The Art of the Curved Bow
Michael Bach, cello
Johann Sebastian BACH
Cello Suite in C Major,
No. 3, BWV 1009
Mit Diesen Händen (1992)
Mechthild Seitz mezzo-soprano
written for Michael Bach
Fünf Inventionen (1987)
A major release for lovers of the music of J.S. Bach as well as fans of New Music. The CURVED BOW, or BACH Bow, gives string-players the unique ability to play up to all four strings simultaneously--an impossibility with today's bow. Some believe that the curved bow was used during Bach's time, in the 20th century it was championed by the likes of Albert Schweitzer. It is a device with incredible potential for new and old repertoire, shedding new musical light on the works in which it is employed.
Michael Bach, a German cellist now living in France, has been playing with the curved bow for many years, continually developing his technique and the design of the bow itself. His mastery of the curved-bow brought him to the attention of John Cage, who worked with Bach on some late works utilizing the special techniques of the curved bow (to be featured on future Mode releases), and many other contemporary composers also intrigued by the possibilities of this style.
This is the first in a series by Michael Bach on Mode Records. Each Art of the Curved Bow release will feature one of Bach's Cello Suites performed to tremendous effect and sonority with the curved-bow, with contemporary couplings.
Here Michael Bach performs Bach's Cello Suite in C major along with two works by Dieter Schnebel, an innovative composer of Europe's post-war generation. Schnebel's Mit Diesen Händen is a powerful work for cello and mezzo-soprano to a harrowing poem of Heinrich Böll.
Michael Bach is also a visual artist--the CD comes with a full-sized poster of his art to Böll's poem,
liner notes by Schnebel and an essay on the curved bow by James Pritchett.
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