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Goldberg Vars

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1 new from CDN$ 25.96 2 used from CDN$ 59.99

Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 1 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: EMI Classics
  • ASIN: B0018NIQ8G
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #309,609 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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1. Aria - Andante espressivo
2. Variation 1 - Allegro moderato
3. Variation 2 - Allegretto
4. Variation 3 - Canone all'unisuono (Poco andante, ma con moto)
5. Variation 4 - L'istesso movimento
6. Variation 5 - Allegro vivace
7. Variation 6 - Canone alla seconda (Allegretto)
8. Variation 7 - Un poco vivace
9. Variation 8 - Allegro
10. Variation 9 - Canone alla terza (Moderato)
11. Variation 10 - Fughetta (Un poco animato)
12. Variation 11 - Allegro e leggiero
13. Variation 12 - Canone alla quarta in moto contrario (Allegretto moderato)
14. Variation 13 - Andantino
15. Variation 14 - Allegro moderato
16. Variation 15 - Canone alla quinta in moto contratrio (Andante)
17. Variation 16 - Ouverture (Maestoso - Allegretto)
18. Variation 17 - Allegro
19. Variation 18 - Canone alla sesta (Con moto)
20. Variation 19 - Allegro vivace
See all 33 tracks on this disc

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0xa716ea50) out of 5 stars 5 reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa6be8960) out of 5 stars Beautiful rendition by Lim July 8 2008
By Edmond - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Here's the long-waiting third studio album by young Korean pianist Lim, Dong-Hyek. Probably there have been lots of doubtful guesses around his new Bach recording, but don't worry, HE DID IT AGAIN. Through every track, he just shows what he really can do so well. It's a elegant and tender, but not soft or weak Bach, no doubt. This young genius handles every melody so simply, but with dramatic approach. Maybe he never got the chance to reveal his virtuosic techniques, but his sensitivity and musicality still stand out for an entire moment. Another brilliant performance for Lim.
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa6be8a44) out of 5 stars Surprising, delightful, and original interpretation July 6 2009
By D. R. Greenfield - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I was initially somewhat skeptical of this recording, and bought it mainly because I had read that it was a romanticized Goldberg, with a lot more rubato than normal (normally there is none). This made it an interesting buy, as it is always entertaining to watch accidents in the making. But I found no accidents here, only the sheer delight of a young prodigy putting a fresh spin on an old masterpiece. I suppose you could say that Lim introduces a fair amount of rubato into the work, mainly on the slower variations, but it is far less than I had been led to believe. Nevertheless, in those spots where he does introduce it, he injects a refreshing lyricism into the work, which provides an excellent contrast to the faster variations.

The variations are played effortlessly, and with a rather quick tempo, but not hurriedly. Maybe this is a subjective judgment, but there seems to be a certain plucky confidence to his playing, but not over-confidence. This is a fresh and effortless performance; there is no hesitation or tentativeness present anywhere. Listening carefully, one can even hear him beginning the next variation almost before he has let up on the final chord of the previous one, in several places. This is barely perceptible, but if you listen, you will see what I mean. My first impression was incredulity. But, amazingly, it works, and it lends greater flow and movement to the work.

The Chaconne is an additional delight. It is beautiful and introspective. The Chaconne even eclipses the Variations, giving the disc a rather darker, moodier atmosphere. I can sense that the Chaconne will easily become the main attraction on this disc for most listeners.

I recommend this to anyone looking for an original and exhuberant version of the Goldberg Variations.
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa6c08e64) out of 5 stars An Incredible Performance Sept. 3 2008
By Ivan Weiser - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
The other reviewers (who are absolutely on the mark re Lim's nuanced and superb playing of the Goldbergs) did not comment on the disk's amazing final track, Busoni's transcription of Bach's Chaconne in D Minor from the Partita No. 2 for unaccompanied violin.

I own or have heard many recordings of this marvelous chaconne, and Lim's tops them all. His recording of this great piece of music is nothing short of thrilling. DOWNLOAD IT NOW - You won't be sorry!
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa75d1bf4) out of 5 stars JS Bach Goldberg Variations: Dong Hyek Lim: Strongly played, with Poise & Understanding March 7 2009
By drdanfee - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This young South Korean pianist is a new name to me. He started piano lessons young, and began winning competition prizes young, too. That would make him familiar among the younger players insofar as he is making the commitments needed to keep going in the face of competitions, early concerts, and the mixed pressures that always seem to be brought to bear on any young musician anywhere near to being a prodigy.

