best bach choralesA first impression might be of quicker tempi than usual and of a fleetness that challenges us to keep up. This is particularly striking in the potentially murky, homogeneous textures of Nos 3 and 6; but the other, more colourfully scored concertos are just as lucidly done – a triumph of the balancer’s art, obviously, but surely just as much a result of clear-headed thinking on the part of the performers. And then there’s the keyboard poet within the orchestra, who even when playing mezzoforte or piano manages to project a full tone (witness his presence in the tutti afterBrandenburg No 5’s cadenza). The two make a fine match. ‘Es ist nun nichts Verdammliches’ (‘There is now no condemnation’) has surely never enjoyed such a mesmerising volley of declamation and rich illusion over a short space as Gardiner summons, while ‘Trotz dem alten Drachen’ (‘Despite the old dragon’) spits out its irascible consonances only to be disarmingly defied by the elevated purity of ‘in gar sichrer Ruh’ (‘in confident tranquillity’) – all this in contrasting tableaux of ever-surprising emotional impact. Hewitt doesn’t slavishly follow a formula, though. Where Nicholas Mulroy’s Evangelist offers us intense reportage and touchingly personal asides, Ian Bostridge is the master story-teller who surveys all about him, impeccably delivering every nuance of every word. Bach created the Easter Oratorio for Easter Sunday 1725, although some of the music was shrewdly parodied from a secular cantata composed some months previously for the birthday of Duke Christian of Saxe-Weissenfels. Bach didn’t leave many solo concertos, but this one is a gem, easily up there with the best Bach works of all time. On the other end of the spectrum, the peroration offers a luminous solace – and what collective beauty Bach Collegium Japan bring to the heart-stopping ‘Mein Jesu, gute Nacht’ – to the redemption that will follow. Not that technique does not come into it‚ and Kirkby’s allows her to shape vibratoless long notes and phrases with utter security and ravishing vocal quality‚ with only the occasional high note sounding slightly pinched. It’s hardly surprising that great violinists throughout history have paired up for this irresistible double act. The variety of string articulation together with Gibley’s discrete harmonisations further serve both to enliven and to elucidate Bach’s musical arguments. A hint of over-exuberant thickness in the texture of Concerto No 1 is perhaps a reflection of this, but elsewhere it is good to hear playing from the likes of violinist Kati Debretzeni, flautist Katy Bircher and the excellent David Blackadder on trumpet that is bold and confident without straying into coarseness. For the keyboard player, an engagement with Bach is a constant from childhood, and it becomes essential to daily life. The B minor Corrente and D minor Allemande, for example, become more expressive through this subtle phrasing, and her G minor Presto and E major Prelude are not merely mechanically fluent. By contrast, the F major Prelude and Fugue amounts to a masterclass in how to imbue détaché articulation with the utmost colour and character, not to mention trills that are impeccably precise yet never mechanical-sounding. Like Hewitt, he surpasses himself. The close, with its ingeniously compressed lines and the composer’s outrageous sign-off, literally spelling his name (B is B flat and H is B natural), is celebrated in some style by Suzuki. Do you go for a radical interpretation set to make people jump, laugh or recoil in surprise? The first repeat is rather softer, whereas the first repeat of the first variation incorporates various added ornaments, a trend that registers time and again through the course of the performance. With some artists, you have a sense that their personality comes across most strongly in the main structural movements of the French Suites – the opening allemandes, pivotal sarabandes and closing gigues. To do so he had had to evolve new techniques and, intellectually, to delve deeply into the character and inner structure of the music. Gardiner asks for more pinpoint delicacy, quicksilver contrast and lightness than ever and illuminatingly inwardda camera dialoguing between voices. I enthusiastically endorsed a live archival 1984 recording of Chopin’s E minor Concerto in these pages last April. I look forward to Book 2. Note, too, Pobłocka’s swaggering D major Fugue and how each entrance of the D minor Fugue’s exposition is consistently phrased, down to the slight tapering of the trill. Price. Simply glorious. When these four sing together in the choruses, to be joined by four more ‘ripieno’ singers, their sound is pressing and urgent but never hectoring, so that whether representing a crowd baying for blood or a group of chastened or horror-struck sinners, they come across as a gathering of real people rather than a disembodied chorus. Parfois, deux chorals ont le même incipit, seule la