Johann Sebastian Bach - Life And Works

Saturday 1st November 2003
Johann Sebastian Bach - Life And Works
Johann Sebastian Bach - Life And Works

STYLE: Classical
RATING 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10
OUR PRODUCT CODE: 8319-
LABEL: Naxos 855805154
FORMAT: CD Album

Reviewed by Steven Whitehead

This four CD set with accompanying 116 page booklet is a wonderful survey of the life and works of Christendom's greatest composer. The writer and narrator is Jeremy Siepmann who guides us through the complex life of Johann Sebastian, played by John Shrapnel. The musical extracts are generous although Bach was such a prolific composer it must have been a thankless task deciding what to omit. The second musical example, played in full, is the “Toccata And Fugue In D Minor”, probably the most famous piece of organ music ever. And then it gets better. I cannot praise this biography highly enough. One quibble could be that all the musical illustrations come from the Naxos catalogue but it is their project and one seldom goes wrong with Naxos. The fact is that we get four and a half hours of listening pleasure for less than 20 pounds. Siepmann tells his story with a light touch, anchoring Bach’s genius to his deep faith and the music is truly sublime.

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.

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