“Tangentenflügel. A Flügel with no quills (...) Its lute stop offers a lovely, piercing tone and its knee lever allows the string dampers to be lifted, producing a powerful, magnificent sound” (H.C. Koch, Musikalisches Lexicon, 1802).
A trip back in time, from 1787 to works which, although composed earlier, already contain C.P.E. Bach’s expressive world. His musical testament, the Fantasia in F# minor, is presented here in a particularly moving version, with violin accompaniment.
Excerpt from "Les Folies..." Wq.118
Excerpt from 1st movement of sonata Wq. 78
Excerpt from 2nd movement of sonata Wq. 78
Press round-up :
"This is a most compelling disc which fully reveals the fascinating musical personality of Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach."MusicWeb - Johan van Veen - Octobre 2013
" (...) all in all, quite a range of colours, which is exploited to the full by such a virtuoso as Aline Zylberajch, who is clearly utterly in harmony with Bach's flights of fancy." BC - Early Music Review - June 2013
"I have been absolutely blown away by this recording - not only does it answers my questions about the tangentenfluegel, but it also contains some of the finest performances of CPE Bach that I have heard" Douglas Hollick -The Consort - Summer 2014
Speaking about Johann Sebastian Bach’s second son Carl Philipp Emanuel (1714-1788), Mozart said “he is the father, we are the children”. Indeed, Carl Philipp Emanuel is one of the major musical figures of this key period, the turning point between the baroque and classical aesthetics.
Although he left a large body of work written for instruments of all kinds, the keyboard was always his favourite. He produced a number of collections for it, featuring numerous sonatas and freestyle works such as fantasias, a genre in which he excelled. Aline Zylberajch and Alice Piérot offer a selection of pieces for both violin and keyboard and solo keyboard, all composed during Carl Philipp Emanuel’s mature years, from the 1760s up until his death. The programme has been put together to offer a trip back in time, starting with the Fantasia in F# minor - one of the composer’s last works and often presented as his musical testament, played here in an especially moving version with violin accompaniment - and then moving backwards to pieces which, although older, already feature his whole world of expression in embryonic form.
Carl Philipp Emanuel’s music was much pored over by J. Haydn and much admired by L. von Beethoven; it also profoundly influenced numberless other composers of the late 18th century; indeed, one of Charles Burney’s correspondents later spoke of “Carlphilippmanuelbachomania”, and this programme shows us just how deeply his influence ran.
The recording also offers an opportunity to hear the Tangentenflügel, or tangent piano, an instrument which was very popular in Germany at the time but which has since fallen out of favour. Little strips of wood - the ends of which are left bare and simply rounded off - are propelled vertically into the air, with no escapement system, and strike the string producing a clear, pure sound. These unusual instruments emerged out of a search for combinations of sounds using a system of registers, which offer the performer a large variety of timbres, ranging from the brightest to the softest.
Aline Zylberajch and Alice Piérot are both baroque and pre-classical music specialists. They have performed all over the world and worked with Early Music ensembles such as Les Musiciens du Louvre,Le Concert Spirituel, Le Parlement de Musique, etc. They have made many critically-acclaimed recordings and won numerous awards.They have been playing chamber music together and exploring the late 18th century repertoire for many years, so it was a natural choice for them to share their passion for the music of C.P.E. Bach in this programme, celebrating not only its fiery passion and humour, but also its melancholy and tenderness.The recording was made at La Courroie, a former factory which Alice Piérot has converted so that it can be used in various ways to share and perform a full range of music, from the oldest to the most contemporary.