J.S. Bach

Recommended (or not) Recordings

Well-Tempered Clavier, Books 1 and 2

Main Performer
or Conductor:
Zuzana Ruzickova
Individual Works:48 preludes and fugues
BWV 846 to BWV 893
Format:Compact Disc
Record Label:Panton
Catalog Number:811411-2
Year Released/Recorded:1995
Total Playing Time:cd1: 57:56
cd2: 61:13
cd3: 76:10
cd4: 76:55
Comments:Jan Hanford said:

The recorded sound is wonderfully close with no distracting reverb. She varies the harpsichord stops, for example: alternating between the two 8' stops for the repeat of each phrase of the famous Prelude No. 1. I've never heard that done before and the result is delightful.

However, the rest of the performance is sometimes sloppy and choppy and I heard at least one editing error. Her tempos are often slow, which can be sometimes interesting and other times tedious. Her choice of tempo is often different that what it typical. Some works are better than others but, overall, I am not able to recommend this recording.

Miloslav Sir said:

This is not "Sturm und Drang" recording. Z. Ruzickova was 67 in the year 1995. This recording is already the third made by her course of artistic career. She played espressivo melodious, polyphony was slightly suppressed. My opinion is, this is a "harpsichord pendant" of Svjatoslav Richter's piano recording. I advise to listen this recording at night in headphones. It is highly objective reading of Bach's musical manuscript.

  • Miloslav SirFrom the collection of Jan Hanford.
  • Date First Submitted:06/11/2002