Bach’s “Ich ruf zu Dir” I heard it first in a transcription for solo piano by Busoni, but discovered that there are also versions for cello and piano. Album · · 1 nummer. Beschikbaar met een Apple Music-abonnement. Probeer het gratis. Check out J.S. Bach: Ich ruf zu Dir, Herr Jesu Christ, BWV (Transcribed For Piano By Ferruccio Busoni) by Anna Gourari on Amazon Music. Stream ad-free.
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Pianist Max Levinson muses on music, mostly. The blog’s title refers to a quote from Aldous Huxley. I’ll try to stay on topic, but anyone who knows me will expect me to take detours and add footnotes and make analogies relentlessly. Unexpectedly for me, I love Brendel’s version.
For me his measured calm reveals the emotion inherent in the piece. I like the cello. There is a recording with brass ensemble. German Brass Bach that is lovely.
Buy the way, I use to play this piece on the clarinet with piano. Works very well to. About Me View my complete profile. About Max Levinson Management: Cadenza Artists Biography Critical Acclaim. Labels musical thoughts 10 random thoughts 3 stuff for Piano Lit class 3 videos Sunday, April 8, Bach’s “Ich ruf zu Dir”.
Throughout my life, I have always loved Bach, but over the past few years haven’t focused as much of my time or energy on playing or teaching his music. I think this is because it is less “practical” in the sense that it is less helpful in winning a competition, passing an audition, etc.
Lately I have been happily reminded of the fact that Bach is, as one of my students recently remarked, food for the soul. When I was growing up, if I was sick and home from school, I would listen to Bach because it made me feel better, even physically.
This evening, I was feeling a bit down and happened upon a piece by Bach I didn’t know: I heard it first in a transcription for solo piano by Busoni, but discovered that there are also versions for cello and piano and a slightly different piano arrangement by Wilhelm Kempff. As a pianist, I tend to ask my students to try NOT to sound like the piano, but in the end I have to admit I like the piano version better than the organ.
But the cello and piano version may be the best of all.
Here are a few for you to compare: Grigory Sokolov – what an amazing sound! Vladimir Horowitz – would have loved to hear this extraordinary singing sound live.
Tatiana Nikolayeva – very slow! But her laser beam of sound makes it possible to sustain the line even at this tempo. You may note that this is the third Russian in a row here.
Murray Perahia – as if to disprove my assertion that Americans don’t play these Bach arrangements, here is always poetic Perahia. He doesn’t have that same bold sound that the three Russians do perhaps by choicebut also shows greater care for phrasing, and more interest in the accompaniment. Wilhelm Kempff – playing his arrangement, which to my ear is hardly different at all from Busoni’s. He has some of the same singing sound that you hear from Sokolov, along with a nice way of shaping the accompaniment.
Anne Queffelec – a beautiful performance in every respect, and it’s nice to see this live.
Ich ruf’ zu dir, transcription for… | Details | AllMusic
It reminds me that as much as I enjoy recordings, there is something more engaging about seeing a live human being actually making the sound we hear.
On the organ now, by Ton Koopman. He can and does take this quite slowly, as the organ is capable of sustaining notes indefinitely, unlike the piano where the sound will, dor, decay and die away, making too slow a tempo somewhat inadvisable.
Note also that the pitch sounds a half-step lower all the pianists sound like they are playing in F-minor, while this sounds like E-minor. I assume that this organ is tuned to a lower pitch than what we use today. I admit that I am not an organ aficionado, but I have to say the relentlessly sustained quality of the organ is almost hard to take for me in this piece. And finally for two on the cello: Maurice Gendron’s playing of a slightly different arrangement: Somehow, being more in the “comfort zone” of the cello seems to suit the character of this piece better.
What do you think? Do you know of another recording that you prefer?
I didn’t know this piece at all before this evening, and now have listened to it about a dozen times – and I feel better than I did before I listened to it.
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