CD of the Week: Tanya Gabrielian: Remix

Tanya Gabrielian was a student at the Royal Academy of Music when an injury landed her in the hospital for a month. Listening to Bach during  that painful time was transformative for her as musician. In this album, she rebuilds suites by J.S. Bach using transcriptions by a colorful assortment of composers.

We may think of the practice of sampling and remixing music as a modern phenomenon, but it's not. Bach frequently used bits of pieces he'd already written in new compositions, and made a habit of transcribing his works for solo violin or cello for keyboard. Many composers after his day have, in turn, taken Bach’s original works and reworked (or "remixed") them into colorful new visions for keyboard.

In this week's CD of the week, American pianist Tanya Gabrielian presents several Bach pieces, but with a twist: each movement has been transcribed by a different composer. The multi-movement works journey through transcriptions by Camille Saint-Saëns, Arturo Cardelús, Leopold Godowsky, and even a few “remixes” by Bach himself.

In the end, you get a Bach listening experience that you simply can’t get anywhere else. A familiar journey through Bach’s music now becomes one of plot twists and cliffhangers, accomplished equally in part by the transcribing composers' different styles of musical arrangement and by Gabrielian's pianism.

Listen to a track from the album:

For more information, to sample tracks, and to purchase this recording, visit MSR Classics.

Learn more about Tanya Gabrielian.

Track listing:

1. Bach/transc. Alexander Siloti: Violin Partita No. 2: Chaconne
2-5. Bach: Violin Sonata No. 3
               i. Adagio - transc. J.S. Bach
               ii. Fuga - transc. Camille Saint-Saëns
               iii. Largo - transc. Camille Saint-Saëns
               iv. Allegro assai - transc. Arturo Cardelús
6. Bach/transc. Alexander Siloti: Violin Sonata No. 2: Andante
7-12. Bach/transc. Leopold Godowsky: Cello Suite No. 2