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Subtitles: English, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Chinese (simplified and traditional), Russian, Japanese
Angela Hewitt shares the inspiration and experience behind her award-winning playing in an illustrated lecture that explains the technical and practical steps essential for performing Bach on the piano.
Angela Hewitt is a phenomenal artist who has established herself at the highest level over the last few years not least through her superb, award-winning recordings for Hyperion. Completed in 2005, her eleven-year project to record all the major keyboard works of Bach has been described as ‘one of the record glories of our age’ and has won her a huge following. She has been hailed as ‘the pre-eminent Bach pianist of our time’ and ‘nothing less than the pianist who will define Bach performance on the piano for years to come’ (Stereophile). Now for the first time she appears on a 2-DVD set. In the first disc, she conducts a ‘masterclass’, discussing all the challenges, possible pitfalls and delights in performing Bach on the piano. The second disc features Hewitt live in concert. This is an unmissable release.
“Here we are presented with a lengthy lecture, and a recital. Paradoxically you probably learn more watching the recital (Hewitt's infallible finger control is mesmerising) than you do from the lecture which is full of sound common sense but filmed in a style that crosses the Queen's Christmas Message with Delia Smith's 'How to Boil an Egg'.”
“Angela Hewitt has been giving illustrated lecture recitals on Bach performance for some time but not, on this showing, direct to camera. Though she becomes more fluent and confident over the 148 minutes, for most of the time she resembles the Queen delivering her Christmas message to the Commonwealth. Is she reading off an autocue? Her measured and articulated delivery with nary an 'um' or 'er' suggests that she is; if she isn't, then it sounds as though she is, and reading a script which, moreover, has been written to be published in a book rather than spoken aloud. Its seven chapters are divided into 36 sections, each one fading to black-out and up again: usefully cued but tiresome to watch. The whole exercise would have been better on CD. What Hewitt has to say is full of wisdom and perspicacity, liberally illustrating the talk at her Fazioli piano (it is filmed in the Fazioli factory). But who is it aimed at? The conservatory student (useful), the teacher (instructive), the amateur Bach player (daunting) or the general public (illuminating but esoteric)? Disc two is a live recital filmed in the Fazioli concert hall where Hewitt puts into practice what she has been preaching: her poise, clarity of voicing, spontaneity, wonderful finger legato and palpable joy in performing these works is a masterclass in itself.”
“Illuminating lectures rather regally delivered but the playing is spellbinding.”
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