Note: I really mean CELLO version! I'm sure I've heard it, but starting to think I imagine it.

It's also called 'Prelude and Fugue No.1 in C Major, BWM 846'.

I believe it's the warm-up piece Bach wrote for his students to prepare for the Well Tempered Clavier, but could be wrong.

  • The Bach Cello Solo No. 1 starts out very like the WTC Prelude No.1. They are not identical. Listen to them back to back and see what you think.
    – Yrag Sreog
    Sep 23, 2021 at 18:42

3 Answers 3


Pieter Wispelwey recorded a version with Richard Egarr on an album called "Gamba Sonatas" for the label Channel Classics.


Wikipedia for The Well-Tempered Clavier lists an Ave Maria by Gounod, based on the Prelude, for piano & cello, but I can't find anything else


I realise this topic is pretty dusty but I personally found the recording by Yo-Yo Ma to be very enjoyable.

  • Artist: Yo-Yo Ma
  • Album: Bach: Cello Suites Nos. 1, 5, 6
  • Title: Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 1 in G Major, BWV 1007: Prélude

Links: - Spotify: https://goo.gl/AJVt8W - iTunes: I'm not allowed to post more links, but you'll find it here.

If you want to see something truly remarkable, check this experiment by Astronaut Don Pettit (twitter.com/astro_pettit) featuring this cello version in space. I have not found another high-quality version of this but on the "SmarterEveryDay" - YouTube channel. While I can recommend the entire video, here's a link to the specific part where the title is played: https://goo.gl/vOS8MU

Best regards, Philipp.

  • 2
    While this is a "Prelude No. 1" so to speak, this is actually a different piece; OP was referring to the first prelude of the Well-Tempered Clavier, whereas this is the first prelude from the six cello suites. Note the BWV number in the OP (846) and the BWV for the cello suite (1007). Apr 13, 2017 at 9:21
  • Still a terrific recording though! Apr 13, 2017 at 9:21

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