Christophe Rousset is one of the finest and most exciting harpsichordists, and as a conductor is a leader in the late 20th century revival of French Baroque music. After studying piano as a boy, he became deeply interested in the harpsichord at the age of 13. He studied with Huguette Dreyfus at the Schola Cantorum in Paris and, from 1980 to 1983, with Bob van Asperen at the Royal Conservatory of the Hague. He won a special certificate of distinction at the Schola Cantorum and, in 1983, the first prize at the International Harpsichord Competition in Bruges.
Marc and Pierre Hantaï meet for a new fraternal adventure around the tutelary figure of J.S. Bach. These pieces for flute and harpsichord, whose writing is certainly one of the most accomplished of the baroque repertoire, allow at the same time the most touching expressive possibilities.
Few violinists can move between a modern instrument and a period one with such ease—not to mention with such an idiomatic approach to so many styles of music—as Isabelle Faust. Following her award-winning set of the Mozart violin concertos, the German is joined by the ever-stylish keyboard player Kristian Bezuidenhout for Bach’s sonatas for violin and harpsichord. Both instruments sound magnificent, and these two great players bring breathtaking invention and imagination to the six sonatas. The humanity and warmth of Bach’s music is extraordinary, especially when played with the passion and flair encountered here.
Debut album by the next young and talented violinist on Deutsche Grammophon, following the successful footsteps of Anne-Sophie Mutter and David Garrett who both joined the label as youngsters.
Since the beginning of it’s existence in 1960, the Slovak Chamber Orchestra has developed into one of the most popular ensembles in the field of classical music in Slovakia, and into one of the principal representatives of the Slovak interpretation art abroad. The idea of founding a string orchestra has risen in the mind of Prof. Bohdan Warchal in the late 50-s, while still a member of the Slovak Philharmonic Orchestra.
Say what you will about scanty biographical material and uncertain personal links, it nevertheless seems entirely probable that Bach wrote at least some of his sonatas and partitas for violin solo after his first wife's death in 1720. In this second volume of Hélène Schmitt recordings of the works, her performance of the monumental A minor Sonata No. 2 is so passionate, so rhapsodic, and so expressive that the spirit of loss and grief fills the music like inconsolable tears.
This wild recording, the first volume of two covering all the Bach sonatas and partitas for solo violin, may well polarize listeners into attitudes of love and hate. French violinist Hélène Schmitt delivers readings of the first sonata and the first two partitas that are nowhere near the mainstream for these celebrated works, which are generally regarded as icons of Bach's intellectual accomplishment and have been subjected to all kinds of numerological analysis.