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Viola Da Gamba Sonatas BWV 1027-1029

3.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Audio CD, January 18, 1991
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Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Sonata III G-moll BWV 1029: Vivace
  2. Sonata III G-moll BWV 1029: Adagio
  3. Sonata III G-moll BWV 1029: Allegro
  4. Sonata II D-Dur BWV 1028: Adagio
  5. Sonata II D-Dur BWV 1028: Allegro
  6. Sonata II D-Dur BWV 1028: Andante
  7. Sonata II D-Dur BWV 1028: Allegro
  8. Sonata I G-Dur BWV 1027: Adagio
  9. Sonata I G-Dur BWV 1027: Allegro Ma Non Tanto
  10. Sonata I G-Dur BWV 1027: Andante
  11. Sonata I G-Dur BWV 1027: Allegro Moderato
  12. Sonata A-Dur: Larghetto
  13. Sonata A-Dur: Allegro
  14. Sonata A-Dur: Tempo Di Minuetto


Product Details

  • Audio CD (January 18, 1991)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sony
  • ASIN: B000002711
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #375,974 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Top Customer Reviews

By Evan Getz on December 14, 2006
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I have been a fan of Jordi Savall from my first introduction. I very much appreciate his gamba technique and find his interpretations of these same sonatas quite compelling.

That said, Anner Bylsma's disc gets a great deal more playing time. The timbre of the piccolo cello is ideally matched with the organ. While purists may balk at such unusual instrumentation, I cannot help but think such an experiment is quite in keeping with the spirit of Baroque era practices. In general, I try not to judge the success of a recording by a preconceived idea of what a musical elite would or would not approve of. If the instrumentation adds new colors and delights to the music, then it is a success.
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There are other recordings of the gamba sonatas that are better than this one. One may find this recording interesting, in the sense that Anner Bylsma on the cello is accompanied by Bob van Asperen on the organ, i.e. instead of harpsichord, or piano.
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Most recordings of the Bach viola da gamba sonatas these days are either modern, with the soloist perfoming on viola or cello with a piano accompaniment, or historical, using viola da gamba and harpsichord. This CD is just plain weird.
Bylsma, a fine baroque and classical cellist, has chosen to perform these works on a piccolo cello, a short-lived instrument for which Bach wrote the 6th cello suite, and which also appeared as an obbligato instrument in several of the cantatas. Even odder, he has chosen an organ as his keyboard, with the liner notes claiming it will result in better blend (though I wouldn't necessarily agree).
Fortunately, these two players are fine enough that the disc works regardless, but the instrumentation results in the performance being more of a curiosity than anything else.
In my opinion, the definitive recording of these works is Jordi Savall's excellent period performance with Ton Koopman. Though modern instruments are not my choice for Bach, you can't go wrong with Misha Maisky and Martha Argerich playing these sonatas. This Bylsma recording is worth skipping.
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