Cardelús, Godowsky, Saint-Saëns & Siloti

Johann Sebastian Bach




“[ * * * * * ] Sit back, relax, and let your spirit soar. I’ve been waiting for an album like this... there are some marvelous moments to be had from this release... The performances are transcendent, idiomatic, and, simply, gorgeous. Pianist Tanya Gabrielian [is] a heralded artist of depth and intellectual achievement... Great sound, great performances, and I hope to hear more from her.”
Steven Ritter, Audiophile Audition [October 2017]
“I have been fortunate to see American pianist Gabrielian in recital a couple of times... I had high expectations for this [CD] and was not disappointed. [In Siloti’s arrangement of the Andante from Violin Sonata 3] Gabrielian’s melodic line truly sings, with exquisite dynamic shaping... Gabrielian plays the complete Violin Sonata 3, but has to pull together arrangements by three composers [and Bach himself]... The finished product does not seem like the work of different composers who lived hundreds of years apart, but is a cohesive, satisfying work. Much of the credit is to Bach’s original here, and also to a sensitive, skillful pianist... Today, with pianists like Gabrielian, who are fully in tune with the harmonies and counterpoint added to Bach’s original by Godowsky (and the others), we can enjoy recordings that are actually quite a revelation. She has all of the technique to make the difficulties vanish as she brings the musical lines to the fore. She captures the essence of each dance movement. There is also plenty of power and excitement here, in the final movements especially. I cannot remember enjoying a disc more, and this will remain on my active listening stack for quite some time.”
Harrington, American Record Guide [November/December 2017]
“Tanya Gabrielian is phenomenal... her Bach performances on the present CD supremely beautiful and inspired, getting to the inner truth of these transcriptions by famous keyboard masters... the tonal beauty she derives from her instrument, a Shigeru Kawai EX #94 will cause pianists everywhere to flock to their nearest Kawai dealer for a test drive.”
Phil Muse, Audio Society of Atlanta [October 2017]
“the chance to hear some rather unfamiliar versions of some very familiar music is quite welcome. Gabrielian brings considerable passion to Cello Suite No. 2, and indeed the whole program here is one of dedication that borders on devotion... Gabrielian takes an old-school approach of using the emotional scope of the piano to highlight and expand the feelings generated by Bach’s notes on their own... there is considerable use of pedal and much expressive warmth in the playing...Gabrielian treats the pieces with care, involvement and considerable feeling... this is a lovely disc, played feelingly and heartfelt from start to finish.”
Mark J. Estren, InfoDad [October 2017]
“[Gabrielian's] playing is excellent...Recommended.”
Rick Anderson, CD HotList for Libraries [October 2017]
“the album itself is an intensely personal statement, probably more so than just about any available recording of music that Bach composed with the keyboard in mind... the album turns out to be an interesting study of the art of transcription... listening to Gabrielian’s performance on this album [of Bach's own transcription] tweaked my curiosity as to how Bach would have played it on one of his own keyboard instruments... I have no idea what sorts of programs Gabrielian has planned for her [upcoming performance] tour, but there is no doubt in my mind that Saint-Saëns’ transcription of the fugue from BWV 1005 should make for one hell of an encore!”
Stephen Smoliar, The Rehearsal Studio [September 2017]

ABOUT THE RECORDING - I started playing the piano at the age of three, but it took almost fifteen years for me to understand the power music can have. When I was a child, I never felt the calling to be a musician. And after high school, when I attended the Royal Academy of Music, I felt as out of place and unwelcome as ever. I found solace through martial arts and trained intensively in Zhuan Shu Kuan, a northern Chinese style of kung fu. One evening while sparring, I slipped on a puddle of sweat. As I fell forwards, the pianist in me pulled back my arms to protect my hands. I landed on my head, twisted my spine, and spent the next month shuffling between nine hospitals and two operating rooms. A teenager maneuvering through a foreign medical system, I was entirely alone and wholly uncomfortable during my hospitalization, with nothing to distract me from the painful reality of my situation. Except that I did have a stack of CDs with me, among them Bach’s unaccompanied works for violin and cello. Until this point, I had been so immersed in the practice of music that I had never taken a step back to appreciate the experience of music. Now I had the time to listen—all I had was time—and listening elevated me above the hospital rooms, the waiting, and my own dull discomfort. Without Bach, I wouldn’t have made it through that month. When it came time to pick the program for this album, the choice was obvious. Bach had lifted me from one of my lowest moments and made me into what years of practice had not: a musician. So I have chosen here my favorite pieces from those unaccompanied works for strings that I listened to during the time of my hospitalization. These new and rarely performed piano transcriptions have brought Bach’s music into the 21st century. And I hope you can find in them something to lift you above the daily discomforts of the world. Surely they come from somewhere even more beautiful. [Tanya Gabrielian]

Hailed by the London Times as “a pianist of powerful physical and imaginative muscle”, Tanya Gabrielian has captivated audiences worldwide with her gripping performances. She has performed on four continents in acclaimed venues including Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, Sydney Opera House, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Wigmore Hall and the Salle Cortot with such orchestras as the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, and the Armenian Philharmonic.

Tanya shot onto the international stage at the age of twenty with back-to-back victories in the Scottish International Piano Competition and Aram Khachaturian International Piano Competition. Since then, performance engagements have included Alice Tully Hall and the 92nd Street Y in New York, Dame Myra Hess Concert Series in Chicago, Edinburgh International Festival, Glasgow Royal Concert Hall, and a return recital engagement at Wigmore Hall in London. Tanya’s Southbank debut recital in the Purcell Room in London, presented by the Philharmonia Orchestra, was chosen as “Performance of the Year” by Seen and Heard International. She has also been featured on the cover of Clavier magazine.

In addition to the traditional concert stage, Tanya is passionate about inspiring new generations of musicians and music lovers in diverse settings, dedicated to community engagement, education, and activism through art. Projects have included collaborations with the National Alliance on Mental Illness in programs featuring composers with mental illnesses, highlighting the stigma around mental health issues; founding an interactive performance series for patients at the New York State Psychiatric Institute; an installation with the artist Fran Bull for the exhibit In Flanders Fields: A Meditation on War; and a multidisciplinary collaboration combining Haydn’s Seven Last Words of Our Savior on the Cross with final statements from executed death row inmates. Tanya was awarded the Pro Musicis International Award and the McGraw-Hill Robert Sherman Award for Music Education and Community Outreach for her work.

Tanya’s interests have always been diverse. Admitted to Harvard University to study biomedical engineering at the age of sixteen, Tanya instead pursued a career in music, completing her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees at the Royal Academy of Music in London, originally studying both piano and viola. She received the prize for the best final recital for all six years of study and received a DipRAM, the highest performance award given by the Royal Academy of Music. Tanya then finished her studies at The Juilliard School as the only candidate accepted for the prestigious Artist Diploma, an extraordinarily selective post-graduate residency program.

Tanya Gabrielian is a Shigeru Kawai Recording Artist.

[ www.tanyagabrielian.com ]
CHACONNE from Violin Partita No. 2 in D minor, BWV 1004
Transcribed by Alexander Siloti

Adagio | Transcribed by Johann Sebastian Bach
Fuga | Transcribed by Camille Saint-Saëns
Largo | Transcribed by Camille Saint-Saëns
Allegro assai | Transcribed by Arturo Cardelús

ANDANTE from Violin Sonata No. 2 in A minor, BWV 1003
Transcribed by Alexander Siloti

Transcribed by Leopold Godowsky
Minuet I & II

MSR Classics