CD choice #6 (Argerich plays Bach)

51ERLMsJmeLTime goes so very fast: it is Martha Argerich’s 75th birthday today. Here is perhaps still my favourite recording of hers, from 1980. Completely stunning Bach playing. I can’t put it better than Jessica Duchen has:  “Martha Argerich presents intense, minor-key Bach: fierce but pure, finely argued and rhetorical yet never losing the rhythm of dance; expressive but contained and articulated with beautiful clarity. Her intensity is completely compelling from the very first note of the C minor Toccata onwards: she demands, seizes and holds attention at every moment. Her personal vision displays the emotional darkness at the heart of these pieces without any suggestion of mannerism or gimmick.”   If you don’t know this disc, you have missed what is surely one of the greatest ever recordings (and it’s now immediately available for streaming if you have an Apple Music, or similar, subscription.)

But oh how we wish that Argerich had recorded more Bach over the years …

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