tonalité peut changer : le BWV 347 est par exemple en la majeur et le BWV 348 est en si bémol majeur. And yet Perahia’s Bach has plenty going on: you attend to one layer of counterpoint, then return for another and so on, discovering something new each time. Bach’s motets may pay homage to forebears in scale, tone and technique but each one, especially revealed in this vibrant and questing new set, presses for fresh meaning with all the virtuoso means Bach could muster. A chorale prelude includes the melody of the chorale, with added counterpoint. If one’s reflexive default at the prospect of an organ recording – even an exquisitely curated Bach one – is one of dispassionate or nonchalant resistance, this recording is as likely to turn ears as any made. Underpinning so much of Sir John Eliot Gardiner’s approach to Bach is identifying the provenance and essence of dramatic character, ‘mutant opera’ (as Gardiner calls it) found in genres – like the motet – which are not enacted but depend on perceptive rhetorical judgement within a fabric of rolling continuity. How demanding they are. Her rhythmic flexibility (very marked in the Chaconne) may upset some traditionalists, but it gives her readings a thoughtfully spontaneous air, and is always applied to clarify the phrasing. This certainly has the effect of bringing the two parts of the Passion closer together, to the serious benefit of our ears and imaginations. ‘Practise some Bach for me,’ Chopin used to say to his departing pupils as they went through the door. Bach’s St John Passion gains more from the small-ensemble approach, I think, than its big sister, the St Matthew. Flag this item for. Both singers also perform with great effectiveness in the arias, where they are joined by Joanne Lunn (her ‘Ich folge dir gleichfalls’ is a joyous and sure-footed gem) and Clare Wilkinson, whose distinctive alto, straightforward in expression and tellingly connected to her speaking voice, lends fragility to ‘Von den Stricken’. He made these recordings for Archiv between 1961 and 1963 since when they have seldom been out of the catalogue. Complex music – but not complicated. Each section of the Roman Ordinary is envisaged as continuous music, so there are no pregnant pauses between solo and choral movements. Indeed, Herreweghe recently went as far as to say that ‘a groundbreaking reading is not necessary’. Rachel Brown’s flawless flute is an eloquent counterpart to Carolyn Sampson’s enchanting gentleness in the aria “Seele, deine Spezereien”, and Halls controls its pizzicato bass-line with benevolent finesse. Likewise, this significant and richly endowed contribution to the catalogue, whose defining rationale is the exploration of the Oratorio’s joyous and elegant poetic fervour, asks similarly penetrating questions. Whereas the concerto came out of an Italian tradition the suite was, in origin, a sequence of French dances. The fashion these days is to return to Bach’s own transcriptions for keyboard as a repository for some speculative reworkings, and this approach inspires Alina Ibragimova’s varied, committed and poised readings of five solo concertos. The noble Christ of Neal Davies and the deeply felt singing of Roderick Williams complement the kaleidoscope of vocal expression here with their capacity for reflective commentary (‘Mein teurer’ is über-elegant), as does Iesytn Davies in a treasurable ‘Es ist vollbracht’. The support of the Freiburg Baroque Orchestra is total‚ combining tightness of ensemble with such flexibility and sensitivity to the job of accompaniment that you really feel they are ‘playing the words’. The experience seems to have drawn the musicians together and intensified their commitment. Albert Schweitzer denounced the seven keyboard concertos as arrangements ‘often made with quite incredible haste and carelessness’. The G minor Mass represents a clever juxtaposition of conceits with the Magnificat, as Bach revisits choice cantata movements (from BWV72, 102 and 187) and parodies them so successfully – whatever past curmudgeons say – that this lesser-known example from the four so-called “Lutheran Masses” reminds us what they can communicate so specially with such a finely blended and integrated ensemble as the Ricercar Ensemble. The Gavotte en Rondeau is buoyantly dance-like, and in the most natural way she elaborates its final statement (her stylish ornamentation throughout the Partita is utterly convincing). Bach: Kirnberger Chorales Vol. The carefully balanced Sony recordings keep the sound frame tight and lively. Musically it is very fine. These are not entirely modern-instrument performances. Johann Sebastian Bach: Chorales: Was willst du dich, o meine Seele, BWV 425 . The Ouverture (Var 16), the Quodlibet and much else here have an irresistible esprit, a happy conjunction of heart and mind. He was making an observation to a fellow performer about Bach’s restorative and reorienting powers; no doubt, but perhaps alerting all of us to the