Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006

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Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006

Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006


Cecylia Arzewski (violin)

Cecylia Arzewski was concertmaster of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra from 1990 -2008, and was previously a member of the Boston Symphony, becoming the BSO's Assistant Concertmaster. After retiring from her position with the Atlanta Symphony, she decided to devote her time to the recording of the present project, Bach's monumental Sonatas and Partitas.

“Arzewski takes her place among the top ranks for her disciplined appraoch and almost effortless technique...[she] maintains a faultless pulse behind a sensitive ebb and flow of rhythmic detail in the dances...A match for modern-instrument recordings, and admirably recorded.” BBC Music Magazine, December 2012 ****

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Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006

Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006


Gilles Colliard (violin)

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Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006

Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006


Suyoen Kim (violin)

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Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin

Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin


Bach, J S:

Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006

Pisendel:

Sonata for Violin Solo in A minor


After The Four Seasons, the Bach violin concertos, and the sonatas of Matteis, Amandine Beyer presents her vision of the Sonatas and Partitas, one of the pillars of the repertoire, coupled with the solo sonata of Pisendel, the best-known German violinist of his generation, who met Bach at Weimar.

“These are fresh, spirited, finely judged performances. The tempi of the fast movements never seem too quick, though they often prove faster than those of other period players, and the slow movements are superbly paced...Beyer never plays on the listener's emotions but instead maintains a sliver of detachment that, in the context of her stylish performances, seems appropriate for music that is almost 300 years old...An enormously enjoyable set.” Gramophone Magazine, March 2012

“Beyer's playing is outstanding for her consistently sensitive delivery - finely chiselled in details but always organic with a keen ear for the music's broader harmonic direction. Although it invites and deserves close attention it does not overtly seek it...Her playing is at its finest...where it is at its most self-effacing: in the ear- and finger-defying polyphony Bach frequently demands from his player.” International Record Review, February 2012

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Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006

Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006


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Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006

Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006


David Juritz (violin)

In 2007 I left the secure and familiar surroundings of the concert hall to fulfil a long-held ambition; to busk my way around the world, funding my travels by playing Bach’s music for unaccompanied violin on street corners wherever I found myself. My goal was to launch “Musequality”, a charity that funds music education projects for disadvantaged children in the developing world. During that journey across six continents Bach’s power to bridge linguistic and cultural divides never failed me. At the same time, it was my opportunity to explore the extraordinary world contained in one of the cornerstones of the violinist’s repertoire, his Six Sonatas and Partitas for Violin Solo. This recording is my next step in a journey that, I hope, will last a lifetime.

During his lifetime Bach never travelled further than 250 miles from his place of birth. I count myself exceptionally fortunate to have been able to spend an extended period travelling around the world with him as my constant companion. There was one other person who, having agreed to my deserting her and the family in order to indulge a whim, remained exceptionally close albeit at the other end of the phone.

That is my wife, Jane, to whom I dedicate this recording with love and gratitude.

David Juritz

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Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006

Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006


Johanna Martzy (violin)

Martzy’s solo Bach, which has acquired iconic status, is well played technically and very satisfying. Deploying the sturdy rhythm and glowing tone that are features of all her recordings, she gives balanced, middle-of-theroad interpretations, unhurried and free of self-indulgence. The three original LPs were well received on both sides of the Atlantic. In America the New York Herald Tribune chose the set as one of its recordings of 1956. In England Edward Greenfield of The Manchester Guardian remarked on Martzy’s ‘luscious vibrato’ but was not bothered by it; and on a later occasion he preferred her set of the Sonatas and Partitas to that of Jascha Heifetz. Desmond Shawe-Taylor of The Observer recommended her recordings ‘for sound musicianship and sustained sweetness of tone’. Interestingly, the question of her vibrato was also brought up by Schonberg after her New York début: ‘Her Bach was anything but purist and “classic” in conception. She approached the music with decisive rhythm and a good deal of vibrato (perhaps a little too much vibrato, in the slow movement; but this is a question of taste).’ Although he was writing about a concerto – and his remarks are borne out by live Martzy recordings of the Bach solo concertos – the points he makes are equally applicable to her unaccompanied Bach. Her interpretations are directly in the tradition of Hungarian fiddlers such as Szigeti, Telmányi and Varga: her native flair and unshowy virtuosity make up for any ‘romantic’ habits in her playing.

