Leonard Slatkin – Bach: The Conductors’ Transcriptions (2004/2021)
FLAC (tracks) 24bit/96kHz | Time – 01:13:11 minutes | 1,34 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Digital Booklet, Front Cover | © Chandos
A few years ago I was pleased to record a selection of works by Bach in transcriptions by other composers (CHAN 9835). Now it is time for the conductors to weigh in on the matter. In a way it can be argued that, since most of these maestri wrote their versions for specific orchestras, there is an even greater coherency in these works.
Although only a few conductors represented on this disc are also known as composers in their own right, all had a more than competent skill when it came to knowing what their orchestras could do. The sheer magnitude of the Mitropoulos and Skrowaczewski transcriptions is staggering. The efforts of Wood, Barbirolli and others are excellent indications of creative minds at work. Even a less well-known conductor such as Vittorio Gui shows a fine knowledge of orchestral resource. One conductor is notably absent from this collection: Leopold Stokowski. We felt that he was amply represented on disc, not just by his own performances, but also by those that have been recorded by others.
I believe that each transcription shows nothing but the highest degree of respect for Bach. Each conductor is paying tribute, as if to say that the old German master would have welcomed the instrumental forces that were to become available at different times in the future.
“Then there are the slower pieces, mostly chorales and chorale preludes, plush and heavily draped in the case of Eugene Ormandy, Sir John Barbirolli, and Walter Damrosch (a little overbearing in A Mighty Fortress is our God). I’m not too sure about Otto Klemperer’s ‘Bist du bei mir’ which seems keen on a Schoenbergian route but doesn’t quite get that far, or Malcolm Sargent’s sugar-coated Air. Erich Leinsdorf gets the balance about right for Herzlich tut mich verlangen but in any case everything here is worth sampling at least once, and most of it more often than that. It’s a real treat and the sound is excellent. Need I say more?” (Rob Cowan, Gramophone)
“…Leonard Slatkin and the BBC Symphony Orchestra relish the considerable technical challenges posed by these transcriptions… those who enjoy their Bach as a full meat-and-two-veg course will love this release, and the Chandos recording is suitably lustrous.” (BBC Music Magazine)
“this rewarding anthology receives an opulent and lucid recording. An enlightening project then, and a testimony to Bach’s indestructible music and his ability to inspire.” (International Record Review)
1. Leonard Slatkin – I. Toccata
2. Leonard Slatkin – II. Fuga
3. Leonard Slatkin – Herz unt Mund und Tat und Leben, BWV 147: Chorale. Jesu bleibet meine Freude
4. Leonard Slatkin – Herzlich tut mich verlangen, BWV 727: Chorale Prelude. Herzlich tut mich verlangen
5. Leonard Slatkin – I. Prelude (Arr. from J.S. Bach, The Well-Tempered Clavier, Book 1. Prelude in C-Sharp Major, BWV 848)
6. Leonard Slatkin – II. Lament (Arr. from J.S. Bach. Capriccio on the Departure of Hist Most Beloved Brother in B-Flat Major, BWV 992)
7. Leonard Slatkin – III. Scherzo (Arr. from J.S. Bach. Partita No. 3 in A Minor, BWV 827)
8. Leonard Slatkin – IV. Gavotte and Musette (Arr. from J.S. Bach. English Suite No. 6 in D Minor, BWV 811)
9. Leonard Slatkin – V. Andante mistico (Arr. from J.S. Bach, The Well-Tempered Clavier, Book 1. Prelude in B-Flat Minor, BWV 867)
10. Leonard Slatkin – VI. Finale (Arr. from Partita No. 3 in E major, BWV 1006)
11. Leonard Slatkin – Orchestral Suite No. 3 in D Major, BWV 1068: Air on the G String
12. Leonard Slatkin – Was mir behagt, ist nur die muntre Jagd!, BWV 208: Aria. Schafe konnen sicher weiden
13. Leonard Slatkin – Fugue in G Minor, BWV 542: I. Fantasia
14. Leonard Slatkin – Fantasia and Fugue in G Minor, BWV 542: II. Fuga
15. Leonard Slatkin – Das Orgel-Buchlein. Ich ruf’ zu, dir, Herr Jesu Christ, BWV 639
16. Leonard Slatkin – Clavierbuchlein, Book III, BWV 508: Bist du bei mir?
17. Leonard Slatkin – Chorale Prelude, BWV 720: Ein feste Burg ist unser Gott