Hannes Minnaar

Goldberg Variations

Price: € 25.95
Format: SACD
Label: Challenge Classics
UPC: 0608917285925
Catnr: CC 72859
Release date: 24 September 2021
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Label
Challenge Classics
UPC
0608917285925
Catalogue number
CC 72859
Release date
24 September 2021

"Hannes Minnaar brings many positive assets to Bach’s Goldberg Variations.  The pianist clearly enjoys modifying voicings, amplifying textures, and shifting accents on the repeats "

Classics Today, 30-11-2021
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About the album

We at Challenge are proud to present a new account of Goldberg Variations by critically acclaimed young pianist Hannes Minnaar.
His rendition of Goldbergs sums up all the features of a ‘contemporary’ interpretation at the highest degree:
- Transparent, detailed, and crystal-clear phrasing: each and all notes are discernible.
- A supreme – but not artificial nor mannered – control and care of tone and sound: touch, colour and timbre are all fruit of a clearly deep insight and work.
- A smooth flow of the discourse: a solid overall concept of the work structure and a plain, simple (never emphasized) ‘singing’ of the melodic line. (Even when he takes a very slow tempo – as in the famous Variation no. 25, about 30% slower than usual – he always sustains the melody, that means it is not the tempo that makes the melody living, but the capacity to make it flow, to ‘connect’ sounds and silences).
- These Goldbergs are not told as a narrative: it is not a dramatic tale, but the architectural structure is well visible. It is not a story, it is a three-dimensional visual art work.
- Northern Star gave Minnaar the sound that perfectly matches his concept of the work. The rest is made by the unique Chris Maene piano.
A ‘Goldberg’ for the 21st Century.
Op zijn nieuwe album bij Challenge Records speelt de bevlogen pianist Hannes Minnaar de Goldbergvariaties van Johann Sebastian Bach met een geheel 'eigentijdse' interpretatie. Minnaar vertelt geen dramatisch verhaal, maar laat een architectonische structuur zien, een driedimensionaal beeldend kunstwerk, kristalhelder, waarin alle noten te horen zijn. Dit is een ‘Goldberg’ voor de 21e eeuw.

In de zomer van 2020 maakte Hannes Minaar met de Goldbergvariaties een tournee langs grote stadskerken in Zwolle, Amsterdam, Breda, Naarden, Rotterdam en Groningen. Hoewel de pianist de van muzikanteske en compositorische virtuositeit doordrongen Goldbergvariaties beschouwt als een van Bachs meest seculiere werken, werd voor deze tournee gezocht naar kathedrale ruimtes. Daar waar, in de periode van de coronapandemie, veilig ruim honderd bezoekers per concert terechtkunnen en er toch een gevoel van intimiteit gecreëerd kan worden.

In de rijke akoestiek van de monumentale ruimtes van de kerken kregen de uitvoeringen een bijna ritueel karakter. De rechtsnarige, en daardoor zeer transparant klinkende, vleugel gebouwd door Chris Maene, reisde met Minnaar mee en kwam prachtig tot zijn recht in die omgeving. Voor deze opname wilde de pianist iets van dat ‘gevoel’ meenemen. Zodoende koos hij voor de rijke akoestiek van De Waalse Kerk in Amsterdam als opnamelocatie.

Bij de cd hoort ook een bonus cd met werk van de Zeeuwse componist Daan Manneke. Hij componeerde op verzoek van Minnaar speciaal voor de concertserie, een werk dat als opmaat tot de monumentale Goldbergvariaties kon dienen. Het kreeg de titel ‘Gedanken zu Bach’, met als ondertitels ‘Ach wie flüchtig, ach wie nichtig’ en ‘A.D. 2020’, verwijzingen naar de belangrijkste inspiratiebron en de bijzondere periode tijdens de coronapandemie, waarin het stuk ontstond.
Wir bei Challenge sind stolz darauf, eine neue Interpretation der Goldberg-Variationen durch den von der Kritik gefeierten jungen Pianisten Hannes Minnaar zu präsentieren.
Seine Wiedergabe der Goldbergs fasst alle Merkmale einer 'zeitgenössischen' Interpretation auf höchstem Niveau zusammen:
- Transparente, detailreiche und kristallklare Phrasierung: Jeder einzelne Ton ist zu erkennen.
- Eine souveräne - aber weder künstliche noch manierierte - Tongebung und Klangpflege: Anschlag, Farbe und Timbre sind das Resultat einer offensichtlich tiefen Einsicht und Arbeit.
- Ein reibungsloser Ablauf des Diskurses: ein solides Gesamtkonzept der Werkstruktur und ein schlichtes, einfaches (niemals betontes) 'Singen' der melodischen Linie. (Selbst wenn er ein sehr langsames Tempo wählt - wie in der berühmten Variation Nr. 25, etwa 30% langsamer als üblich - hält er die Melodie immer aufrecht, das heißt, es ist nicht das Tempo, das die Melodie lebendig macht, sondern die Fähigkeit, sie fließen zu lassen, Töne und Stille zu 'verbinden'.)
- Diese Goldberg Variationen werden nicht als Narrativ erzählt: es ist keine dramatische Erzählung, aber die architektonische Struktur ist gut sichtbar. Es ist keine Geschichte, es ist ein dreidimensionales visuelles Kunstwerk.
Northern Star gab Minnaar den Sound, der perfekt zu seinem Konzept des Werks passt. Den Rest besorgt das einzigartige Klavier von Chris Maene.

