Like the unaccompanied cello suites or piano partitas, Bach's Sonatas and Partitas for Solo Violin are among the highest pinnacles of the instrument's repertoire—as challenging for the fingers as for the intellect and spirit, and endlessly rewarding for performers and listeners alike. Taking on any one of these monumental works is a feat on its own, but what Christian Tetzlaff does here at the Festival Bach Montréal is nothing short of superhuman: he performs the entire set of six, from the plaintive opening strains of the Sonata No. 1 in G Minor through the epic Partita No. 2 in D Minor—with its concluding Ciaccona an entire magnum opus unto itself—and the incandescent joy of the Partita No. 3 in E, navigating every profound valley and imposing peak along the way.
The entire gamut of human emotion expressed with the utmost purity as only Bach knew how, performed by one of the most fearless and talented instrumentalists alive today: this is the kind of marquee event that doesn't come around every day, and one that music lovers will cherish from first note to last.
Photo: Christian Tetzlaff © Gabriel Fournier
Waldbühne 2013 – Berliner Philharmoniker
Verbier Festival 2016
Bach's Sonata No. 3 for Solo Violin