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Bach: Goldberg Variations BWV 988

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Customer Reviews

Nothing Better

The finest recording of the Goldberg Variations ever made. A Rosette Award from the "Penguin Guide to Classical Music" and a desert island disc for the authors. I could not agree more. Rosalyn Tureck is called the "High Priestess of Bach" and this recording indicates why. Her subtle touches, kaleidoscope of tonal colors, and the way it all "hangs together" from the beginning through variation to variation to the end is truly mesmerizing. If you are a big fan of the Goldberg Variations, do yourself a favor and buy this disc. You want regret it.

Great Performance, poor sound quality

If you don't care about the sound quality, this is an amazing performance, the most fluent and diverse of all of tureck's (many) "goldberg" performances. The piano sounds dry, too close to the mic, and has no resonance, as if placed in a very small room (The original CD was tagged "AAD"). To me, that doesn't take from the sheer beauty of the performance, to others, it might.

Great Performance in an Intimate Setting

Talik3 is a very astute listener and right on the money regarding the acoustics and recording setting. This performance WAS recorded in a very small room - a dining room within a home. It was recorded at the Connecticut home of William F. Buckley (editor of the National Review) as a "birthday present" to him from Tureck!!

Thus, reverberation is minimal and miking was very close up (even closer than that achieved in a studio setting) which leads to a very intimate setting and a detailed and distinguished articulation of each note.

I've also listened to performances that are recorded in a hall with reverberation, resulting in the acoustics of an open and spacious soundstage. Both have their own merits and can be equally enjoyable. Personally, for a relaxed listening I prefer Tureck's performance; for a tour de force performance, the spacious and reverberant soundstage of a hall performance is second to none.

You can't go wrong with either type of performance. Only you can decide which is more appropriate for you and may even depend on the your mood at the time of listening.


Genre: Classical

After childhood keyboard lessons with various teachers in Chicago, Rosalyn Tureck went to Juilliard to study with the famed Olga Samaroff. Though she had performed in recitals and concerts as a child in Chicago, Tureck attracted particular attention with her New York debut shortly after her graduation in 1935. Over the next ten years, she narrowed her repertoire, eventually becoming most closely associated with the music of J.S. Bach. After her European debut in 1947, she began a successful international...
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