Texte paru dans: / Appeared in:

GRAMOPHONE ( 08/ 2019)
Pour s'abonner / Subscription information


Code-barres / Barcode : 7318599923475


Outil de traduction (Très approximatif)
Translator tool (Very approximate)

Reviewer:  Peter Quantrill

If you play the first variation of the Goldbergs on strings it resembles the opening of the Third Brandenburg. Or perhaps it should at any rate, and does in most recordings of Dmitry Sitkovetsky’s arrangement, especially his own (such as the Orfeo album, 8/86, with Maisky on cello).

Trio Zimmermann think otherwise; they play each note detached, and with pure tone. Whatever the intent, the effect is of an anachronistic viol consort with the tools but not the inclination to join the dots. The bass line of Var 4 cries out for a rustic swing – which Maisky supplies, little by little, on his DG recording led by Julian Rachlin (4/07). I’m afraid I find the Zimmermanns rather po-faced and humourless by comparison, however immaculate their finish and airy their recording. Where their version flourishes in a string-specific way is in the matter of ornamentation – not only the kind of keyboard-friendly semiquaver turns and trills of Var 5 but also delicious, slow French appoggiaturas (Var 3 and 7), grace notes that might be harder to tuck under the fingers on a harpsichord (Var 13), and the kind of exquisite slow suspensions that are written into the fabric of the ‘Black Pearl’, Var 25.

Indeed, both of these expressive high points receive hushed and meditative readings somewhat isolated from the gracefully turned dexterity on show elsewhere. The Couperin-esque shading of Var 26 works beautifully on its own terms, for example, and one can imagine the performance as a whole delighting a court audience at Versailles – but at the expense of Bach’s own, coarser strain of humour. Cabbages and turnips (Var 30)? Purple-sprouting broccoli, more like.

Sélectionnez votre pays et votre devise en accédant au site de
Presto Classical
(Bouton en haut à droite)

Pour acheter l'album
ou le télécharger

To purchase the CD
or to download it

Choose your country and curency
when reaching
Presto Classical
(Upper right corner of the page)


Cliquez l'un ou l'autre bouton pour découvrir bien d'autres critiques de CD
 Click either button for many other reviews