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Cello Suites

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Cello Suites

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Editorial Reviews

After her acclaimed PENTATONE debut with Transfigured Night, Alisa Weilerstein returns with a complete recording of Bachs Cello Suites. These pieces present the highest mountain to climb for any cellist, and one of the most transcendent and rewarding experiences for listeners alike. With his suites, Bach crafted essentially without direct precedent a body of solo cello music that forever defined the genre and brought the Baroque cello on par with its more popular cousin, the viola da gamba. Since Pablo Casals put them in the limelight again after 150 years of relative oblivion, Bachs suites have become the alpha and omega for generations of cellists. To Weilerstein, the joy of this music vibrant, contemporary, unquestionably alive is the joy of discovery. Having heard and studied these pieces for years, she now entrusts her interpretation to the listener. Since signing an exclusive contract PENTATONE, Alisa Weilerstein has released Transfigured Night (2018), and featured on Inon Barnatans Beethoven Piano Concertos Part 1 as well as Old Souls, an album with music for flute and strings (both released in 2019).


From the manufacturer

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From The Artist:

"The Bach cello suites present the player with infinite possibilities. Each note, each phrase, carries abundant varieties of expression and musical nuance. The suites are too rich with ideas, too full of subtleties, and too dense with the burden of history for any particular interpretation to be exhaustive, any particular choice definitive. All great pieces of music carry with them this sense of contradiction — they must be played, yet they can’t be played. Every expressive gesture both realizes and limits the intentions of the composer."

"With their delicacy and nakedness, their strength and restraint, the cello suites present a unique and humbling challenge. After many years telling family, friends, and myself that I would attempt a recording only when I was much older, I decided that what had seemed like prudence was, in fact, a misunderstanding of the suites’ nature. The intrinsic impossibility of this music is the very source of its freedom."

"I have been living with these suites since further back than memory can reach, and I have grown with them throughout my life with the cello. Great music is a reflection of life as it is lived, and this recording is a reflection of myself, in 2019, at 37 years old, steeped in and still discovering Bach’s unparalleled accomplishment. I recorded this album in my current home, Berlin, where I could have breakfast with my husband and daughter before heading out for a day at the studio, working through the material with my wonderful producer Friedemann Engelbrecht and the team at Teldex, and with the tremendous support of my friends at PENTATONE. The joy of this music — vibrant, contemporary, unquestionably alive — is the joy of discovery. I invite you to join me on this infinitely inspiring adventure."

– Alisa Weilerstein

Cello Suites