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19 March 2021
"Van der Ent does offer a new and highly personal performance of Bach's music."Fanfare, 28-9-2021
The young Dutch violinist Bob van der Ent has received wide acclaim for his impeccable technique, seasoned interpretations and characteristic style.
With his recording of Paganini’s 24 caprices, Bob van der Ent has become the first Dutch violinist of his generation – and one of just a few in the world – to have released the entire cycle.
His debut album Dutch Violin Sonatas, released in 2013 on Aliud Records, was an international success, receiving rave reviews in OpusKlassiek and International Record Review.
In 1993 Bob van der Ent was one of the youngest students admitted to the special Young Talent department at the Conservatory of Amsterdam. There he studied violin with Jan Repko and Vesko Eschkenazy (the concertmaster of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra), with additional classes from Davina van Wely and Herman Krebbers. Bob van der Ent attended masterclasses at home and abroad from the likes of Donald Weilerstein, Eduard Grach, Ivry Gitlis and Pierre Amoyal. After auditioning, he was admitted to the course given by Shmuel Ashkenazy at the Mozarteum in Salzburg.
Bob van der Ent won first prizes from a very young age at Iordens Violin Competition (the Netherlands’ national contest for young violinists) and the Prinses Christina Competition. While still studying, he was a prizewinner at the National Oskar Back Violin Competition and also received a special award at the world-renowned international Wieniawsy-Lipinsky Competition in Poland.
Following his debut at the age of ten with the Dutch Youth String Orchestra conducted by Roland Kieft, Bob van der Ent went on to perform as a soloist in major violin concertos. He gave his first recital at the age of twelve, and has performed in the United States, Russia and all around Europe, as well as at all important venues and festivals in the Netherlands. He can also be heard on radio and television.
Johann Sebastian Bach was a German composer and musician of the Baroque period. He enriched established German styles through his skill in counterpoint, harmonic and motivic organisation, and the adaptation of rhythms, forms, and textures from abroad, particularly from Italy and France. Bach's compositions include the Brandenburg Concertos, the Goldberg Variations, the Mass in B minor, two Passions, and hundreds of cantatas. His music is revered for its technical command, artistic beauty, and intellectual depth.
Bach's abilities as an organist were highly respected during his lifetime, although he was not widely recognised as a great composer until a revival of interest in and performances of his music in the first half of the 19th century. He is now generally regarded as one of the greatest composers of all time.
Van der Ent does offer a new and highly personal performance of Bach's music.
Bob van der Ent is, by way of contrast, a relative unknown, but one who has done some phenomenal work here. Both players use baroque bows, but Van der Ent is also using an instrument in full baroque set-up, with three unwound gut strings and the fingerboard and neck and bass bar of an 18th Century instrument;
American Record Guide, 01-9-2021
Van der Ent plays the works with the baroque bow and also chooses gut strings on his modern violin. This is to be able to add more nuances and to make full use of the overtone-rich warmth of the gut strings.
Bob van der Ent deeply touches the core of what this music can give us: comfort, hope, emotion and vitality