|Comments:||George Murnu said:|
Constantin Silvestri is a conductor more readily associated with the romantic and post-romantic repertoire rather than with the music of Baroque and particularly Bach. Yet he did make quite a few recordings of Baroque music - besides Bach there's some Handel and Corelli, all longing for re-issue - and he conducted this music quite regularly at least while still in Romania; less so in his years in Bournemouth. So how do these recordings measure up with his work in repertoire that he's better known for ( i.e. Tchaikovsky, Elgar, Enescu )? Well, I will put it this way: the present Bach recording is one of my favorite Silvestri recordings; indeed, one of my favorite recordings of the work. Though it was recorded in the 1950s, Silvestri is quite aware of the peculiarities of Bach's music and he uses a smaller size orchestra and faster tempi than it was the norm at that time. This way he achieves clarity of texture; yet the strings still have a wonderful warm sound that is never beefy. His phrasing is crisp and robust in the fast movements, expansive but never dragging in the slow ones, and the contribution of the unnamed flute soloist is good. Silvestri is attentive to details and every note has a meaning for him. Altogether one of this underrated conductor's best recordings.