JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH - Inventions and Sinfonias

JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH - Inventions & Sinfonias - Karin Kei Nagano (Piano) - 774204877125 - Released: March 2017 - Analekta AN28771

Pianist Karin Kei Nagano (daughter of conductor Kent Nagano) delivers a straightforward, unencumbered and robust account of Johann Sebastian Bach's keyboard Inventions & Sinfonias, on this her second recording for the Analekta label. Under her hands there is no justification for tempo alterations la Gould, or the inclusion of perceived ornamentations la Hewitt. She takes these pieces at face value, and projects them as what they are: short studies on the basics of balancing and mastering the playing of 2 parts (Inventions) and 3 parts (Sinfonias) simultaneously. Bach wrote these as keyboard lessons for his sons to help them master the instrument, and never imagined that 300 years later they would still be admired, analysed, studied and used as learning material by piano students all over the world. But despite being short and elemental, they still contain the stamp of Bach's genius and harmonic fluency. And that is precisely the elements that Karin Kei Nagano brings to the foreground in her clear and precise performance, without sounding flat or mechanical. She instills the presence of a feeling human being at the keyboard, but not one that acts like a performing seal. Recommended!

Jean-Yves Duperron - April 2017