András Schiff • J S Bach: Clavichord (2CD)
Deluxe 2CD set with detailed booklet.
•• J S BACH: CLAVICHORD WAS OUR FEATURED ALBUM FOR JULY 2023 ••
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After his landmark recording of some of Johann Sebastian Bach’s most important keyboard music, one of the great Bach interpreters of our time turns his attention to the composer’s preferred instrument.
The sound of the clavichord is, says András Schiff, an invitation into “a new world, a quiet oasis in our noisy, troubled times. Thanks to the clavichord I now play and hear Bach differently.” An intimate and personal instrument – “a most gentle creature, ideal for playing alone” – it can also be, as Schiff notes, a demanding and unforgiving teacher. “On the clavichord we have only our fingers at our disposal, they must create the music with the finest gradations of touch.”
The early keyboard works are emphasized here, bringing us closer to the sounds of Bach’s day, and the “cantabile art” of the clavichord. The album opens with the Capriccio sopra la lontananza del fratro dilettissmo, journeys through Inventions and Sinfonias, and concludes with an extraordinary account of the Chromatic Fantasia and Fugue.
On this recording, Schiff’s first on the clavichord, he plays a replica of a 1743 Specken instrument, built by Belgian craftsman Joris Potvlieghe. The album was recorded in the Kammermusik Saal of Bonn’s Beethoven-Haus and produced by Manfred Eicher.
ECM4857948 • Released 2023