Tabea Zimmerman - Solo

A magnificent recital played with a beautiful tone and lively musical intelligence

Record and Artist Details

Composer or Director: (Johann Baptist Joseph) Max(imilian) Reger, Johann Sebastian Bach



Label: Myrios

Media Format: Hybrid SACD

Media Runtime: 64



Catalogue Number: MYR003


Composition Artist Credit
(3) Suites (Johann Baptist Joseph) Max(imilian) Reger, Composer
(Johann Baptist Joseph) Max(imilian) Reger, Composer
Tabea Zimmermann, Viola
(6) Suites (Sonatas) for Cello, Movement: No. 1 in G, BWV1007 Johann Sebastian Bach, Composer
Johann Sebastian Bach, Composer
Tabea Zimmermann, Viola
(6) Suites (Sonatas) for Cello, Movement: No. 2 in D minor, BWV1008 Johann Sebastian Bach, Composer
Johann Sebastian Bach, Composer
Tabea Zimmermann, Viola
Despite the scarcity of repertoire for solo viola, Reger’s three suites have never achieved widespread circulation. It’s not the most original, distinctive music, perhaps, yet it’s beautifully conceived for the instrument, and the balance between neo-Baroque features and a more up-to-date étude style is cleverly maintained. And in Tabea Zimmermann the suites have an interpreter able to bring out every facet of the music, from the introspective, melancholy opening movement of the First Suite to the spirit and verve of the First and Third Suites’ finales.

Her beautiful tone, constantly varied, and lively musical intelligence are, of course, ideal assets in Bach as well as Reger. Transposed up an octave, Bach’s cello-writing is equally apt for viola, and though the viola can’t match the dark sonority of the cello in the Prelude and Sarabande of the Second Suite, there are compensations. The G major Suite’s Prelude may lack the gravitas a cellist can bring to it, but Zimmermann imparts an airy quality that’s just as appealing. And her vivacious accounts of the concluding Gigues of both suites entirely banish the lugubrious impression the larger instrument can sometimes leave.

Zimmermann has an excellent appreciation of Baroque style, but her modern equipment can lead to the creation of general rather than particular effects – the spiccato bowing in BWV1008’s Corrente results in the loss of details of phrasing; a similar smoothing of detail comes as a result of the very quiet repeats in the corresponding movement of BWV1007. It’s a magnificent recital, however, with Zimmermann proving a true fairy godmother to the viola’s Cinderella image.

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