Thibaut Garcia: Bach Inspirations
The 24-year-old Franco-Spanish classical guitarist Thibaut Garcia’s third recording – his second for Erato – revisits the music of Bach and Latin America. But where the first, ‘Demain dès l’aube’, included Bach’s Sixth Partita, BWV830, and the second, ‘Leyendas’, Piazzolla’s Estaciones Porteñas, ‘Bach Inspirations’, as its title suggests, focuses on Bach’s influence on subsequent composers, not just from Latin America but also from Poland and the Balkans.
In his flowing, pellucid interpretations Garcia himself seems to be inspired by Bach’s name, and throughout much of the programme there’s a compelling tension between the rippling enunciation of lighter paragraphs and the precipitous propulsion of more dramatic passages. This is most obvious in Garcia’s thrilling, magisterial performance of Bach’s D minor Chaconne, where he also relishes the ringing campanella effects while injecting a mesmeric fluidity into the rapid scale and arpeggio passages that throw into sharper relief the cleanly etched architecture of the sunlit major section. But it is also there from the beginning, with Barrios’s melancholy La catedral, and later, in the less often-heard Inventions of Alexandre Tansman and Dušan Bogdanović’s superb Suite brève.
An expressive, sweet-toned Elsa Dreisig joins Garcia for the Bach/Gounod Ave Maria and the aria from Villa-Lobos’s Bachianas Brasileiras No 5, while the latter’s Bachian Prelude No 3 looks past the Bogdanović to the most sheerly beautiful takes on Bach’s ‘Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme’ and ‘Jesus bleibet meine Freude’ I’ve heard from any guitarist to date: clear, relaxed and full of feeling.