His win in South Korea got him sent to Moscow to study, first at the youth music school, then at the famed Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory as the youngest student who had ever matriculated there. He's attractive no doubt, and musical no doubt; chances are that if Tchaikovsky still taught there, he might have caught the composer's eye and ear. He kept entering competitions, and took prizes in the Busoni and other forums. By 2001, he won first prize in the Marguerite Long-Jacques Thibaud competition in Paris, also being awarded an additional five other competition awards. He has been giving public concerts for a while now, and this disc is actually his third disc for EMI Classics. The first recording (2002) was in the EMI series called, Martha Argerich Presents. That one won the French Diapason d'Or award. Then he did a second (2004) EMI disc of Chopin, winning another French award, The Choc du monde of Le Monde de la Musique. This third EMI disc is him playing JS Bach.

It is very risky, indeed, for a player so young to tackle the Goldberg Variations. To be sure, Bach's commission was from Count Keyserling, meant to be played during long insomniac nights by the count's young assistant. Nevertheless, the composer did not stint on technical, nor musical challenges.

Fortunately, like the young Glenn Gould - but approaching Bach on the modern piano from his own point of view - this player makes it very worth while to give him your time. The piano on this disc is beautifully recorded, the venue being Henry Wood Hall. The engineers seem to have found that special sweet spot between getting enough of the keyboard close up to convey the player's relaxed and transparent physicality, while still letting enough of the air and the hall surrounding remain to amplify and bloom and gather. The more immediate comparison that quickly comes to mind is the newish release of Simone Dinnerstein playing the Goldbergs, and though I have not heard that disc completely, just going by excerpts, I think I prefer this one, based both on the sheer piano sound and the playing, too.

This young pianist has no need to hurry or slow, just for making cheap points with odd tempos. He handles the polyphony and the variations aspects in a most straightforward and engaging manner, just letting the Baroque spirit of invention and music speak through him. When it comes to slow playing, he can sustain both tempos and marvelously sung phrases. Several voices do not throw him off, all to the good when it comes to these high marks of Baroque style. When the music falls quiet, the player opens inward, and a subtilized (even spiritualized) flow wells up. There is a whole lot of music going on here, just lots. It is quite a good reminder to us of how deeply engaged some of the younger performers are today, even early on in their work. If you want a youthful match, compare the poise and wisdom of these Goldberg Variations with, say, Julia Fischer's solo violin sonatas and partitas.

Hard to recall that there was a time when JS Bach was something for students and teachers and professional musicians playing in private with friends and family, not mainly music for concert halls. Just imagine.

To wrap up on this disc, the pianist gives us Busoni's piano arrangement of the solo violin chaconne, the one that has long since become famous as a calling card for virtuosos. Occasionally portending the agony of wannabe virtuosos who cannot quite manage it. This piece comes off best if the player has both the technical chops to climb and hang unafraid off sheer mountain cliffs; and the musical heart to convey the piece as music, suitably enlarged by Busoni's grand piano imagination. On this disc, the chaconne comes off, beautifully and brilliantly on both counts. I haven't heard Busoni's chaconne done this well since the EMI debut of Awadagin Pratt.

No need to belabor unfavorable comparisons with the other label's bigtime Asian whiz kid, Lang Lang. Listen and make your own mind up. Given the songful poise and clarity and purpose of Dong Hyek Lim's playing, it is small wonder that he took first prize in the Long-Thibaud, nor that the French critics have fallen all over themselves to publish accolades. There really shouldn't be a dry eye or a hard heart in the house, if he keeps playing like this. Bravo. Bravo. Bravo.
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa6be8624) out of 5 stars Yes, you do too need another set of Goldberg Variations July 20 2008
By J. Thomas - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
If you're like me you already have more Goldbergs recordings than you think you could possibly need, especially since too many of them (Dinnerstein, Perahia, etc) are more the product of industry hype than music for the ages. Some of the very best recordings (Dershavina, Schepkin) you've probably never even heard of. I doubt you've heard of Dong Hyek Lim either, but this recording by a young Korean protege' of Martha Argerich is among the very best. Perfect legato, a powerful technique when needed, but most of all a passionate love for the music
itself. Pretty male asian pianists are a dime a dozen but Dong Hyek Lim is the real thing. His Chopin is outstanding, too; look him up on YouTube.