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“Seeing that we enjoy Bach and Mozart on a modern piano, should we demur at their music being played on an equally anachronistic consort of viols? Leaving aside the argument advanced in Laurence Dreyfus's note that much viol consort music was fugal in texture anyway, the fact is that the contrapuntal lines here emerge with great clarity and with a subtlety of timbre, articulation and dynamics beyond even the ablest keyboard player, thanks to Phantasm's accomplished and expressive performances.
The group offers the first 11 Contrapuncti, without the canons or mirror fugues, but plus the final uncompleted chef d'oeuvre that was to have crowned the project; Phantasm's playing offers new insights into Bach's prodigious mind. In his transcriptions for string quartet of fugues from the '48', Mozart – who, it's reported, constantly had Bach's volume lying open on his piano – made a few small adjustments to details of rhythm and part-writing; and the process also fired him to write several fugues of his own, including the one in G minor (for piano solo or duet) here. Phantasm, despite a slight tendency to hurry, brings a smile to the lips by its intonation, precision and, above all, musicality.” Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 2010
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Bach arranging & arranged
Fugues from Das wohltemperierte Klavier, K405
arranged by J.S. Bach on the text of Psalm 51: Tilge, Höchster, meine Sünden, BWV 1083
Rachel Elliott (soprano), Sally Bruce-Payne (alto)
J.S. BACH Fugues from the Well-tempered Clavier II, arranged for string quartet:
A minor [G minor, BWV8201;885]* , G major [A flat major, BWV8201;886]* , C minor [B flat minor, BWV891]^, C major [B major, BWV892]*
* arranged by Rodolfo Richter for The Bach Players, ^ arranged by W.A. Mozart, completed by Abbé M. Stadler
What happens when great composers arrange each other’s works? J.S. Bach gave Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater a new text and a new viola part, making a fresh piece that speaks both of Germany and Italy. Mozart gave string players the pleasure of playing fugues from the Well-tempered Clavier II . Fresh arrangements by The Bach Players complete the set of all the four-part fugues from this work.
“central to this beautifully put-together disc is Bach’s exquisite arrangement of Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater. Bach sets to it a German version of Psalm 51, ‘Tilge Höchster meine Sünden’, which is sung here by soprano Rachel Elliott and alto Sally Bruce-Payne, sparring delicately over the velvet accompaniment of the full ensemble. Bach improves Pergolesi – and Mozart’s enclosing take is due homage.” Classic FM , February 2009
“The performance is a delight from start to finish... In short, no rival version that I have heard on disc, and there are several, matches this one. Well-judged tempos and an ideal recorded sound set the seal on a particularly satisfying issue. To hell with the credit crunch, go and buy it, at once.” Nicholas Anderson, International Record Review
“The performance is a delight from start to finish… In short, no rival version that I have heard on disc, and there are several, matches this one. Well-judged tempos and an ideal recorded sound set the
seal on a particularly satisfying issue. To hell with the credit crunch, go and buy it, at once.” Nicholas Anderson, International Record Review
Usually despatched in 3 - 4 working days.
A fascinating CD coupling inspired arrangements by Mozart of fugues by J. S. Bach with Haydn quartets that feature a fugal movement and music by their contemporaries Werner and Albrechtsberger, highly esteemed by Emperor Joseph II, who even opened a special department for fugal forms in the imperial library in Vienna.
‘ . . . it is well known that changes in taste have very little influence on the fugue. For this reason, lovers of music for quartet need not be afraid. . . to find in these works of art anything that might be offensive to the tastes of our own time . . . precisely because they are written in a spirit that never goes out of fashion . . .’ Allgemeine musikalische Zeitung, 1808
Usually despatched in 4 - 5 working days.
Bach, Handel & Mozart: arrangements for piano and wind
Didier Malbec (harpsichord)
Ensemble de Hautbois Philippe Pelissier (Double-reed quartet of Paris)
All works arranged for piano and wind
Usually despatched in 2 - 3 working days.