'... as honest and durable a tribute to the unending delights
of Bach's mastery as one could wish for.'
Angela Hewitt plays Bach -
by DAVID WILKINS
Current political debates notwithstanding, J S Bach, it seems, can be
claimed as a Europhile ahead of his time. This lovely disc from recent history's
second great Canadian Bach pianist might pose other questions about Commonwealth
loyalties. Suffice it to say, however, that Angela Hewitt has none of Glenn
Gould's (irritating or irresistible according to taste) mannerisms.
She plays the music of Italian and French influenced -- but always, of course,
irrepressibly Germanic, Bach -- with affection entirely free of affectation,
cleanly and honestly recorded by Hyperion's superb engineering and
absolutely without intrusive point-making.
The two vital works here are those from the second part of the Klavierubung.
In the first movement of the Italian Concerto, she immediately establishes
a degree of piano / forte dynamic differentiation that refutes any argument
that you must have a two-manual harpsichord for this music. The Andante
has a fine sense of inwardness, not overburdened with pathos and a perfectly-weighted
continuity of the bass line's legato and staccato elements. There is
no sense of the clockwork in the Presto's joyous exchanges between
hands -- enough to inspire the amateur pianist or, more likely, make him
Copyright © 5 August 2001
David Wilkins, Eastbourne, East Sussex, UK
CD INFORMATION - HYPERION CDA67306
PURCHASE THIS DISC FROM CROTCHET
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