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Bach: The English Suites

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Détails sur le produit

  • Compositeur: Johann Sebastian Bach
  • CD (27 octobre 2003)
  • Nombre de disques: 2
  • Label: Hyperion
  • ASIN : B0000BX5L4
  • Autres éditions : Téléchargement MP3
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: 218.129 en Musique (Voir les 100 premiers en Musique)
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Liste des titres

Disque : 1

  1. I. prélude
  2. II. allemande
  3. III. courante 1
  4. IV. courante 2
  5. V. sarabande
  6. VI. bourrée 1 & 2
  7. VII. gigue
  8. I. prélude
  9. II. allemande
  10. III. courante
  11. IV. sarabande & les agréments de la même sarabande
  12. V. bourrée 1 & 2
  13. VI. gigue
  14. I. prélude
  15. II. allemande
  16. III. courante
  17. IV. sarabande et les agréments de la même sarabande
  18. V. gavotte 1 & 2
  19. VI. gigue

Disque : 2

  1. I. prélude
  2. II. allemande
  3. III. courante
  4. IV. sarabande
  5. V. menuet 1 & 2
  6. VI. gigue
  7. I. prélude
  8. II. allemande
  9. III. courante
  10. IV. sarabande
  11. V. passepied 1 & 2
  12. VI. gigue
  13. I. prélude
  14. II. allemande
  15. III. courante
  16. IV. sarabande
  17. V. gavotte 1 & 2
  18. VI. gigue

Descriptions du produit

Suites anglaises n°1 BWV806, n°2 BWV807, n°3 BWV808, n°4 BWV809, N°5 BWV810, n°6 BWV811 / Angela Hewitt, piano

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Amazon.com: 7 commentaires
31 internautes sur 35 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Charm over bravura 20 septembre 2005
Par Alan Lekan - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: CD Achat vérifié
According to lore, the "English" in these suites refers to some historical evidence that they were written for "an Englishman of nobility." Perhaps. While there is not so much style of the English in this music, the international flavors of Italy, Germany, Spain and especially France abound in these series of six suites consisting of several contrasting 'dance' movements. The Courantes, Bourrees, Menuets and Gavottes are quintessentially French, the Sarabandes of Spanish origin, the Allemandes from Germany and the French Gigue from Anglo roots in the 'Jig.' While their origins came from dance music of the courts and peasants of the 16th & 17th centuries, the dances of Bach's Suites were composed purely for instrumental, concert purposes.

In her exquisite liner notes, Miss Hewitt summarizes Bach's huge talent for integrating and fusing these diverse, regional dance influences into one grand style: "Bach was able to combine the grace and refinement of French dance music with concerto elements borrowed from the Italians, yet subjecting it all to the German predilection for polyphonic writing at which he was the supreme master. Nowhere is this more beautifully demonstrated that in his six English Suites."

Bach's English Suites are filled with much superbly crafted, complex and memorable music - from the haughtingly beautiful sarabandes to the highly rhythmic preludes and gigues. Unlike the six Partitas or French Suites, each of the English Suites begins with a prelude - but preludes that are quite technical and fast moving and hardly relaxed like those of Bach's WTC. And where the French Suites are more aristrocratic, restrained and elegant overall, the English Suites are definately more virtuostic - somewhat akin to the Partitas and Toccatas at times - but these alternating with the slower and contemplative sarabandes and allemandes. The deeply expressive writing Bach brought to the sarabandes is definately a highlight of the English Suites as is Hewitt's emotionally-emersed and plaintive playing of them.

Suites No. 2 and 6 are perhaps the stars of the set - fantastic compositions that show off the keyboardist's technical virtues that Hewitt plays with dazzle, authority and supreme confidence. Her Suite No. 2 bursts forth with great energy and excitement - even moreso and more multifaceted than Martha Argerich's dynamic reading (DG). Particularly in the opening Prelude and later Bourree, Hewitt shows herself to be a master of drama and conception by her well-chosen, varying dynamics, swells and flutters that add great dimension and excitement to the music. In such kinetic movements, her clean, quicksilver passagework is second to none; and few find such heartfelt, expressive depth in the sarabandes.

I have all of Hewitt's discography and rank the English Suites among my top 3 favorites - both for Bach's superb compositons and Hewitt's dynamic and sensitive playing. Compositions - 5 stars; Performance - 5 stars; Sound - 4 stars.

This set scored a top 3-star rating and "Recommended Recording" citing in the 2005 Penguin Guide. The most articulate review I came across was written for the Bach journal, "The Goldberg," that also summarized mostly my take on this set:

"Angela Hewitt writes of one of the gigues in this set that it should be rendered with "charm rather than bravura", and on another that it requires "clarity, precision, and a sense of line". These are apt descriptions of her own virtues throughout this set. Hewitt's interpretations are thoughtful and detailed, and might seem understated on first hearing. Her tone is consistently beautiful: she never displays the hard-edged, brilliant sonorities which Perahia occasionally exploits to great effect in his set. Most of her tempi are moderate-to-slow. She achieves a seemingly effortless clarity, gently underlining (rather than boldly highlighting) inner lines and motifs.