Ein 'Goldberg' für das 21. Jahrhundert.

Artist(s)

A convincing tonal colourist and ardent Romantic. He’s a natural talent with a bold streak.’ — Gramophone on Minnaar’s debut solo album with works by Rachmaninoff and Ravel

Dutch pianist Hannes Minnaar is consistently described by the critics as being able to convey musical essence in all its purity. They talk about his spontaneity and naturalness, an ease without superficiality. ‘My overall approach to music is to take a score very seriously, which is not the same as taking it literally. Pianists from earlier days are a constant inspiration in that respect. I admire such artists as Alfred Cortot, who does not position himself between the composer and the piece, yet leaves an unmistakeable mark on the music. Wilhelm Kempff’s aural richness and trueness, for example, is an example of something I aspire to.’

In Spring 2019, Hannes Minnaar performed on the renowned Master Pianists Series in Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw; as the first Dutchman in 20 years. Hailed by the national press as an undisputed success, NRC noted his playing as ‘free of bluff and swagger’ and ‘in deference to the music at all times’. BBC Music Magazine proclaimed his second solo album their Choice of the Month, saying: ’Underlying Bach’s contrapuntal wizardry is a compelling emotional narrative’. On the third solo album, Gramophone wrote: ‘Minnaar’s identification with Fauré’s unique realm of music is complete and his deeply felt interpretations shine with clarity and infinite nuance.’ His album ‘Nox’, containing works by Schumann, Zuidam and Ravel, prompted a flurry of five star reviews in the Dutch press. Het Parool wrote: ‘He joins the ranks of the great pianists of our time’.

Minnaar first gained attention as second prize winner of the Geneva International Music Competition 2008, and third prize winner at the Queen Elisabeth Competition 2010. The influence from his teachers including Jan Wijn, Jacques van Oortmerssen and Ferenc Rados, and masterclasses with Menahem Pressler profoundly informed his performance inspiration. Among conductors, Minnaar has worked with Herbert Blomstedt, Antony Hermus, Xian Zhang and the late Jirí Belohlávek. He collaborates with all major Dutch orchestras including the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, and orchestras throughout Europe. Minnaar was made a Borletti-Buitoni Trust Fellow in 2011, and he received the Dutch Music Award in 2016 – the highest honour bestowed upon a classical musician by the Dutch Ministry of Culture.

Vitally important to Minnaar’s musical raison d’être is his work with the Van Baerle Trio, founded together with violinist Maria Milstein and cellist Gideon den Herder in 2004. Nominated by Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw, they were ECHO Rising Stars 2013–14. The 250th anniversary of Beethoven has been a major focus for Minnaar in recent seasons both in performance and recordings. His discography includes Beethoven’s complete piano concertos, violin sonatas and piano trios.

Press

Hannes Minnaar brings many positive assets to Bach’s Goldberg Variations.  The pianist clearly enjoys modifying voicings, amplifying textures, and shifting accents on the repeats 
Classics Today, 30-11-2021

In addition, Hannes Minnaar makes a remarkable effort to give each piece its own style, according to his writing, instead of wanting to unify the sound. Quite a success, in view of the results.
Ritmo, 01-9-2022

These new Goldbergs leave us under the complex and pregnant charm, almost addictive, that emerges from the interpretation of Hannes Minnaar. (...) Hannes Minnaar succeeds to gain an enviable place on the steps of a podium already well populated.
Diapason, 01-6-2022

He plays it brilliantly.....Do I need yet another recording of the Goldbergs in my collection? I didn’t think so. But Minnaar has proven me wrong. Whether you have one too many (or a dozen or so like me) in your collection, this one is worth the listen.
Fanfare magazine, 01-3-2022

An extremely interesting recording that surprises the listener with new details.
Piano News, 01-3-2022

This variation series is a tricky puzzle, but Minnaar knows exactly how the pieces fit together. He is admirably consistent in his playing and makes the variations whirl, trot and shine.
De Volkskrant, 21-12-2021

The main event is much more rewarding than that. It is superb.
American Record Guide, 15-12-2021

He plays with enormous ease and almost the lightness and playfulness of Mozart's piano works. This production deserves a place of honor in the discotheque.
Music Emotion, 15-11-2021

