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Planet Hugill Blogg "In performances of such engaging quality that I shall certainly be listening to the CD again and again".

February 16, 2020

Hugill, Planet Hugill Blogg

Not all of Bach's works come down to us in their original versions, and scholars sometimes postulate an 'original' instrumentation from a later incarnation. For example for Bach's Sonata in B minor, BWV 1030 for transverse flute there are indications (another harpsichord part in another key) that the work originated on different instruments. The suggestion with this work is that Bach transcribed it from something earlier for his Collegium Musicum in Leipzig.

So, on this disc we have the distinguished recorder player Michala Petri, joined by viola da gambaa player Hille Perl and harpsichordist Mahan Esfahani for Bach's six flute sonatas in versions transcribed for recorder. Petri plays two different recorders, alto and tenor, and the sonatas are generally played transposed. But what really counts here is the sheer quality of the music making. Petri plays with wonderfully rounded, speaking tones and completely convinces in the sonatas' new incarnations. The sheer expressivity of her playing is outstanding, and she helped by the superb partnership she receives from Esfahani and Perl. This is very much ensemble music making, not the sort where the solo instrument is placed top dead centre with the others relegated to the rear. I was particularly struck by the sheer vibrancy and vividness of Esfahani's harpsichord, so that all three instruments make apt complements.

Unlike the solo violin music, these pieces were not written as a set and that makes the sheer variety and quality of the material so remarkable. This is music that I did not know very well, in performances of such engaging quality that I shall certainly be listening to the CD again and again

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