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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A truly great recording
This is one of thirty "seminal recordings" out of the thousands in their catalogue which have been reissued by Hyperion to celebrate their 30th birthday, and this is certainly belongs among them. If I had to choose just one recording from the whole of Hyperion's superlative catalogue, this would be a very strong contender.

The Goldberg Variations are arguably...
Published on 5 Oct 2010 by Sid Nuncius

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0 of 17 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Classical Lightweight!
I feel a bit mean giving this cd only three stars as Angela Hewitt is an amazing pianist and from that point of view surely it deserves five. However, I have rated it on my enjoyment of listening to 'Goldberg Variations' and have had to rate it accordingly. I recently had the privilege of listening to Simon Jacobs play the opening piece to this cd and decided I wanted...
Published on 17 July 2011 by cleo


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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A truly great recording, 5 Oct 2010
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Sid Nuncius (London) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Bach: Goldberg Variations (Audio CD)
This is one of thirty "seminal recordings" out of the thousands in their catalogue which have been reissued by Hyperion to celebrate their 30th birthday, and this is certainly belongs among them. If I had to choose just one recording from the whole of Hyperion's superlative catalogue, this would be a very strong contender.

The Goldberg Variations are arguably Bach's greatest keyboard work. They are built on a fabulous technical framework of which the listener is scarcely aware and present us with a sublimely beautiful Aria and thirty amazingly diverse and expressive variations upon its ground bass, and they add up to an exceptionally enjoyable and rewarding musical experience.

There are an awful lot of recordings of the Goldberg Variations - many extremely good - but this is the best I know. Angela Hewitt's excellent discs of Bach have attracted universal acclaim and this, in my view, is the best of them. Her superlative technique and the depth of her scholarship and understanding of Bach form the bedrock, but she also brings fabulous a joy and a lambent beauty to these pieces. As a little example, there is a tiny five-note descending arpeggio in the opening Aria (at about 1'38" if you're interested) which is easy to treat simply as a link between two more important sections, but which absolutely glows in Hewitt's hands and moves me every time I hear it. The performance is full of such lovely details as this, and combined with her impeccable approach to the work as a whole they make this something really special.

The recorded sound is excellent (as always from Hyperion) and Angela Hewitt's notes are exceptionally interesting. This has been one of my most treasured CDs for many years. Now it's at mid-price it is an unmissable bargain, too. Recommended in the warmest terms.

(You may like to know that this disc is included in a terrific box set of all Angela Hewitt's solo Bach recordings Angela Hewitt plays Bach (Complete Solo Keyboard Recordings). It's something of an investment, but well, well worth it.)
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Goldberg Variations, 29 May 2012
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This review is from: Bach: Goldberg Variations (Audio CD)
Angela Hewitt's Goldbergs are a revelation. Her playing has a beautiful, fluid legato style. She shows utmost respect towards Bachs contrapuntal texture, and the polyphonic tecture of the music is incredibly well articulated. This is the case for playing Bach on the piano. As Hewitt explains, it is easier to distinguish between the different voices on a piano and make more of the music in general. She allows the music to breathe, and is not afraid of using the peddle occasionally. When the piece demands majesty or brilliance, Hewitt also delivers, such as the variations 12 and 16.

I think what especially distinguishes this recording is Angela's treatment of the dance like forms that begin each group of 3 for example variations 4, 7, 10 etc. her playing is so bouncy and full of life, it makes you want to get up and dance and generally feel joyous to be alive! Aside this, Hewitt' treatment of the slow more sorrowful pieces, like 15 and 25- referred to as the black pearl is not overly tragic, but still successfully evokes pathos.

In my opinion, this is the best Goldberg commited to record, it's a shame it's not one of the first results on Amazon. This is an interpretation to stay with, listening will heighten your enjoyment of these pieces.
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0 of 17 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Classical Lightweight!, 17 July 2011
This review is from: Bach: Goldberg Variations (Audio CD)
I feel a bit mean giving this cd only three stars as Angela Hewitt is an amazing pianist and from that point of view surely it deserves five. However, I have rated it on my enjoyment of listening to 'Goldberg Variations' and have had to rate it accordingly. I recently had the privilege of listening to Simon Jacobs play the opening piece to this cd and decided I wanted to hear more. However, it has proved to be a little too heavy going for me, hence the title 'Classical Lightweight' I have only listened to it once though and intend to listen to it again in the hope I may change my mind. If so, watch this space...
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Bach: Goldberg Variations by Angela Hewitt (Audio CD - 2010)
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