Six Evolutions - Bach: Cello Suites (2CD)

Sony Classical
$34.99
Current Stock:
SKU:
19075854652
Artist:
Yo-Yo Ma

Yo-Yo Ma's third and final recording of these works. “Bach’s Cello Suites have been my constant musical companions,” Ma says of the music. “For almost six decades, they have given me sustenance, comfort, and joy during times of stress, celebration, and loss. What power does this music possess that even today, after three hundred years, it continues to help us navigate through troubled times?” Yo-Yo Ma is more convinced than ever of the suites’ ability to create shared meaning that extends far beyond the here and now.

The suites’ collective vision – at once divergent and coherent, empathic and objective – reminds us of all that connects us despite an increasingly discordant public conversation. Bach and his Cello Suites entered Yo-Yo Ma's life when he was four, when he learned the first measure of the ‘Prélude’ to Suite No. 1 under his father's instruction, and these works have been a through-line in his life.

His Grammy Award-winning, first complete recording of the suites, was made in his late twenties. His second, INSPIRED BY BACH, was released in his early forties and recorded alongside a multi-genre, collaborative exploration of the works. Both previous recordings of the Cello Suites, also on Sony Classical, became landmarks in the history of classical discography, as well as milestones in Ma’s musical life.

SIX EVOLUTIONS begins a new chapter in the cellist’s 58-year relationship with this music. “Now that I’m in my sixties,” Ma says, “I realize that my sense of time has changed, both in life and in music, at once expanded and compressed. Music, like all of culture, helps us to understand our environment, each other, and ourselves. Culture helps us to imagine a better future. Culture helps turn ‘them’ into ‘us.’ And these things have never been more important."

The August 2018 release of SIX EVOLUTIONS also signals the beginning of a two-year, six-continent journey in which Yo-Yo Ma will devote himself to Bach’s music, playing all six Cello Suites in single sittings in familiar and unlikely locations. Ma wants to share Bach’s music with an exceptionally large and diverse audience, in celebration of culture’s role in society. Accompanying each performance will be events that seek to put culture in action by bringing people and organizations together to address pressing social issues. Ma believes that at a time of rapid change, culture must play a central role in shaping our future.

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Tracklisting:

CD 1:

  1. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 1 in G Major, BWV 1007 - I. Prélude
  2. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 1 in G Major, BWV 1007 - II. Allemande
  3. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 1 in G Major, BWV 1007 - III. Courante
  4. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 1 in G Major, BWV 1007 - IV. Sarabande
  5. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 1 in G Major, BWV 1007 - V. Menuets I & II
  6. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 1 in G Major, BWV 1007 - VI. Gigue
  7. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 2 in D Minor, BWV 1008 - I. Prélude
  8. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 2 in D Minor, BWV 1008 - II. Allemande
  9. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 2 in D Minor, BWV 1008 - III. Courante
  10. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 2 in D Minor, BWV 1008 - IV. Sarabande
  11. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 2 in D Minor, BWV 1008 - V. Menuets I & II
  12. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 2 in D Minor, BWV 1008 - VI. Gigue
  13. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 3 in C Major, BWV 1009 - I. Prélude
  14. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 3 in C Major, BWV 1009 - II. Allemande
  15. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 3 in C Major, BWV 1009 - III. Courante
  16. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 3 in C Major, BWV 1009 - IV. Sarabande
  17. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 3 in C Major, BWV 1009 - V. Bourrées I & II
  18. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 3 in C Major, BWV 1009 - VI. Gigue

CD 2:

  1. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 4 in E-Flat Major, BWV 1010 - I. Prélude
  2. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 4 in E-Flat Major, BWV 1010 - II. Allemande
  3. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 4 in E-Flat Major, BWV 1010 - III. Courante
  4. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 4 in E-Flat Major, BWV 1010 - IV. Sarabande
  5. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 4 in E-Flat Major, BWV 1010 - V. Bourrées I & II
  6. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 4 in E-Flat Major, BWV 1010 - VI. Gigue
  7. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 5 in C Minor, BWV 1011 - I. Prélude
  8. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 5 in C Minor, BWV 1011 - II. Allemande
  9. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 5 in C Minor, BWV 1011 - III. Courante
  10. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 5 in C Minor, BWV 1011 - IV. Sarabande
  11. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 5 in C Minor, BWV 1011 - V. Gavottes I & II
  12. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 5 in C Minor, BWV 1011 - VI. Gigue
  13. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 6 in D Major, BWV 1012 - I. Prélude
  14. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 6 in D Major, BWV 1012 - II. Allemande
  15. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 6 in D Major, BWV 1012 - III. Courante
  16. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 6 in D Major, BWV 1012 - IV. Sarabande
  17. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 6 in D Major, BWV 1012 - V. Gavottes I & II
  18. Unaccompanied Cello Suite No. 6 in D Major, BWV 1012 - VI. Gigue

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A set of the Bach Cello Suites to live with.

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Bach's Six Suites for Unaccompanied Cello represent one of the pinnacles of the repertoire. Central to the concert programs of Pablo Casals, and first recorded by that great Catalan master, they have since become the mountain every cellist hopes to scale. Combining Baroque-era dance movements (Allemande, Courante, Sarabande, Gavotte, Bourée, Gigue) with introductory preludes, Bach transcends the basic form to create a transcendental musical experience. Either in concert or in the quiet of your living room, this is music to elevate and move you: escapism of the highest quality. Twice I have heard all six suites back to back live, and both times the experience was among my most memorable. Last year they were played from memory by the Dutch cellist Peter Wispelwey at Sydney's City Recital Hall: a timeless afternoon, and more gripping than either of his recordings

This is the third recording Yo Yo Ma has made of these works for Sony: firstly in his 20s, then his 40s, and now in his early 60s. This set represents a lifetime of study and involvement with the music, and it shows right from the beginning with the fluidity of his tempos in the First Suite's Prelude. Comparisons are not so much odious as irrelevant: every great musician brings a personal touch to these suites, whether it be Rostropovich's full tone and deep commitment, or Wispelwey's mercurial attack. (Wispelwey never lets you forget these are dances.) Yo Yo Ma's musicality shines through in every movement, straightforward and strong, allowing the music to reveal its own secrets. His technique is as solid as ever, without a 20-year-old's desire to prove it. Sound is perfectly balanced. In a word: authoritative.