inspiring breath we can draw from the fertility and humanity of a composer whose imagination and ‘habit of perfection’ (John Eliot Gardiner’s phrase) drove him to discover in music just about everything. Magnificent, Supreme! The deeper delight of it all is that you can encounter subtle new aspects in the familiar works – the E major Concerto intimate, even a little withdrawn, the slow movement of the A minor given a lightly pulsing, march-like momentum – and real revelations in the lesser-known ones. Those who have traced Suzuki’s Bach direction of the last few years, alongside a burgeoning series of enterprising organ volumes, will have noticed a subtle but interesting shift in the realms of emotional risk and dramatic thrust. The pairing is a sensible idea shared with previous discs from Leonhardt, Rilling and Suzuki but that need not dissuade anyone from savouring these outstanding performances. Certainly he can muster all the athleticism, velocity and finesse of a competition winner ready to burst on to the international scene. Nicholas Anderson (April 1994). Its text is a popular subject in the Lutheran tradition: “Has God forsaken me? As we expect from Perahia, everything sounds natural and inevitable. How lucidly Der Geist hilft (that short but compact work written for the funeral of Ernesti, the old Rector of St Thomas’s, in 1729) sets out to reflect the infirmities of man gradually imbued with the intercessions of the Holy Spirit. One of the world’s brightest Baroque ensembles performing with one of the world’s most admired Baroque sopranos sounds an enticing proposition‚ and so it should. Their choice of repertoire, too, feels driven by a desire to celebrate Bach’s life with the violin rather than document it. The BSB’s approach combines the clarity of London Baroque with the elegance of the Purcell Quartet while hinting at the colour of the Palladian Ensemble, which employs recorders and plucked strings as well as violin and gamba on its excellent disc of arrangements of Bach sonatas and chorales. With these impressive performances (on her beautiful-toned Amati) of the Solo Sonatas and Partitas Monica Huggett sweeps other baroque interpretations off the board. Violinists have no need to envy the Cello Suites, since Bach left them an equivalent solo work: the Sonatas and Partitas. As with the keyboard partitas (of which Anderszewski so memorably recorded the First, Third and Sixth for Virgin Classics back in 2001 – 1/03), there’s a sense of Bach demonstrating just how much variety he could introduce into a suite built around the common elements of Prelude, Allemande, Courante, Sarabande and Gigue. Applied with more plain-spoken authority, such emphatic strength of wrist and will rather chews up the Tenth’s preludial bars and the expansive, chorale-fantasia conclusion of the Fifth, though with equal force one senses that, in this case, they had to be so. Although she takes her time over the B flat minor and B minor Fugues, Pobłocka’s strong inner rhythm and subtle organisation of dynamics keep the music alive in every bar. We have also included, where possible, the complete original Gramophone reviews, which are drawn from Gramophone's Reviews Database of more than 40,000 reviews. Indeed, the idea of the Mass as Bach’s ‘summa’ anthology (a work that may never even have been conceived as a single piece) has often inhibited that elusive golden ‘arc’ where the culminating ‘Dona nobis’ feels magnetised to all before it. David Fanning (November 2015). EMBED. There is a lively bounce in her D minor Courante and E major Gigue, and she is splendidly neat in the double of the B minor Courante and in the C major’s finale. It energises his performances and makes them seem to inhabit a state of grace. Which brings me to Igor Levit – and not a moment too soon, you may think. In addition they show awareness of performance practice and what may be appropriate in each instance, with decoration added to ‘second times’ discreetly and with an air of spontaneity, and never to excess. If there was anything Gardiner learnt from the monumental traversal of the cantatas during that great millennium year, it was to take longer-breathed interpretative positions with Bach and to know when to let the singers, especially, and the music do the work. Yet after listening to Sean Shibe’s magnificent new Bach recital, when I reach for comparisons I don’t go to other guitarists. Both recordings include the two Sonatas for Violin and Continuo, BWV1021 and 1023 (for which Podger and Pinnock are joined by a discreet and sympathetic Jonathan Manson on viola da gamba), but Manze and Egarr’s inclusion of the dubious BWV1024 is not echoed here; instead we get two of the three versions of BWV1019 whole, with the glorious extra movement required to make up the remaining version added at the end. So here he is setting off for pastures new with DG; and, honeymoon period or not, the fit looks good with this, his first recording of Bach’s