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Bach Consort's Birthday Party

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available at Amazon
Orchestral Suites, Akademie
für Alte Musik Berlin

available at Amazon
Brandenburg Concertos,
Concerto Italiano

available at Amazon
Other Concertos,
Café Zimmermann
Read my review published today on the Washington Post Web site:

Charles T. Downey, Consort gives Bach birthday a familiar ring
Washington Post, March 23, 2010
The Washington Bach Consort feted the 325th birthday of its namesake on Sunday afternoon, with a concert of J.S. Bach's instrumental music at the National Presbyterian Church. The ensemble has rightfully earned a devoted local following for its groundbreaking exploration of the early history of baroque music performance. As the years have passed, however, the state of historically informed performance of Bach's music has continued to improve, while the Bach Consort appears happy in some of its concerts to revisit the same well-trodden territory.

The opening overture movement of the Orchestral Suite No. 1 in C had a relaxed tempo that allowed the music to circle and glide rather than be angled and sharp-cornered, but the players often struggled against it, a tendency to rush that pushed the ensemble out of alignment. The suite's dance movements were more rhythmically incised, making them and the sinfonia of Cantata 42 the most pleasing parts of the playing. In the wreath of 10 entwined string lines that is the third Brandenburg Concerto, the sequential exposure of solo parts was pleasant enough until one reached the third violin and second and third violas. [Continue reading]
Happy Birthday, Bach!
Washington Bach Consort (J. Reilly Lewis, director)
BWV 42 | BWV 541 | BWV 1042 | BWV 1048 | BWV 1066
National Presbyterian Church



Anonymous said...

Agree completely with your review--I was so disappointed with the Brandenburg and especially the violin concerto, the latter unfortunately marred by misplaced fingerings and pinched tone.

Anonymous said...

it was more disappointing to have a bach brandenburg concerto conducted and see the performers try and keep up with tempi that were extremely fast.

as for the previous persons comments about misplaced fingerings and pinched tone, the violinist sounded great. maybe it was the overly full chord's on the _miked_ harpsichord that should be questioned in this performance