Seven Violinists!

Bach Chaconne Comparison!!

Johann Sebastian Bach composed Sonatas and Partitas for solo violin that are the hallmark of a performer’s expertise. When played, these compositions expose the performer’s capabilities for all to hear. They are seemingly transparent: One cannot hide anything. You either know these, or you fall short. The performer’s style, musical feeling, phrasing, maturity, and technical expertise are all quite apparent.

For more than 300 years, violinists have struggled with all of these solo sonatas, and none is more challenging that the Bach Chaconne, BWV 1004.

Musical taste varies widely and it is a very personal thing. I will post below several current and past performers, all playing the same piece. You decide on the performance that you find most meaningful. Do let me know by entering your favorite in the comment field at the bottom of this post. (Thanks!)


1. Here is Viktoria Mullova:



2. Here is Henryk Szeryng:


3. And now, let’s hear Hilary Hahn:


4. And then the legendary Jascha Heifetz:


5. Next, Yitzhak Perlman performs the same composition:

6. And now, Nathan Milstein:

7. And last, but not least, Julia Fischer:

Yes… comparisons are tough, because recording has improved a lot since the “old days”. Sorry… Try to focus on other factors that you find more important.

Who, in your view, provides the performance that is most meaningful to you? Let me know, below…

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