Bach: Partitas Nos. 2, 3 & 4

Bach: Partitas Nos. 2, 3 & 4

by Murray Perahia
     
 

Murray Perahia's Bach recordings are low-key, somewhat in the vein suggested by Bach's modest use of the words "Clavier-Übung," keyboard exercise, to describe the partitas played here in their published form. There is none of the eccentricity of Glenn Gould and none of the hard monumentality of See more details below

Overview

Murray Perahia's Bach recordings are low-key, somewhat in the vein suggested by Bach's modest use of the words "Clavier-Übung," keyboard exercise, to describe the partitas played here in their published form. There is none of the eccentricity of Glenn Gould and none of the hard monumentality of András Schiff. Perahia is content to be straightforward and simple, choosing his points of emphasis with care. At first his playing, like Bach's title, seems too modest, but soon you realize that for sheer clarity in polyphonic textures he is unexcelled. The three partitas presented on this program may seem an unlikely trio (and presumably are part of a larger group of recordings to come), but they make a convincing whole that few performers have yet thought of. They embody progressive departure from the conventional structures of the French-style suite of dances that provided Bach's basic blueprint. Hear Perahia's treatment of the building excitement of the Courante of the "Partita No. 3 in A minor, BWV 827," track 9, all the more effective because it is so confidently controlled. Perahia delivers the payoff with the big Allemande of the "Partita No. 4 in D major, BWV 828," whose nine-minute span vanishes into the flow of time. Perahia's self-effacing style is never going to appeal to everyone, but for those who like it, it has rarely been as effective as it is here. Sony's German engineering should be especially noted; the resonances of the lower ranges of Perahia's piano, so carefully sculpted by the artist, emerge with their colors perfectly reproduced.

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Editorial Reviews

Gramophone - Jed Distler
The pianist's vibrant and variegated sonority perpetually sings, while his contrapuntal acumen leaves no detail unconsidered nor unduly fussed over.... A release to savor and cherish.
San Francisco Chronicle - Steven Winn
[Perahia's] command of sonorities, dynamics and phrasing makes you hear the piano as an ideal Baroque instrument. These perfectly judged accounts of three partitas are full of persuasive insights and beguiling subtleties.... Perahia just gets better and better.
Daily Telegraph - Matthew Rye
[Perahia's] studies at the harpsichord have encouraged a lightness of touch in his piano playing here, even in the more solid movements such as the Second Partita's opening Sinfonia, where clarity and litheness seem more important to him than over-pedalled severity.
Raleigh-Durham News & Observer - David Perkins
Perahia achieves an exquisite balance between pianistic sensitivity -- enough pedal to give the sound a glow, enough rubato to make a phrase "sing" -- and disciplined attention to the Baroque form and energy of Bach's music.

Product Details

Release Date:
03/18/2008
Label:
Sony Classics
UPC:
0886972269726
catalogNumber:
722697
Rank:
9766

Related Subjects

Tracks

  1. Partita for keyboard No. 2 in C minor, BWV 826 (BC L2)  - Johann Sebastian Bach  - Murray Perahia  - Udo Titz  - Sebastian Treytl
  2. Partita for keyboard No. 3 in A minor, BWV 827 (BC L3)  - Johann Sebastian Bach  - Murray Perahia  - Udo Titz  - Sebastian Treytl
  3. Partita for keyboard No. 4 in D major, BWV 828 (BC L4)  - Johann Sebastian Bach  - Murray Perahia  - Udo Titz  - Sebastian Treytl

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