Bach Goldberg Variations

Johann Sebastian Bach was one of the giants of Music composition, without whom Music of all kinds would have been a lot different today. And look at the dates: Bach was born in 1685, and his music is still being studied and performed more than 300 years later!

The so-called Goldberg Variations represent a simple theme, and 30 variations on that theme, followed by the Theme’s repetition at the end of the piece. The work is performed on either a modern piano, or sometimes on an older instrument which tries to mimic the sounds produced by keyboard instruments of Bach’s time.

Glenn Gould was a remarkable Canadian pianist, who recorded several different interpretations of this music. One was recorded in the 1950’s; others followed many years later. Musicians will argue to eternity about the version that they like best.

This recording is a 1981 remake, and this later version is more deliberate in tempo, and unique in expression. My suggestion: Leave the analysis to others. Find a time when you can sit in a comfortable place; do nothing else, and devote some time to do nothing but listen, and see how you react to this masterpiece.

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