Tuesday, May 19, 2020
Johann Sebastian Bach, Keyboard Partita No. 4, etc., Marija Ilic, Piano
It's an almost whimsical reading of some classics, sounding almost like she is recalling the music in memory with some feeling of past-in-present, some fond associations the music brings to her. Perhaps I am projecting into the music how I myself feel about it? Not exactly, though, because this is a series of delicately dreamful readings, not a romping horserace like some of Glen Gould's classic interpretations, but then the choices reflect a reflection, a reflectivity more than a flurry.
So the two Adagios (BWV 1016 and 968) are calm and introspective, the "Six Little Preludes" have a brittle delicacy. But then the "Partita No. 4" has the deep waters of the "heavier," somewhat more profound Bach and Ms. Ilic gives it all the weight it demands.
In the liners they mention that the Times praise her for her "quiet intensity." Yes, I hear that, too. And with this particular setting and these interesting repertoire choices you have a real keeper. I am glad to have it and I suspect you'd be too, if you love Bach on piano. Bravo.