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Bach: Goldberg Variations, BWV 988
Johann Sebastian Bach, András Schiff
Bach: Goldberg Variations, BWV 988
Genre: Classical
 
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CD Details

All Artists: Johann Sebastian Bach, András Schiff
Title: Bach: Goldberg Variations, BWV 988
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: ECM
Release Date: 9/30/2003
Genre: Classical
Styles: Chamber Music, Historical Periods, Baroque (c.1600-1750), Classical (c.1770-1830)
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 028947218524

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CD Reviews

Perfect
Musicus | Oslo, Norway | 09/26/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I am astounded by the negative reviews below. I have listened to many versions of the Goldberg variations, but never any better than this. I don't think I ever will be bored by Schiff's performance here. This live-concert is even better than his 1983-interpretation and I don't think it is possible to improve this one. It is relaxing and stimulating at the same time, a feeling of completeness that never is boring.
Moreover, I have never noticed anything wrong about the sound quality and think we use to blame the sound quality when we don't like the way of playing.
By the modern piano, you will of course not get any historically informed baroque music, but I can easily forget this, by thinking of it as pure piano music, valid by the eternal & boundless reason of Bach's musical thinking. So if the listening doesn't bring me back to Bach's era, it gives me something else, not less valuable. I cannot put this on without imagining something very pure, something white, like clean, new snow, white, firm and soft at the same time."
Variations Rediscovered
Gavin Wilson | 06/09/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Mr. Schiff's beautiful, brilliant, powerful performance rediscovers one of the top works of the greatest of musicians. For those of us that for years were used to Mr. Gould's 2 great versions of the Goldberg Variations, this is a unique chance to enjoy this masterpiece in all its freshness and strength all over again; there are many interesting differences between the recordings and the musical approach is definitely original. A must-buy for the lovers of J. S. Bach music."
Intensely Lyrical Bach
Grady Harp | Los Angeles, CA United States | 07/25/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)

"András Schiff is able to make even those who have Bach's glorious GOLDBERG VARIATIONS memorized from numerous other recordings (or having been able to play these extraordinary variations on their own) hear them afresh. Schiff's approach is so intimate, beginning with the statement of the original aria through all the variations until the aria is once again allowed to sing alone, that he makes us feel as though he were sitting at the keyboard in a room occupied only by the artist with us as the only guest. This is transparent Bach, every phrase and variation stated with such clarity and beauty that the fact that these variations are technically difficult is simply submerged in the quality of music that flows from Schiff's hands and heart.

Works as important in music history and in the hallowed place in the heart of millions in the centuries since it was composed are bound to have strong opinions about performance - whether the work should even be played on the piano as opposed to the harpsichord, whether what Glenn Gould attached to these variations are valid or no, etc - and that is unavoidable. What András Schiff accomplishes in this recording is that touch with transcendence that makes all other arguments fade. Yes, there are many superb performances of this work and a legion of recordings that are exceptional, but returning to the very origin - the aria on which the work is based - played in the way Schiff caresses it without smothering it in either sentiment or academia, gives ample proof that the following variations of that little miracle aria will satisfy the way Bach wished them to satisfy. No matter how many recordings you may have of this work, expand your appreciation of it with András Schiff. Grady Harp, July 10"