During the years when Bach was in the service of the courts of Prince Leopold in Köthen, he had his own orchestra and was contracted to compose a great deal of instrumental music. This gave him an opportunity to try new techniques and to develop his own instrumental style. The six Brandenburg Concertos belongs to these masterpieces which he composed for a small ensemble . The joyously infectious performance of these masterpieces by the Freiburg Baroque Orchestra demonstrates both the pleasure and the highest professional standard that can be reached with period instruments. Their decision to perform without a conductor is therefore quite deliberate, reviving a tradition practised right back in the 18th century.