For all her seeming moderation, Hewitt exploits most of the modern piano's resources, displaying a wide range of articulation, dynamics and colours. She rarely projects immediate contrasts - sudden transition from loud to soft, or from full-toned to delicate; instead, she prefers constant nuances, subtly shifting attention between different strands in the texture, and cumulatively, almost imperceptibly, delineating a movement's progression. Repeats are often varied (including additional ornamentation). Through these subtle means Hewitt projects the different characters of individual dances, as well as those of entire suites - from the radiant serenity of the Fourth Suite to the depth and grandeur of the Sixth.

Another virtue of this set is the liner notes. Hewitt's enthusiasm for these works is conveyed in a sometimes conversational style of writing -- a few sentences read more like an interview transcription than like a written essay. This might bother some readers, though I got used to it fairly quickly. They're both enjoyable and informative, and give some insight into her musical choices as a performer.

The piano's sound, and the recording, are sometimes over-resonant, and occasionally I would have preferred more incisive articulation. But these minor reservations hardly detracted from my enjoyment of these moving performances. This is one of the finer achievements in Hewitt's highly-acclaimed Bach series. Fierce competition from Andras Schiff and Murray Perahia notwithstanding, this might well be the finest set of the English Suites on the piano." Uri Golomb
20 internautes sur 24 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Definitive English Suites 22 février 2004
Par Robert H. Goldman - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: CD
until I heard this new recording, my all time favorite recordings of the English Suites were the harpsichord version on Westminster by Fernando Valenti. Pretty old but this new recording on the modern grand is all the energy, articulation, clarity and brilliance of that set. It is unusual to compare the harpsichord version with a version recorded probably 35 to 40 years later on the concert grand. But what comes out to me from this recent recording is the joy of playing the music by Angela Hewitt and her obvious devotion to the music. It has none of the ponderous playing of so many versions that I have listened to and purchased. These recordings to my mind beat all the competition and it is the best yet in her complete Bach series.
14 internautes sur 17 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Elegant Bach 9 janvier 2005
Par M. Levitt - classical music buff - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: CD
The English Suites are the first of three sets of suites Bach wrote for the keyboard, the others being the French Suites and Partitas.

Of the three sets of suites, the Partitas are perhaps the greatest set, the French the most accessible.

I tend to prefer Bach on piano (to harpsichord). I think the richness of Bach's music comes over better on piano, assuming of course that the pianist is very good in Bach.

Angela Hewitt's set of the English Suites is elegant, songful and pianistic;the more I listen to Hewitt, the more I enjoy her. I think Murray Perahia's set of the English Suites is more personal than Hewitt, very compelling, but not better. Rosalyn Tureck (on VAI) offers an unforgettable, marvelous performance of the English Suite no.3 coupled with superb excerpts of the Well Tempered Clavier, the Italian Concerto etc.

Of Hewitt's Bach recordings I know, the very best are of the Well Tempered Clavier (Books 1 and 2) (try hearing Rosalyn Tureck in them too!).

I think we are fortunate today to have wonderful Bach recordings by Tureck, Hewitt, and Perahia (also Piotr Anderszewski in Bach Partitas 1,3 and 6 on Virgin).
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
rigorous and engaging 28 novembre 2014
Par Stanley Crowe - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: CD
Hyperion produces its usual excellent sound for Angela Hewitt in this fine account of the English Suites. She, along with Perahia and Andras Schiff, has been producing beautiful accounts of Bach's keyboard music since the new century began (and Schiff even before that), and this 2-disc set is no exception. The music here falls easily on the ear -- these are dance movements with a Prelude for each of the six suites, and they require considerable virtuosity. They repay close listening, for all their energy and charm, and close listening here reveals Hewitt's marvelous sense of texture in the voicing of the subordinate melodies and the canonical and fugal developments, her great sense of rhythmic underpinning, and her unexaggerated but effective variety of touch and dynamics. The other day, I put this on my player to accompany my crossword-solving, and it wasn't long before the music won out over the crossword. It might seem that you wouldn't want to sit through all six at a sitting, but they proved so engaging that that was not a problem for me. Rarely has rigor been allied with the composition of music so agreeable, but that's the case here -- and, with Bach, not only here, of course. Recommended.
1 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Performed with love and understanding 10 avril 2013
Par Ms E M Sole - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: CD Achat vérifié
An incredible set. The enclosed notes are just as good as the performance. A goldmine of information and performances of the highest quality. Simply outstanding.
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