One of the most grown-up review sites around

54,514 reviews
and more.. and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here



International mailing

Founder: Len Mullenger                                    Editor in Chief:John Quinn             

Some items
to consider


paid for


100th birthday of Mieczyslaw Weinberg on December 8, 2019.
Renate Eggbrecht has recorded all 3 violin Sonatas

FOGHORN Classics

Mozart Brahms
Clarinet Quintets

New Releases

Naxos Classical

Click to see New Releases
Get 10% off using code musicweb10

Nimbus Podcast

Obtain 10% discount

Special offer 50% off
15CDs £83 incl. postage

Musicweb sells the following labels

Altus 10% off
Atoll 10% off
CRD 10% off
Hallé 10% off
Lyrita 10% off
Nimbus 10% off
Nimbus Alliance
Prima voce 10% off
Red Priest 10% off
Retrospective 10% off
Saydisc 10% off
Sterling 10% off

Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
Rob Barnett
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger


Support us financially by purchasing this from

Robert SCHUMANN (1810-1856)
Fantasie in C, Op. 17 (1839) [49:31]
Bernhard Ruchti (piano)
rec. 2020, KKL Luzern Concert Hall, Switzerland
MUSICJUSTMUSIC MJM-CCK190 [CD: 49:31+ DVD: 131 mins]

The American-born Swiss pianist, Bernhard Ruchti, offers us a rather unusual and breathtaking rendition of Robert Schuman’s masterpiece, the Fantasie in C major, Op. 17. This recording belongs to Ruchti’s “A Tempo Project,” composed of selected works of Beethoven, Chopin, and Liszt. Each CD is accompanied by a high-quality video recording in DVD format with a short historical, aesthetic, and performative introduction in both English and German languages. According to the pianist himself, “A Tempo Project” aims to bring historical tempos back to life. To do so, Ruchti reinterprets the metronome marks of early nineteenth-century sources in the framework of the whole-beat metronome practice (WBMP).

Without entering the heated debate on whether WBMP is musicologically accurate or not, Ruchti’s interpretation of Schumann’s Fantasie is a well-crafted performance, full of musical expression. With slower tempi, sustaining a unified phrasing can become an increasingly problematic task. Ruchti addresses phrasing with a very refined control of dynamics and agogics. This live performance of the Fantasie is full of soul, contrary to the numerous studio recordings which are perfectly edited in postproduction, but dead in the end. The liveliness of Ruchti’s version is mixed with a sense of artistic merit and musical splendor, for which it could be easily called a first-class performance.

Ruchti’s meticulous study of the score is manifested through innovative and bold choices. For instance, the coda of the third movement presents a well-constructed accelerando. The original arpeggios in octaves are eventually dislocated, forming an interlocked dialogue between the right and left hands. Another fabulous example of Ruchti’s sensitivity is the opening of the first movement. Texture builds up progressively, leading into a passionate melody that ultimately disintegrates into silence. It is the profound expression of musical silences that distinguishes this performance. During the transitional pauses, greatly magnified by the pianist, one can feel a sense of suspense, anticipation, and unearthliness that is hard to come by these days.

Prof. Dr. Bohdan Syroyid Syroyid

Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat



Recordings of the Month


From Ocean’s Floor


Conner Riddle Songs

Rodzinski Sibelius

Of Innocence and Experience


Symphonies 1, 2, 3