Reger / Walker - Bach Variations, Op. 81 Traume Am Kamin | RECORD STORE DAY

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Reger / Walker - Bach Variations, Op. 81 Traume Am Kamin
Bach Variations, Op. 81 Traume Am Kamin
Artist: Reger / Walker
Format: CD


Rel. Date: 06/21/2024
UPC: 5029365103107

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A new recording of two major Reger cycles,by a fast-emerging British piano talent.'To fathom his all-powerful might, no humanmay accomplish' - this is the text, from aduet in Bach's Cantata BWV128, which Regertakes as the subject of his Bach Variations,and it may fairly be advanced that Regeraccorded Bach a comparably divine status.At the age of just 31, Reger had by this stageassimilated not only Bachian counterpointbut it's transformation through the ears andimaginations of Schumann and Brahms andothers, and he proceeds to treat the themewith astonishing freedom, testing thetechnique of the performer while reachingfor the limits of the theme's musicalpossibilities over the course of 14 variations.The cycle concludes with a mighty fugue - orfugues, on separate subjects (of Reger's owndevising, eventually welded with the Bachtheme). In his booklet essay, Eden Walkerremarks that the final bars are 'some of themost colossal and victorious of any in theentire piano repertoire.'By contrast, as a salutary demonstration ofReger's versatility, the Traume am Kaminpresent him at his most relaxed andintimate, and anyone who has found it hardto warm to Reger will surely find in this cyclea delightful entry-point to an oftenforbidding catalogue. 'Dreams by theFireside' - Reger's knotty chromaticharmony still underpins the progress ofthese Romantic sketches, but now disguisedby a touch of the 'lateness' that comes overmany artists towards the end of their livesor careers, whether or not they were awareof it. This cycle was Reger's final piano cyclebefore his death in 1916, aged 41, and themood of the cycle is perhaps also marked bya necessary escapism from the violentbloodshed around him.Born in 1995, Eden Walker has become aspecialist in the ultra-virtuoso end ofRomantic piano writing at the hands ofcomposers such as Alkan, Busoni andGodowsky (and Reger). Based in Hamburg,he now teaches at the StaatlicheJugendmusikschule, as well as furthering hisown studies and giving concerts acrossGermany and the UK.