 128D Minor 17253
Aria: Bist du bei mir (by G. H. Stölzel) BWV 508 E-flat Major 17253
Solo per il cembalo (by C. P. E. Bach) BWV Anh. 129E-flat Major 17255
Polonaise (by J. A. Hasse) BWV Anh. 130G Major 17253
Aria (by J. C. Bach) BWV Anh. 131F Major 17251
Aria: Warum betrübst du dich BWV 516 F Minor 17252
Recitative and Aria: Ich habe genug BWV 82 G Major 17254
Chorale: Shaffs mit mir, Gott BWV 514 C Major 17252
Minuet BWV Anh. 132D Minor 17253
Aria di Giovannini BWV 518 E-flat Major 17254
Chorale: Dir, dir, Jehova, will ich singen BWV 299 B-flat Major 17255
Chorale: Wie wohl ist mir, o Freund der Seelen BWV 517 F Major 17252
Aria: Gedenke doch, mein Geist, zurükke BWV 509 E-flat Major 17253
Chorale: O Ewigkeit, du Donnerwort BWV 513 F Major 17252
Chorale: Jesu, meine Zuversicht BWV 728 C Major 17224

Miscellaneous pieces

Bourrée E Minor -3
Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring BWV 147G Major 17237
Minuet BWV 813 aC Minor 17223
Overture in the French Style BWV 831B Minor 17358+
Allemande BWV 836 G Minor 17204
Minuet BWV 841 G Major 17205
Minuet BWV 842 G Minor 17205
Minuet BWV 843 G Major 17205
Prelude & Fugue BWV 894A Minor 17088+
Chromatic Fantasia & Fugue BWV 903D Minor 17208+
Fantasia & Fugue BWV 904A Minor 17258+
Fantasia & Fugue BWV 906C Minor 17388+
Fantasia BWV 917G Minor 17388+
Fantasia on a Rondo BWV 918C Minor 17388+
Fantasia BWV 919C Minor -6
Prelude BWV 921 C Minor 17137
Prelude (Fantasia) BWV 922A Minor -8+
Prelude & Fugue - on a Theme by Albinoni BWV 923 & 951B Minor 17128+
Fantasia & Fugue BWV 944 A Minor 17148+
Adagio - after BWV 1005 BWV 968 G Major 17258
Italian Concerto BWV 971F Major 17358
Goldberg Variations BWV 988G Major 17418+
Aria Variata BWV 989 A Minor 17098
Capriccio on the Departure of his Most Beloved Brother BWV 992 B-flat Major 17048
Capriccio BWV 993 E Major 17218+
Applicatio BWV 994 C Major 17205

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