Yesterday morning I was checking out the website of NPRs Deceptive Cadence, which is basically their classical music blog and sometime in October they had a recording artist and classical pianist record some Bach, someone I have never heard of before, Simone Dinnerstein. They said she came to fame when she recorded the demanding Goldberg Variations in 2007, and that the album was self-financed. Needless to say, I was curious to know more about this pianist.
I tried but wasn't able to download the file on the npr website, it was her playing Bach's, "Partita 1 in B-Flat Major, BWV 825" so I went to Amazon and typed in her name. I found her album (released at the front of this year) titled, "Something Almost Being Said: Music of Bach and Schubert." I immediately was shocked to see the Partita on this recording. Shocked to see that the runtime was 3:02. This was a shock to me because in my PS collection I have a recording by Wui-Ming Gan that is 1:53 and technically and artistically sounds great, and so I wondered what I would be listening to, would it be at half time? What would that sound like? I purchased the Mp3 of the Partita from Amazon and yes, the piece is at half time, has a contemplative mood to it. If you are looking for an in time recording, look elsewhere!! It's quite rubatoey, as if we are swimming through the music instead of walking through it.
If I had heard this in the audition room, I would say, "i heard your piece, the recording quality is very good (what piano are you using? I'd like to imitate your setup
), you seem to have all of the notes right, but I think this piece by Bach just doesn't... it sounds too romantic for Bach. It would be fine for any number of pieces by Chopin or Brahms, but I don't think this type of playing suits a BWV. Sorry.
That's what I would say. I will say, it's interesting to hear a "new" interpretation of the music, but I think there are some better and worse ways to play certain types of music. Like I get mad when I hear Cubus dk on Youtube playing Bach. He plays a Bach march on his digital with his signature spacey-cathedrally echo...
makes me sick! And though I can't speak for him, I do not think Bach would approve!
Any other thoughts? Has anybody else heard of Dinnerstein?