J.S. Bach

Recommended (or not) Recordings

Goldberg Variations

Main Performer
or Conductor:
Ketil Haugsand
Individual Works:Goldberg Variations, BWV 988
Record Label:SIMAX
Catalog Number:PSC 1192
Year Released/Recorded:2002
Total Playing Time:70:52
Comments:Jan Hanford said:

I have enjoyed Ketil Haugsand's performances previously on recordings of Bach and Rameau and when I heard he had recorded the Goldberg Variations I had to have it. I was not disappointed; it's a vibrant and delightfully personal interpretation that is often thrilling.

A surprise: he uses frequent ornamentation and I enjoyed it. Probably because of his intelligent balance of tempos and phrasing, the ornamentation is not an interruption but a complement to the music, as it should be. His tempos are lively, his phrasing is highly musical and his articulation is captivating. The result is a personal interpretation that separates it from the kind of dry performance of which there are many. It makes you love the Goldbergs all over again, as Ketil Haugsand obviously does.

The harpsichord sound is lovely, with clear treble and rich bass. It sounds as if you are sitting next to him while he plays; very enjoyable!

This is a highly recommended cd of a standout performance.

Acknowledgements:From the collection of Jan Hanford.
Date First Submitted:02/09/2003