Notes and Editorial Reviews
Opus 111 has repackaged several items from its Bach holdings to celebrate the composer's 250th deathday in 2000. One is the brilliant harpsichordist Pierre Hantaï's 1993 recording of the Goldberg Variations. Taking all the repeats (including the ones in the Aria de capo most players avoid), Hantaï rivets your attention by way of impeccable pacing, purposeful ornamentation, subtle registrations, and a brain in every finger. His wide palettes of articulations enhance the distinction and character of Bach's canonic movements, as well as providing color and contrast. What's more, Hantaï's agogic adjustments always bear elements of surprise as they quietly propel the musical argument forward and up. The
crucial 25th Variation is briskly unsentimental here, yet the aria-like right hand lines truly breathe. The engineering is clear and resonant but not too closely miked or unrealistically loud. An absolutely first-class release, worth its weight in Goldbergs.
--Jed Distler, ClassicsToday.com Read less
Works on This Recording
Goldberg Variations, BWV 988 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Pierre Hantaï (Harpsichord)
Written: 1741-1742; Nuremberg, Germany
Date of Recording: 06/1992
Venue: Doopsgezinde Kerk, Haarlem, Netherlands
Length: 77 Minutes 26 Secs.
Notes: Composition written: Nuremberg, Germany (1741 - 1742).
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