Despite he passed away in mid-January, I decided to initiate this new topic as a tribute to the honour of one of the greatest musician of the past and current century (he was born in 1928), the first harpsichordist par excellence, a pioneer of the "revolution in Baroque", a man of an immense career without any gloss but also without any compromise. His recordings have been icons of the vast period of early to the very late Baroque. His concerts unique, in every way. And yet, how many of us will really remember him with fondness and will cherish the memory of his recordings and achievements?
His dedication to his Art was so strong that it is interesting to state some of his credo in his own verbatim:
- No clapping in the church! If we clap after "Donna nobis pacem" of the great Mass in b minor by Bach (along with the necessary bows and flowers...), it means we have not understood anything of what we have just listened to.
- A good harpsichordist is the one who can make the listener to forget the harpsichord.
- I became a musician, so that I may not resort to speak. By playing, I express all I can say with the music I perform. If it works, all the words cannot do anything. If it doesn't, all the words cannot serve any purpose.
- I do not like the word "interpretation". I simply serve the music; I don't interpret!
- When I play, I don't think. I have already done that before the actual playing.
In the course of possible exchanges, I'll be more than happy to present some of his most memorable recordings along with further information on his life, work and career. To start with, he and his long-standing friend and co-artist, more celebrated Nikolaus Harnoncourt, have created the first and arguably the most important and greatest achievement in the recording history, the complete Cantatas by Bach, on Teldec. The LP release was the most valuable and significant one, since it included the scores of each Cantata!