music – specifically his Cello Suites – excites and enthuses necessarily
And the extraordinary recordings of Jean-Guihen Queyras (Harmonia
Mundi) and - brand new - Sebastian Klinger (Oehms)
further contribute to making over two hours of non-stop
solo cello unusually
entertaining. Both sway the ears with impeccable technique
and a wonderfully caught, natural tone. Klinger (on a 1736
Camillus Camilli) more by more means of dynamism and flexing
his well oiled muscles – Queyras (on a 1696 Gioffredo Cappa)
with beautifully controlled ardor.
former cellist of the Ensemble Intercontemporain has already made a name for himself
outside France with performances and wonderful recordings – including
Schubert’s Arpeggione with
Alexandre Tharaud and the Dvořák Cello Concerto, where
he set down one of the most moving slow movements on record.
Klinger, who studied with Heinrich Schiff and Boris Pergamenschikow,
became the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra’s first solo
cellist at 27 and is as yet unknown to most American concert-going
audiences. Judging from this recording, that will
soon change … if his orchestral duties permit
the occasional tour as soloist.
are similar in many ways – superior technical quality, rich
tone, generous acoustic (both were recorded in a church),
tempos – but Klinger uses a six-stringed cello for the last
Suite, which makes for a slightly calmer, more fragile impression
and at 420 hertz Klinger also uses a slightly lower than
usual tuning for a less edgy and, well, ‘high-strung’, sound.
That points to Klinger having absorbed many lessons from
the ‘Historically Informed’ school, even if his interpretation
is decidedly not “HIP”; Peter Wispelwey would be the choice
Anyone who wants
to place a modern recording next to their Pierre Fournier
in their collection but shies away from the wilful individualism
of Gavriel Lipkind will be exceedingly well served by either
of these interpretations.
Jens F. Laurson
Reviews of other recordings of the cello suites