Klassik Heute 10/10/10 June 2012; Klassik.com: Double 5 Stars August 2012; Music Web International September 2012: "With yet another wonderful disc of C.P.E. Bach’s keyboard sonatas, Miklós Spányi continues his traversal of this long and rich series of works. If you know and like this music, you’ll probably want to get this latest release. If not, this is as good a place as any to discover this music".
Around 1740, when he was starting out on a career as a composer, C.P.E. Bach was eager to establish himself as a composer who could keep up with the stylistic developments taking place in the musical centres of Europe. As a consequence, he produced an astonishing number of substantial new keyboard compositions in the early 1740’s, but also returned to earlier works, revising them extensively. These years saw the publication of two ambitious sets of six sonatas each – the ‘Prussian’ (1740-41) and the ‘Württemberg’(1742-44) – but also the composition of a number of other sonatas of a similar scale and grandeur. These were never gathered into collections by the composer, but were published separately or – in some cases – circulated among performers in manuscript. On the present disc, four such sonatas have been included, all of them with large-scale outer movements which appear to be telling complex and exciting stories, painted in the most vivid of colours. The performances by Miklós Spányi throughout this ongoing series have been described as ‘technically flawless, and, above all, of a singular expressivity and wealth of contrast’ (Klassik-Heute.de). To match the works on the present instalment, Spányi has chosen to play them on a newly built clavichord by the eminent builder Joris Potvlieghe, an instrument with the proportions of the largest German clavichords of the late 18th century. With its louder and more colourful sound it emphasizes the ‘serious’ character of these sonatas and helps in realising the great contrasts required by Bach in both musical textures and dynamics, aspects which are also aided by the rich acoustics of the splendid 18th-century Keizerszaal (‘Imperial Hall’) in the Belgian town of Sint-Truiden, where the recording took place.
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