French Suites, pieces that have been in his concert repertoire for decades. To me they work precisely because he teases so much out of each line. The most problematic ‘transcription’ here is the A major (BWV1055), a work that has confounded scholars as to its true provenance, not least owing to its low register and figuration that seems almost deliberately unidiomatic. Along the way, in a deftly balanced presentation of strikingly contrasting essays, Suzuki offers beautifully turned, reflective and buoyant readings of sui generis ‘concert’ works. What’s unusual here is the melding of two different types of keyboard, one sharply transient, the other ductile; and just how their functions dovetail with one another may be heard in the slow movement of the Brandenburg Concerto No 5. Required fields are marked *. This included the concertos of Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninov and, in 1930, he gave a New York recital entirely devoted to contemporary music. By his own admission he had, during those intervening years, discovered 'slowness' or a meditative quality far removed from flashing fingers and pianistic glory. Levit doesn’t disappoint. Sample what he does with the Fifth Suite’s bustling Bourrée, glistening and playful. The way he has considered the touch and dynamic of every phrase means that these are readings that constantly impress with fresh details each time you hear them. This is Bach-playing to listen to every day, fresh, spry and well modulated. On the evidence of this powerful, superbly framed and exceptionally judged account, Masaaki Suzuki may instead have reached a point where, over decades of intensely dedicated Bach performance, a revisiting simply became a necessary rite of passage – as it has for many before him. Unsurprisingly, it reflects the increased playing standards of 25 years of period-instrument growth. ‘When in trouble, play Bach’ – wise advice from Edwin Fischer to a pupil. Eisenach 1685 - Leipzig 1750 . The majority of the chorales here are given their own page for easy viewing and reading. The sonorities of full homophonic chords concluding the grandest choruses are thrilling, whereas the densely polyphonic choral passages always possess clarity and logic thanks to the disciplined interplay of the singers. Can you ever speak in elevated, grandiose terms about a classical guitarist? While he has only recorded the work once before, in 1985, performances of the work have peppered his career in all four corners of the globe. This is a glorious disc. Graphic Violence ; Graphic Sexual Content ; texts. It starts with peerless choral singing, the trumpet-led movements bolted into an unerring tactus and purring through the gears; the ‘Et exspecto’ with its luminous lead-in is quite miraculous, as is the shining portal of the Sanctus. Harpsichord or piano? Johann Sebastian Bach: Chorales: Was mein Gott will, das g’scheh’ allzeit (Cantata, BWV 103) 30. Small changes in level between some works are easily adjusted. QUICK LINKS TO THE CHORALE TABLES: by Tune, Date, Liturgical Occasion, Meter & Time Signature, Key, NLGB A spiral–bound Dahn Edition of the Bach Chorales is available! While it’s easy enough for the keyboard to stand alone, string instruments have a harder time of it. If a finer piano recording comes my way this year I shall be delighted, but frankly also astonished. Turning to Book 2, you could hardly imagine a more seraphic utterance in No 3, later contrasted with the most skittish allegro reply. It is a series that was started long before cycles and integrales became the fashion and it stands to outlive many of the cycles that have come and gone during the last two decades. Casals had hesitated for 35 years before committing to disc these works – long regarded as unplayable, and never performed in their entirety – which he had discovered at the age of 13 and worked on for 12 years before playing them to an astonished public. But the extraordinarily resonant sound he makes is probably less to do with the instruments than with the playing itself, which is warm, expansive, generous and friendly. And how Anderszewski can dance – at least at the keyboard – in a movement such as the Prelude of the Third Suite, urged into life through subtle dynamics, voicings, articulation and judicious ornamentation. Indeed, naturalness and emotional honesty are what emerge from this tight-knit and perfectly paced ensemble Passion, in which Bach’s complex succession of recitatives, arias, choruses and chorales has surely seldom sounded so convincingly of a piece. Damien Guillon is a commanding presence, with a quality of sound that carries both line and text with purpose and panache (listen to the opening of Part 2 as an exceptional example). chorale, though other sources were regularly consulted. But, as I say, Hantai is careful to avoid anything in the nature of superficiality. The Fugue from the above-mentioned D minor is a case in point: the glistening parallel