Bach Inspirations (2013)

Bach, Franck, Liszt, Grainger

Hannes Minnaar

Few composers can have inspired a wider range of people with their music than Johann Sebastian Bach, (1685-1750). His works are still beloved listening for vast numbers of enthusiasts today. Rare is the music student who has not at some time performed his music or played his suites and partitas on the violin, cello, flute, saxophone, accordion, organ or piano. There seems to be no end to the stream of performances and recordings - and for good reason: his music remains a potent source of inspiration.

Bach has also proved an inexhaustible source of inspiration for composers. Although he was the target of considerable criticism in his day, and his works were rarely if ever performed in the years immediately after his death, his standing among colleagues was undisputed. In particular Das Wohltemperierte Klavier (The Well-tempered Keyboard) was considered a virtual handbook for composers. Haydn was familiar with the collection, Mozart transcribed portions of it for string quartet, Beethoven was taught from it, and Chopin used the music to warm up before concert performances.

 

Bach’s vocal compositions did not have a commensurate reputation. But after Mendelssohn organized a performance of the St. Matthew Passion in 1829, it proved to be the start of a genuine Bach revival for wider audiences. In the following years, both Schumann and Liszt became passionate advocates for Bach’s music. Liszt, as a touring piano virtuoso, aroused wild enthusiasm with his own arrangements of several of Bach’s major organ compositions. In this way he established the foundation for a vast repertoire of arrangements and transcriptions that appeared in the succeeding generations. A varied selection of these can be heard on this CD.

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Hannes Minnaar

www.hannesminnaar.com

In March of 2013, Hannes Minnaar made his debut with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in Beethoven’s Fourth Piano Concerto under Herbert Blomstedt. This performance marked a new milestone in the career of the 28-year-old pianist. The invitation to perform in this concert was the result of the Third Prize won by Minnaar in 2010 at the Queen Elisabeth Competition in Brussels. The following year, this prestigious award gained him a Borletti-Buitoni Trust Fellowship, which made it possible, among other things, for him to produce his first CD. This CD, which included Rachmaninoff’s rarely played First Piano Sonata and Ravel’s ‘Miroirs’, was praised by reviewers and received an Edison award in the following year.

Minnaar’s talent had already attracted attention at the Amsterdam Conservatory, where he completed his studies summa cum laude under Jan Wijn. Soon afterwards he was invited to appear as a soloist with various orchestras. He worked with conductors including Marin Alsop, Frans Brüggen, and Edo de Waart. He appeared in recitals and was a guest at various festivals, many of them in France. For example, in 2013 Minnaar performed at the well-known piano festival in La Roque D’Anthéron, where all the most prominent members of the piano world make their appearance. Minnaar also performed at festivals in countries such as China and Bahrein. At the end of 2013 he will make his recital debut in Tokyo.

 

In 2008, when Minnaar made the decision to compete internationally, he took part in the Geneva Competition, where he was awarded a second prize. This was followed in 2010 by the Elisabeth Everts Prize and the award, as mentioned above, from the famous Brussels competition. It was particularly because of this latter award that the national and international spotlights began to focus on Minnaar. Reviewers praised the natural quality of his playing, his musical intelligence, feeling for structure, modesty, and his solid work ethic: “a winning combination”. “A young pianist of international standing has appeared,“ wrote Peter de Bruin, reviewer for the NRC, in 2010.

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Bach Inspirations (2013)

Bach, Franck, Liszt, Grainger

Hannes Minnaar

    Opus Klassiek, sept 2016

Dit was de tweede – en schitterend opgenomen – cd waarmee Hannes Minnaar zich (al in 2013) presenteerde, nog voor zijn avontuurlijke en meeslepende Beethoven vertolkingen, samen met Jan Willem de Vriend. Over zijn technisch meesterschap hoeven we het niet te hebben, dat is evident. Over zijn fantasierijke omgang met repertoire al evenmin. Met een toelichting van eigen hand bewijst hij bovendien ook met de pen uitstekend overweg te kunnen. Maar het allerbelangrijkste is dat hij met een aangeboren muzikaliteit al deze eigenschappen weet te combineren tot een totaalervaring die er niet om liegt: Bach op de piano, een onweerstaanbaar anachronisme dat, als het zo goed gedaan wordt als op deze cd, de gelukzalige stemming teweegbrengt waarin die Seele ruht.

Siebe Riedstra[read full review]

    Gramophone

"early contender for Gramophone instrumental record of the year. The piano sound is a real pleasure.....the programme is artfully conceived"

    Volkskrant 13 november 2013 -

"Je hoort gewijde klanken die boven en onder elkaar schuiven en samen rechtstreeks naar de hemel reiken"

Biella Luttmer

    Trouw -

"Wat een kunstukje haalt Minnaar uit in het uiterst complexe en vliegensvlug gespeelde 'Nun freut euch, lieben Christen g'mein'! Alleen Busoni zelf deed hem dat na."

    Telegraaf -

"Minnaar beroert de toetsen op zijn karakteristieke manier: vanuit een volmaakte rust, glashelder en niet zelden op de grens van het onderkoelde"

Bach Inspirations (2013)

Bach, Franck, Liszt, Grainger

Hannes Minnaar

Digital Converters: DCS 904 AD & DCS 954 DA
Mastering Engineer: Tom Peeters
Mastering Equipment: KEF Reference series 107
Microphones: B&K 4003, modified by Rens Heijnis
Mixing Board: Rens Heijnis custom made
Producer: Tom Peeters
Recording Engineer: Tom Peeters
Recording location: Westvest90-Hall, Schiedam, Holland
Recording Software: Pyramix
Recording Type & Bit Rate: DSD64

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COBRA0038: Bach Inspirations
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Tracks.
1.
Bach Inspirations - Prelude
Bach
00:03:23   Select quality & channels above
2.
Bach Inspirations - Fugue
Bach
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3.
Bach Inspirations - Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme
Bach
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4.
Bach Inspirations - Nun komm'der Heiden Heiland
Bach
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5.
Bach Inspirations - Nun freut euch, lieben Christen gmein
Bach
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6.
Bach Inspirations - Prelude
Franck
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7.
Bach Inspirations - Choral
Franck
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8.
Bach Inspirations - Fugue (2CH) -
Franck
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9.
Bach Inspirations - Preludio (2CH) -
Bach
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10.
Bach Inspirations - Gavotte (2CH) -
Bach
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11.
Bach Inspirations - Gigue (2CH) -
Bach
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12.
Bach Inspirations - Die Seele ruht in Jesu Händen(2CH) -
Bach
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13.
Bach Inspirations - Ach, bleib bei uns, Herr Jesu Christ (Choral) (2CH) -
Bach
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14.
Bach Inspirations - Ach, bleib bei uns, Herr Jesu Christ (Choral Prelude) (2CH) -
Bach
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15.
Bach Inspirations - Fantasie über das Thema B-A-C-H(2CH) -
Liszt
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16.
Bach Inspirations - Fuga über das Thema B-A-C-H(2CH) -
Liszt
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17.
Bach Inspirations - Blithe Bells (2CH) -
Grainger
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