Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop All Amazon Fashion Cloud Drive Photos Shop now Learn More Shop now DIYED Shop now Shop Fire Shop Kindle Oasis Listen with Prime Learn more Shop now
Customer Review

5 of 19 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Technically flawless, but artisitically flawed., 5 Nov. 2008
By 
This review is from: Schubert : Die Winterreise (Audio CD)
Discussing Sviatoslav Richter's revelatory performances of the late Schubert sonatas, Glenn Gould observed that he saw artists as being divisible into two broad categories. In brief, the first of Gould's groups saw their job as drawing attention to their instruments and to their own technical facilities; the second concentrated on dedicating their skills to revealing the music (Richter was Gould's preeminent example of the latter).

Unfortunately, this performance seems to sit squarely in the first of Gould's two groups. Technically flawless, both in terms of the exceptional skills of the performers and the quality of the recording, there is, however, a woeful surfeit of what I can only call 'effects'. There are too many examples of odd bursts of inappropriate fortissimo or pianissimo singing, self-conscious changes in tempo, or bizarre pianistic effects - like the spreading of chords that should be taken whole; a residue, perhaps, of Staier's harpsichord playing.

The overall sense is that these artists were striving to do something new and memorable with the work, which is all very commendable in its way. And they certainly do succeed in creating some memorable moments, although not perhaps for the reasons they had intended. There is simply too much of them in this performance, and not enough of Schubert. In one word, it's mannered, and I find that both pointless and unforgivable.

Like Sir Peter Hall's 1990s stage production of Hamlet, in which everyone wore ridiculous red costumes and Hamlet stripped naked to show that he was mad, this is all about the performers. Far too often, in spite of Pregardien's wonderful diction and awesome technique, I was left with the impression that the words and music were only there as a vehicle for his self-aggrandissement. Likewise, Staier's technically stunning playing seemed too often bent on highlighting itself. So just two stars, for the technical perfection.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No

[Add comment]
Post a comment
To insert a product link use the format: [[ASIN:ASIN product-title]] (What's this?)
Amazon will display this name with all your submissions, including reviews and discussion posts. (Learn more)
Name:
Badge:
This badge will be assigned to you and will appear along with your name.
There was an error. Please try again.
Please see the full guidelines ">here.

Official Comment

As a representative of this product you can post one Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
The following name and badge will be shown with this comment:
 (edit name)
After clicking on the Post button you will be asked to create your public name, which will be shown with all your contributions.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.  Learn more
Otherwise, you can still post a regular comment on this review.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
 
System timed out

We were unable to verify whether you represent the product. Please try again later, or retry now. Otherwise you can post a regular comment.

Since you previously posted an Official Comment, this comment will appear in the comment section below. You also have the option to edit your Official Comment.   Learn more
The maximum number of Official Comments have been posted. This comment will appear in the comment section below.   Learn more
Prompts for sign-in
  [Cancel]

Comments

Track comments by e-mail

Sort: Oldest first | Newest first
Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 23 Oct 2013 09:57:33 BDT
Abert says:
You seem to be scoring a point, but really it comes to aboslutely nothing when your review is being read in full, because you did not even bother to get 'facts' straight before venting your own air - Staier did not play on a harpsichord.

In reply to an earlier post on 2 Dec 2013 12:30:47 GMT
Bezza says:
Thank you for the comment. Of course Staier is not playing a harpsichord here; my point was that it was perhaps his experience as a harpsichordist that led him to spread some chords that Schubert intended to be taken whole. Schubert has clearly marked the chords that should be spread - as anyone with a knowledge of the score will know - and Staier takes liberties in adding some of his own, which Schubert did not intend. It is the musician's role to interpret the intentions of the composer, not to reinterpret them.
‹ Previous 1 Next ›

Review Details

Item

Reviewer


Location: UK

Top Reviewer Ranking: 215,131