motion over the pedal at 3'20", often a bloated gesture, enticingly holds back to set up the rich-textured gravitas that follows. Although an excellent one-voice-per-part version is nothing new, Butt’s insightful direction and scholarship, integrated with the Dunedin’s extremely accomplished instrumental playing and consort singing, amount to an enthralling and revelatory collective interpretation of the Mass in B minor – perhaps the most probing since Andrew Parrott’s explosive 1985 version (Virgin, 8/86). Ewa Pobłocka’s name first came to my attention back in 1980, when she tied for fifth place in that year’s Warsaw International Chopin Competition, and Deutsche Grammophon issued a selection of her performances from that event on a bygone LP. This truly astonishing performance was recorded in 1981, 26 years after Gould's legendary 1955 disc. Rinaldo Alessandrini and Concerto Italiano have gone for the latter approach and succeeded brilliantly. Bryce Morrison (August 1993). Butt makes a nice point in his booklet-note about how Bach’s Passion performances would have brought together in one project local singers of all abilities, from the soloists to the ‘motet choir’ to members of the congregation; and if his aim here has been to position this in the listener’s imagination and suggest the element of inclusive community that any Passion performance ought to have, well, it works for me. The Aria's return, too, is overwhelming in its profound sense of solace and resolution. The latter’s wonderful ‘Aus Liebe’ reveals both a ravishing suspension of belief and pungent discipleship. From the profound contemplative quality of the G major Sarabande or the C minor Allemande to the zest of the C major Bourree, the breadth and grandeur of the D minor Suite's Prelude and the gravity of its Sarabande, the lightness of the E flat Allemande and Bourrees or the C minor Gavotte, the raptness of the C minor Sarabande, and the lucidity of thought behind the elaborate D major Allemande, these performances remain the classic yardstick by which all later ones must be judged.The digitally remastered transfers from the original 78s, yielding an astonishingly clean ambience to the cello, represent another technical triumph for Keith Hardwick; but listeners with acute ears will notice that the Courante of the E flat Suite and the Gavotte of the C minor were recorded at a slightly sharper pitch than the movements preceding them. It is difficult to single out details of this recording for comment; there just seems to be such a tremendous feeling of overall ‘rightness’ to it. At times Perahia’s imagination in repeats arguably betokens a fraction more wisdom. Once upon a time the bravery of minimal forces tackling this repertoire was ridiculed by sniffy sceptics. But in the grip of its conceits and its virtuoso executancy, captured in the strikingly immediate recorded sound of LSO St Luke’s, this High Mass joins a distinguished discography at high table. Maybe the finale of Sonata No 2 seems rather frantic and the wonderful Adagio ma non tanto of No 3 a touch lumpy, but there really is not much else to criticise. Forget it. Gramophone is brought to you by Mark Allen Group Here you will search in vain for the sort of muddles or confusions that would sometimes plague his performances (evidence of his proud boast that he did little practice). It is as if all the work that Watkin has ever done on these pieces has been absorbed absolutely and then reproduced in a performance that is able to be completely original in its voice at the same time as never producing a phrase that jars in its unsubtlety, or presents an ego that overarches the music. Commenting that it is impossible to know the precise chronology of the Toccatas‚ Hewitt plays what she calls ‘an arbitrary sequence’‚ modestly aiming for a ‘satisfactory recital’. Now he confirms his appetite for the big entrance with three monuments to variation form, each rooted in its own century, yet all united by the harnessing of maximum variety, maximum discipline. Listen to the gorgeous conversational quality in the F sharp major Prelude, as if Pobłocka’s hands were a pair of chamber music partners. Even when judged in relation to other top-ranking piano recordings of Bach (among the most recent, Goode, Hewitt, Schiff and Anderszewski) this CD strikes me as exceptional. There is plenty of room for the music student to write in their own notes and analysis. Less abandon than Koopman, perhaps, but this is supremely refined playing and articulates the ambitions of an exceptionally distinguished project. Following the overwhelming popularity of our lists of the 50 greatest Mozart recordings and 50 greatest Beethoven recordings, we are proud to present 50 of the finest recordings of JS Bach's music. John Butt’s essay is an accessible commentary, narrated with a friendly authority that bespeaks his extensive academic and performing experience. In terms of pianistic lineage, Ólafsson combines the