PHOENIX performs Bach's Goldberg Variations in an outstanding arrangement for strings and continuo made by conductor Bernard Labadie.
The Goldberg variations written originally for harpsichord (1741) is one of Bach’s most important works, stunning in the variety of genres it addresses. PHOENIX performs Bach's masterpiece in a new light, through Bernard Labadie’s brilliant and ground-breaking arrangement for strings and continuo, made in the Baroque tradition of transforming the music to suit the medium.
After hearing this version, one understands that Bach's Goldberg's harpsichord setting is in fact a reduction of a much larger music, involving many genres: in short, it is a true revelation.
We are indebted to Labadie and to Les Violons du Roy (Canada) for sharing it with us.
Noam Schuss baroque violin
Noam Gal baroque violin
Rachel Ringelstein baroque viola
Marina Minkin harpsichord
Myrna Herzog viola da gamba, musical director
"An outstanding performance... a rich, meaningful musical experience... The PHOENIX players’ intelligent, virtuosic, profoundly inquiring, sensitive and nuanced performance confirms that the greatness of the Goldbergs goes far beyond the keyboard, opening the floodgates for new interpretative possibilities of this ingenious work, all wrought of the same harpsichord score.... Once again, Myrna Herzog has challenged audiences to free themselves of pre-conceptions, to listen with “new ears”." Pamela Hickman (Read the full review here.)
"Excellent performance... significant artistic achievement... one could appreciate Bach’s contrapuntal ingenuity in all its glory". Ury Eppstein, The Jerusalem Post
" …the polyphonic texture heard with greater transparency... stood out the "French Ouverture" variation, and the famous variation which anticipates in more than 250 years Schoenberg' s atonal era, in the deliberated and impressive playing of violinist Noam Schuss... the three last pieces were really exciting: Variation No. 29, followed by the “Quodlibet", and the aria." Hagai Hitron, HaAretz