Bach: Sonatas and Partitas for Solo Violin, BWV 1001-1006

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WORKS: Sonatas and Partitas for Solo Violin, BWV 1001-1006
PERFORMER: Nathan Milstein (violin)
CATALOGUE NO: ZDMB 64793 2 AAD mono (1954/55/56)
The late Nathan Milstein’s 1975 stereo remake (DG mid-price) was his own preferred version of these pillars of the violin repertoire with which he had been so associated since his youth in Odessa. But his (broadly faster) mid-Fifties New York account, now remastered and restored by EMI, was a famous yardstick of its time – a grandly phrased, aristocratically structured, Romantically resonant statement to treasure beside Menuhin and Heifetz. These are epic virtuoso performances justifying Milstein’s view that with this music the performer could ‘bask in the most glamorous light’. Stylistically, purists will object to their expressive liberty and gesture. But few will be able to resist their artistry or intensity of delivery. Ates Orga