25 internautes sur 27 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
- Publié sur Amazon.com
This is a superlative recording of one of the most famous pieces by Kapellmeister Johann Sebastian Bach played by the best Bach interpreter, Mr. Glenn Gould. I value this recording so much that I often find myself avoiding listening to it too much because this recording is like a beautiful sunset, which should only be fully enjoyed when all the conditions are ideal. It is not a background music. I have owned this recording for many years, but I decided that I have no choice but to write a review now after reading a very gratuitous and childish review below by Mr. Bruno. While I do not care about the provincialism of others, I was very worried that some novices reading that review might be mislead and coerced away from this most delightful recording and miss the experience of a lifetime.
For those that do not know, Glenn Gould is considered to be the best Bach interpreter of this century by the vast majority of non-professional listeners and professional artists. Gould's performances have become a standard; so much so that any new Bach performance on a piano is almost immediately compared to Gould. True, there are some critics who believe that Gould uses too much staccato in some of Bach's compositions, but nevertheless, if we remember that most of these pieces Bach had composed for a harpsichord, which is a staccato instrument by nature, we can understand why Gould would select such a radical approach.
Bach's fugues are very complex and often the performer is faced with a challenge to communicate three, four, or even more melodies simultaneously. A romantic, legato performance hopelessly mixes all the notes together drowning any possibility of expressing all these melodies at the same time - at best, some of the melodies go into the background, e.g., the left hand notes, while other melodies, like the notes for the right hand, come to the surface. Only a very scrupulous listening can reveal these melodies buried in the background. What makes so many people to fall in love with Glenn Gould is his uncanny ability to not only express all the melodies distinctly at the same time, but also to bring his left and right hand notes together into a mellifluous, sometimes tempestuous, freely flowing melody. Everything is right there for you to listen to.
Even if you are one of those harsh critics who absolutely cannot accept a staccato performance, I am sure that you will still like this performance because the recording flows so well that one can't argue that Glenn uses too much staccato. I am not a listener who is limited only to Gould. I embrace many different styles of performances simply because no one interpretation is the "only way." If you are very interested to hear how else these compositions can be performed, such as more romantically, I recommend you listen to these same compositions played by Sviatoslav Richter, Murray Perahia, and Gustav Leonhardt (this is a harpsichord version). All three do an excellent job. You will also have the opportunity to compare these performances to Glenn Gould's interpretation. Additionally, I would recommend that you hear these concertos being performed on a violin (by Rachel Podger or Itzhak Perlman) and organ (by Karl Richter). After so many years and so many different recordings I have realized that Gould's performance is the absolute best. It doesn't mean there aren't other excellent recordings; it means that Glenn adds something extra to the performance that somehow when you combine those extra features with the genius of Johann Sebastian Bach, you suddenly seem to reinvent one of the greatest works of arts of the Western Civilization.
This recording is indeed breathtaking. I have read several books on Bach's works and his biography and I have to say that his genius is divine, yet I am not even religious! Mozart and Beethoven, among numerous other composers, have revered Bach and learned from him as well. At least for me, there has never been any composer as powerful as Herr Bach. If you are new to Bach, this recording is a great starting point. Make sure that you continue your reveling odyssey and listen to Bach's other greatest works - Goldberg Variations (Gould, 1955 and 1981), Violin Concertos (Podger), The Art of Fugue (Gould, Sokolov, or Emerson Quartet), Brandenburg Concertos (Alessandrini or Pinnock), Well-Tempered Klavier (Gould, Richter), and many more. If you have any questions about Bach and his performances, feel free to contact me (ekhekoyan at yahoo.com).