wrt ensembles such as in Messiah, one of the things the Badurii-Skodii mention is the introduction of steel strings on violins and other stringed instruments replacing the old gut strings. This changed the standard volume and the tone colour fundamentally and fueled the brightness and intensity arms race. Do HIP ensembles use gut strings?
The reason I ask is that while I do love and respect the Bach solo violin partitas and sonatas I always find myself fighting to accept the sound of the violin. Often it's shrillness is an obstacle to overcome. Not so with the cello suites. But then I heard Scott Slapin's recording of these sonatas on viola transposed down a fifth. With the mellower sound the music suddenly opened up in a new way to me. The polyphony felt more natural rather an acrobatic display. And was consequently easier to listen to. My own subjective reaction. My wife felt the same too. I'm wondering if I should hunt down a recording on the violin with gut strings to see if that makes a similar impact.
Discuss technical aspects of piano playing and recording.
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