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András Schiff
Johann Sebastian Bach
Six Partitas

András Schiff piano
 
CD 1

Partita V in G major BWV 829
Praeambulum
Allemande
Corrente
Sarabande
Tempo di Minuetta
Passepied
Gigue

Partita III in a minor BWV 827
Fantasia
Allemande
Corrente
Sarabande
Burlesca
Scherzo
Gigue

Partita I in B-flat major BWV 825
Praeludium
Allemande
Corrente
Sarabande
Menuet I
Menuet II
Gigue

Partita II in c minor BWV 826
Sinfonia
Allemande
Courante
Sarabande
Rondeau
Capriccio

CD 2

Partita IV in D major BWV 828
Ouverture
Allemande
Courante
Aria
Sarabande
Menuet
Gigue

Partita VI in e minor BWV 830
Toccata
Allemanda
Corrente
Air
Sarabande
Tempo di Gavotta
Gigue

Recorded live September 2007

ECM New Series 2001
 
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Following last year’s completion of his highly-praised Beethoven cycle András Schiff returns to Bach with a superb interpretation of the six “Partitas”, recorded live in September 2007 at Neumarkt Reitstadl one of the best piano music venues in Eurpoe. The cycle, which in 1731 was the first group of works to be published by Bach himself, represents a unique stylistic synthesis of the suite form with a particular emphasis on most varied and imaginative opening movements. In his 1802 biography of Bach, Nikolaus Forkel famously wrote that “such splendid compositions for the clavier had not been seen or heard before… so brilliant, harmonious, expressive and constantly novel are they.” Compared to his London studio recording of 1983 this second rendering on disc demonstrates Schiff’s stylistic development towards more freedom, sonic depth and sheer pleasure of phrasing. The rather unorthodox sequence of partitas – 5 – 3 – 1 – 2 – 4 – 6 – draws an ascending line of keys leading from G major to e minor.