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JULIA FISCHER's BRILLIANT BACH CONCERTOs: WITH THE A.S.M
on 12 February 2012
Five WONDERFUL Stars!! Superb performances! Award-winning German violin virtuoso Julia Fischer once again demonstrates her great empathy with the music of Johann Sebastian Bach performing his violin concertos on her Decca debut. Here she records with the vaunted Academy of St Martin in the Fields chamber group with whom she has previously recorded and toured, but this time sans conductor, as Fischer herself ascends to the role of leader. Ms Fischer in an interview says she is "Playing for the people of the 21st Century" and she respectfully puts her stamp on these incandescent performances. The 25 year old Ms Fischer has loved and played Bach from age 4, won the Yehudi Menuhin violin competition at age 11 (with special prize for the Best Bach solo), and most recently she recorded J.S. Bach: Sonatas and Partitas for Solo Violin, BWV 1001-1006.
This CD presents different facets for the listener to enjoy: Julia's individual interpretations, her duo interaction with oboe and second violin, and A.S.M. group dynamics, all courtesy of the awesome genius of Bach. Ms Fischer's beautiful sound and bowed fireworks are well-integrated into the orchestra emerging from alongside the tutti as principal voice and then blending back again. The 'piece de resistance' is the Double Violin Concerto. The second violinist is Fischer's friend and former Menuhin competitor Sasha Sitkovetsky and they make wonderful ethereal music on their similar time-frame Guadagnini violins, especially the Allegro and Largo Ma non Tanto movements which are contrapuntally mesmerizing. But there is so much more, such as the stately elegance in the Andante movement and the Allegro Assai of the concerto in A minor. The lyrical beauty of the Adagio movement of Violin Concerto No 2 has Ms Fischer's purity of tone set against the continuo. In the D minor concerto for oboe, strings, and violin, the oboist is the superb Andrey Rubtsov and with Ms Fischer the concerto becomes one of pure exultation in the two Allegro movements and placid beauty in the Adagio movement. Julia Fischer is one of the supreme interpreters of Bach and among the most brilliant violin virtuosos of this century. Kudos to Julia, guests, and the A.S.M: great colloborations!! My Highest Recommendation. Five BIG Stars.
(This review is based on an mp3 download)
Trivia: Julia Fischer has won all 8 competitions that she entered: 5 in classical violin and 3 in classical piano. Quite a feat!)