5.0 out of 5 stars
The Fascination of J.S.Bach and Casals, April 5 2011
This book provides a fresh look at Bach and Casals, against the background of the times in which they lived. It also makes a thorough, research-based examination of a mystery that has enthralled musicians and music-lovers alike for centuries: why, when and for whom exactly were Bach's six solo suites for cello composed? And another mystery: why was this music, which has been so much loved and played from the start of the twentieth century onwards, neglected for so long? The role of the great cellist Pablo Casals in creating and leading this enthusiasm for the music is examined in parallel. But this is no dry, academic treatise. Siblin has a witty touch and a feeling for the historical details that can capture the imagination of present-day readers. Moreover he is very cautious regarding evidence and the theories that have from time to time gained currency- e.g., the idea that Bach's second wife was the actual author of the cello suites. When I finished reading this, I wanted more. I have been listening to the cello suites with increasing interest and enjoyment; and naturally I am eagerly awaiting Siblin's next book.