From the booklet note Tully Potter, 2011

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Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006

Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006


Ruth Waterman (violin)

“Waterman rates passionate conviction above perfect tone and neatness, as we can hear in her wonderfully stormy account of the moto perpetuo Double (variation) of the Second Partita's Corrente. Everything here is deeply felt, the product of profound engagement with the music...I'd recommend anyone to hear Waterman - there's so much here that's stimulating and thought-provoking.” Gramophone Magazine, July 2011

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Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006

Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006


Sergey Khachatryan (violin)

On this 2-CD set the outstanding young Armenian violinist Sergey Khachatryan brings his youthful insights to bear in a vibrant new recording of what is undoubtedly the most important collection of pieces for solo violin in musical history, J S Bach’s Sonatas and Partitas.

J.S Bach wrote the Six Sonatas and Partitas for Unaccompanied Violin in 1720, midway through his tenure as Capellmeister at the court of Prince Leopold in Cöthen. Whilst with these works Bach paid homage to a well-established Austrian-German tradition of polyphonic solo violin music, the Sonatas and Partitas go far beyond the compositions of his predecessors in their harmonic language The six works are cast in the two principal forms of the Italian trio sonata as codified by Arcangelo Corelli.

Sergey Khachatryan was born in 1985 in Yerevan, Armenia. In December 2000, when only 15, he won the Eighth International Jean Sibelius competition, and in 2005 he claimed First Prize at the prestigious Queen Elisabeth Competition in Brussels. He has performed as soloist with most of the great orchestras of the world, including the Berlin Philharmonic, the LSO, the New York Philharmonic, and the Royal Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, under the direction of conductors such as Valery Gergiev, Bernard Haitink, Gustavo Dudamel and Gianandrea Noseda. Sergey and his sister Lusine Khachatryan are regular performers at the Wigmore Hall in London, Carnegie Hall in New York, and the Théâtre des Champs Élysées in Paris amongst others. His previous recordings for Naïve include critically acclaimed performances of the Sibelius Violin Concerto (V4959), both of Shostakovich’s Concertos (V5025), and the Violin Sonatas of Franck and Shostakovich, with his sister Lusine on the piano (V5122).

“the young Armenian takes the palm for vigour and intensity. The Ciaconna that closes the second partita builds to a searing climax and the phrasing everywhere is immaculate.” The Telegraph, 19th November 2010 ****

“Silvery, bright and pure, he gives a youthful air to a deeply expressive interpretation that feels knowing beyond his years. Everything about his performance is to be savoured. Phrasing and dynamics play Bach's multi-layering effects to the full...All in all, a quite wonderful listen.” bbc.co.uk, 2nd November 2010

“This young violinist avoids the lean, fleet-fingered approach to Baroque music now in vogue, favoring an unabashedly Romantic and passionate take on Bach...his interpretations are vividly rendered, detailed and potently expressive.” New York Times, 26th November 2010

CD Review

Critics' Disc of the Year - December 2010

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Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006

Bach, J S: Sonatas & Partitas for solo violin, BWV1001-1006


A universe on four strings: Bach’s music for solo violin represents, despite – or perhaps precisely because of – its limited range, a source of unique musical riches. At every turn, the young Hungarian violinist Kristóf Baráti has a knack for finding the right balance between the vigorous energy of Baroque dance forms and the high demands of complex fugues.

“He's an extremely able player...and much of the pleasure in listening to his Bach comes from admiring the precision of his fingerwork and from his confident surmounting of every obstacle...Baráti is sensitive to the shape of Bach's phrases and to the implications of the underlying harmony.” Gramophone Magazine, June 2010

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