The Art of Glenn Gould
There are a lot of musicians, including me, who are nuts about pianist Glenn Gould. This 5 – CD album is intended – perhaps – to serve as a potential gift for us nutty folks. Trouble is that the material that was selected is, in my view, only partially satisfying.
The album includes the following:
Bach, J S:
- Goldberg Variations, BWV988, Recorded in 1955
- Italian Concerto, BWV971
- Chromatic Fantasia & Fugue in D minor, BWV903
- Keyboard Concerto in D minor (after Marcello), BWV974
- Keyboard Concerto No. 1 in D minor, BWV1052
- Keyboard Concerto No. 5 in F minor, BWV1056
- Piano Concerto No. 1 in C Major, Op. 15
- Piano Concerto No. 2 in B flat major, Op. 19
- Intermezzo in E flat major, Op. 117 No. 1
- Intermezzo in E flat minor, Op. 118 No. 6
- Intermezzo in C sharp minor, Op. 117 No. 3
- Piano Sonata No. 10 in C major, K330
Performed by Glenn Gould (piano)
This 5-CD box set surveys in depth Gould’s recordings from 1955 to 1961, beginning with the Goldberg Variations that remains one of the most celebrated (and best-selling) recordings of the 20th century.
While it is good that the album carries Gould’s 1955 recording of Bach’s Goldberg Variations, I am personally not all that enthusiastic about the other performances. Gould was a very controversial performer of both Beethoven and Mozart because of his decisions on tempos. On the other hand, I do enjoy his performances of the lovely Brahms Intermezzos.
Judge for yourself, as I will demonstrate with the following videos:
First, Glenn Gould playing J. S. Bach’s Goldberg Variations ( 1955 );
Amazing interpretation, and great music for exhilaration, or for sleep!
And here is Glenn Gould performing Beethoven’s “Emperor” Concerto; I actually love the somewhat slower opening; it provides more clarity to the grandeur of the music:
And next, here is Glenn Gould playing the “Sarabande” from Partita No.4 (BWV 828) by Johann Sebastian Bach:
Finally, here is Glenn Gould in Mozart’s Piano Sonata No.13 In D Flat Major K.333. Notice how he gives us a harpsichord-like sound on the modern grand piano:
Tags: Glenn Gould, Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, Brahms