Meanwhile, Hannes Minnaar is far off the mark.....Minnaar articulates sharply and phrases with the nonchalance of a jazz man. Rare, the pianist who mixes so many flavors through his trills, from sober to voluptuous. I will often listen to this beautiful double CD
Luister, 01-11-2021

The sound taken by the Challenge Records technicians is of excellent workmanship: the dynamics are sumptuous, full, capable of unleashing great energy and, at the same time, a convincing naturalness. 
Musicvoice.it, 29-10-2021

Hannes Minnaar has made a beautiful and especially exciting "Goldberg"
Mania, 08-10-2021

In Minnaar's light-hearted approach to this score, nothing stands out that shouldn't be there, nor is there anything to distract from it. The tempi are convincingly embedded, accelerations and decelerations are not an end in themselves, exaggerated agogic accents are omitted (also in the spun-out and only variation in minor: no. 25). Anyone who listens to this rendition with the notation included can only admire Minnaar's meticulousness.
Opus Klassiek, 24-9-2021

The pianist is incredibly consistent in his approach and his tempi; fluctuations are proportional and character differences between the variations are not magnified too much, but serve each other. The perfect trills betray muscular fingers. And taste, of course.
De Volkskrant, 23-9-2021

The consolation of art is palpable in every variation. It is making music without sensationalism and without dogmas, cool and calm. Each of the thirty variations is given a clear profile, although Minnaar eschews extremes in dynamics and phrasing. God lurks in the details and nuance, while his grip on architecture is unmistakable. The richness of sound is remarkable.
NRC, 23-9-2021

The tone is set in the Aria, whose lyrical quality is somewhat lost in the jungle of microrubati. Nevertheless, it is played brilliantly and brilliantly across the board. The encore, Daan Mannekes Gedanken zu Bach, is also very beautiful.
Het Parool, 23-9-2021

Play album
Disc #1
01.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Aria
04:26
02.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 1. a 1 Clav.
01:58
03.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 2. a 1 Clav.
01:38
04.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 3. Canone all’Unisono. a 1 Clav.
01:56
05.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 4. a 1 Clav.
01:03
06.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 5. a 1 ô vero 2 Clav.
01:32
07.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 6. Canone alla Seconda. a 1 Clav.
01:00
08.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 7. a 1 ô 2 vero 2 Clav. Al tempo di Giga
01:42
09.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 8. a 2 Clav.
02:36
10.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 9. Canone alla Terza. a 1 Clav.
02:04
11.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 10. Fugetta. a 1 Clav.
01:32
12.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 11. a 2 Clav.
02:08
13.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 12. Canone alla Quarta. a 1 Clav.
02:46
14.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 13. a 2 Clav.
05:00
15.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 14. a 2 Clav.
02:11
16.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 15. Canone alla Quinta. a 1 Clav.
04:38
17.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 16. Ouverture. a 1 Clav.
02:49
18.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 17. a 2 Clav.
01:50
19.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 18. Canone alla Sexta. a 1 Clav.
01:44
20.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 19. a 1 Clav.
01:32
21.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 20. a 2 Clav.
01:47
22.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 21. Canone alla Settima. a 1 Clav.
02:50
23.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 22. a 1 Clav. Alla breve
01:33
24.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 23. a 2 Clav.
02:01
25.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 24. Canone all’Ottava. a 1 Clav.
03:11
26.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 25. a 2 Clav. Adagio
09:11
27.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 26. a 2 Clav.
02:01
28.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 27. Canone alla Nona. a 2 Clav.
01:37
29.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 28. a 2 Clav.
02:21
30.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 29. a 1 ô vero 2 Clav.
02:12
31.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Variatio 30. Quodlibet. a 1 Clav.
02:11
32.
Aria mit verschiedenen Veränderungen, BWV 988 ‘Goldberg Variations’: Aria da capo
04:32

Disc #2
01.
Gedanken zu Bach Ach wie flüchtig, ach wie nichtig A.D. 2020: I. Lontano
03:09
02.
Gedanken zu Bach Ach wie flüchtig, ach wie nichtig A.D. 2020: II. Toccata primo
01:12
03.
Gedanken zu Bach Ach wie flüchtig, ach wie nichtig A.D. 2020: III. Aria/Ayre (Ach wie flüchtig, ach wie nichtig/Flow my tears)
02:48
04.
Gedanken zu Bach Ach wie flüchtig, ach wie nichtig A.D. 2020: IV. Intermezzo sospeso
00:49
05.
Gedanken zu Bach Ach wie flüchtig, ach wie nichtig A.D. 2020: V. Evocazione BWV 854 (Berceuse)
01:03
06.
Gedanken zu Bach Ach wie flüchtig, ach wie nichtig A.D. 2020: VI. Toccata secundo
02:25
07.
Aria (from BWV 988)
04:32
show all tracks

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