fantasy of Maria João Pires and Martha Argerich with the contrapuntal élan of Piotr Anderszewski. Above all, Fournier's Bach playing is crowned with an eloquence, a lyricism and a grasp both of the formal and stylistic content of the music which will not easily be matched. Admirers will of course have heard Argerich in the Second Partita, on the wing, so to speak, in a superlative live performance dating from 1978-79 (and with the Bouree from the Second English Suite for an encore) on EMI. You may choose us too for relevant information – yes, we offer 100% legitimate data for you to consider before choosing the best 371 bach chorales in 2020. Yet it’s the soloist’s unerring focus and resolute direction which see her flying through the D minor Concerto (BWV1052) with magnificent bravura. Tracks 6 and 7 (the E major’s finale and the A major’s opening Allegro) provide cheering examples of Perahia’s buoyant way with Bach’s faster music. All told, the Inventions and Sinfonias in Fellner’s hands rank alongside the catalogue’s strongest piano versions (including Gould, Schiff, Koroliov, Hewitt and Peter Serkin), and benefit from ECM’s superior, state-of-the-art engineering. Certainly, the Mass in B minor. The solo movements are also bursting with personality, soprano Anna Zander delivering a robustly fluent “Et exultavit” and her counterpart, Maria Keohane, a sensually captivating “Quia respexit”, whose oboe d’amore obbligato dovetails her lines with imploring beauty. The new recording for the Monteverdi Choir’s own label is a live concert recording, with all the soloists except the Evangelist and Christus drawn from the ranks of the chorus. Little more need be said except that Hantai has taken note of Bach's autograph corrections to the text published in Nuremberg in 1741 or 1742 by Balthasar Schmid. He brings considerable character to the theme of the Aria variata, tending to choose faster tempos than Angela Hewitt (Hyperion, 10/04), to thrilling effect in Variations 2, 7 and 9, while Var 6 has a limpid beauty. He stressed the dance basis of the movements; and his vitality, rhythmic flexibility (to clarify the shape of phrases) and tonal nuance, and the vigour and variety of his bowing, still leap from the discs to impress the listener. This performance demands to be heard. But such fine nuances only emerge in the dutiful process of comparison, rather than in the wholly absorbing experience of Levit traversing another musical peak. If the strumming lute can seem a touch overbearing, the ‘Frenchified’ turns, manners and whims bring a delectable quality throughout. Lindsay Kemp (April 2019), Alina Ibragimova vn Arcangelo / Jonathan Cohen. Everything here is energy, though the exuberance is of the grounded kind that never gets out of hand. Or the Anglaise of Suite No 3, which is more unbuttoned in Perahia’s hands than in Angela Hewitt’s precisely imagined account. Here, as elsewhere, her discipline is no less remarkable than her unflagging brio and relish of Bach’s glory. I’m not sure I’ve ever heard the reconstructed concertos sound so convincing (especially the D minor), the trio sonatas go at a thrilling lick that surely no organ could keep up with and the sinfonias simply gleam. Johann Sebastian Bach (31 March 1685 – 28 July 1750) would probably be astounded at his reputation as one of the greatest composers – perhaps the greatest composer – of all time. A superb pair of discs. Some have more consistent line-ups of soloists, equally impressive choirs (of varying sizes) and comparably strong artistic direction. Donald Francis Tovey observes:Counterpoint, the art deﬁned by Sir Fr e deric kGor eOusele yasthat of ’combining melodies’. Alongside the concerto, the other genre in vogue in Bach’s time was the orchestral suite (or “overture” as he called it). Bryce Morrison (October 2002). So we should also pay tribute to Perahia’s longtime producer Andreas Neubronner, engineer Martin Nagorni and king among piano whisperers, technician Ulrich Gerhartz. In Concerto No 2 the concertante quartet of David Blackadder (trumpet), Pamela Thorby (recorder), Alexandra Bellamy (oboe) and Cecilia Bernardini (violin) play with an airy fluidity, with graceful natural trumpet leaving room for recorder and oboe in the limelight. A similar sequence follows Part 1, and Part 2 is prefaced by another organ chorale. Wednesday, January 6, 2021, 50 of the finest JS Bach recordings available, complete with the original Gramophone reviews and an exclusive playlist. In fact the effect here is truly meditative. Where other practitioners offer regular accents and a perhaps over-cautious traversal, tethered to the notes, Levit never fails to project a commanding overview – an aerial perspective, almost – in addition to the detail of phrasing and articulations and the nooks and crannies of melodic lines. Rob Cowan (May 2001), Angela Hewitt pf Australian Chamber Orchestra / Richard Tognetti. 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