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Bach: Works And Transcriptions For Guitar

Bach,J.s. / Shimizu
Release Date: 12/14/2010 
Label:  Msr   Catalog #: 1302   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Azusa Shimizu
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 0 Hours 56 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews



BACH Partita in a, BWV 997. Toccata in e , BWV 914. Sinfonia in f , BWV 795. Suite in E , BWV 1006a Azusa Shimizu (gtr) MSR 1302 (56:09)


Bach keyboard works played on the guitar? Sure. Why not? Bach was a master transcriber himself, often taking his own compositions and rearranging them for various Read more combinations of instruments, in addition to the works of other composers, which he often reset—from solo organ works to keyboard concerti. The E-Minor Toccata is one such piece that was a staple of the piano and harpsichord literature for much of the 20th century. How refreshing it is to hear it in a new way. Azusa Shimizu does a good job of revealing the many facets of this multisectional work—from the improvisatory nature of the opening to the intricate counterpoint of the fugue. Though I wish for a bit more momentum in her slightly static interpretation of the fugue, overall, this is beautiful playing. The F-Minor Sinfonia is particularly haunting in the soft, even muted way in with she begins this little gem. Her ability to delineate the voices is breathtaking and her extremely soft and heartfelt way with the closing chord in F Major resonates in one’s ear for long after the piece has ended. Both the E-Major Suite and A-Minor Partita are best in their moments of simplicity (the preludes, the A-Minor’s Sarabande) or in certain instances of liveliness (the E-Major’s Gigue). Her playing can sometimes sound stagnant in some of the dance movements, though; here they sound bogged down. The fugue in the A Minor, in particular, can sometimes lose its sense of grandiosity in the foursquare way in which it is approached. Overall, though, there is some very fine playing here, one that will make a nice addition to the other Bach guitar recordings in my collection—from John Williams’s spirited account of the lute suites (Sony 78738) to Julian Bream’s formal clarity and energetic playing in various works, including the D-Minor Chaconne (also a transcription!) and the Prelude, Fugue and Allegro, BWV 998 (Deutsche Grammophon 001134302).


FANFARE: Scott Noriega
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Works on This Recording

1.
Partita for Lute in C minor, BWV 997 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Azusa Shimizu (Guitar)
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1737-1741; Leipzig, Germany 
Venue:  St. Lawrence Church, West Wycombe, Engla 
Length: 21 Minutes 2 Secs. 
2.
Toccata in E minor, BWV 914 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Azusa Shimizu (Guitar)
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1708; Weimar, Germany 
Venue:  St. Lawrence Church, West Wycombe, Engla 
Length: 3 Minutes 4 Secs. 
3.
Three-Part Invention no 9 in F minor, BWV 795 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Azusa Shimizu (Guitar)
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1723; Cöthen, Germany 
Venue:  St. Lawrence Church, West Wycombe, Engla 
Length: 4 Minutes 28 Secs. 
4.
Partita for Lute in E major, BWV 1006a by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Azusa Shimizu (Guitar)
Period: Baroque 
Written: after 1720; Germany 
Venue:  St. Lawrence Church, West Wycombe, Engla 
Length: 18 Minutes 3 Secs. 

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