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£15.98

Classical - Released May 25, 2018 | SWR Classic Archive

Recorded in 1957 by German Radio, before the 1963 complete recording for Archiv Produktion, this First Book of the Well-Tempered Clavier, played by Ralph Kirkpatrick, represents one of the most important landmarks on the long path towards the historically-accurate performances which we know today, and which will perhaps be seen as out-of-date tomorrow. American harpsichord player Ralph Kirkpatrick was a part of the generation that immediately followed Wanda Landowska, with whom he studied in Paris – also taking lessons from Nadia Boulanger. He gave over a good portion of his life to Domenico Scarlatti, whose works he would record, publishing a critical edition of his sonatas using a numbering system which now bears his name. We are also indebted to him for the complete recording of Johann Sebastian Bach's works for harpsichord. In the 1950s, Ralph Kirkpatrick used harpsichords from the German manufacturer Neupert, which, with their metal frame, solid construction and their fine sound, had little in common with the ancient instruments. Today, it's Kirkpatrick's technical genius which we can admire, as well as his strict observance of repetitions and concern for ornamentation, dexterity, phrasing and tempo. © François Hudry/Qobuz
£14.49

Classical - Released January 1, 1963 | Archiv Produktion

£11.49

Classical - Released January 1, 2004 | Deutsche Grammophon Classics

Since the very dawn of the compact disc era, Ralph Kirkpatrick's seminal recordings of Domenico Scarlatti have mainly been conspicuous only by their absence from the active catalog. It's hard be sure just why, as all along listeners and reviewers alike have been requesting their return. Kirkpatrick's Bach has been reissued here and there, along with some oddities, including a live, all twentieth century recital Kirkpatrick performed in 1961, released on Music and Arts. But of the Scarlatti, nothing -- how could the man who put the "K." in Scarlatti go neglected; were not his performances once considered the acme in Scarlatti played on the harpsichord? Thankfully now the wait is over, as Deutsche Grammophon's Archiv Produktion is finally making its Kirkpatrick holdings available as part of the "Blue" series in an album entitled Domenico Scarlatti: 21 Sonatas for Harpsichord. This includes the entire contents of the classic 1971 stereo album issued as Archiv 2553 072 and three 1966 recordings made for the little-known Deutsche Grammophon recital disc Ralph Kirkpatrick, Cembalo (DG 139 122). As by now an entire generation of music lovers have been raised without the benefit of Kirkpatrick's Scarlatti to listen to, one might wonder -- how well does it hold up? How does it sound, now that listeners have heard Scarlatti players such as Pierre Hantaï, Scott Ross, Eiji Hashimoto, or Mayako Sone? Excellently well, thank you -- from the first it is apparent that Kirkpatrick's approach to Scarlatti was even more flexible in tempo and approach than recalled. And yet at the same time, Kirkpatrick's interpretations still retain their authoritative and definitive qualities -- while certain things have changed about Scarlatti interpretation since Kirkpatrick made these recordings 35 years ago, not so much has refashioned that these recordings sound "old fashioned." If any thing, Kirkpatrick is a little faster and zippier than his later counterparts, which more than makes up in excitement for what it may seem to lack in emotional depth. Kirkpatrick is capable of getting an extraordinary amount of dynamic range out of a harpsichord; just listen to how explosive the fortissimo chords come across in K. 249, just to cite one example. Newer fans of Domenico Scarlatti's music are enthusiastically advised to set aside the means to acquire Domenico Scarlatti: 21 Sonatas for Harpsichord. Older ones, who may still retain a much-used copy of the Archiv LP, may welcome the opportunity to retire the vinyl at last. However, do hang onto the jacket with its wealth of information and insert -- outside of a fine appreciation of Kirkpatrick's playing written by Jed Distler, the book in this "Blue" series disc is skimpy indeed.
£7.99

Classical - Released July 1, 2016 | SWR Classic Archive

£51.49

Classical - Released January 1, 2004 | Archiv Produktion

Booklet
In the autumn of 1929, a music student at Harvard discovered the harpsichord for the first time. The instrument was gifted to the university by Arnold Dolmetsch, a harpsichord maker who worked for Boston piano makers Chickering, pioneers of the movement promoting ancient instruments in the second half of the 20th century. Kirkpatrick gained access to the instrument and, after much experimentation, gave his first public harpsichord recital in May of 1930 at Harvard Music Club. Thus began a career that spanned half a century and gained Kirkpatrick international renown as a musicologist, auteur, editor, professor and, above all, a virtuoso and musical philosopher. Time undeniably changes perspectives, and the half-century that separated these two recordings are just as important as the generation gap between Landowska and Kirkpatrick. This is just another reason to re-evaluate Ralph Kirkpatrick's recordings of Bach, and not just in his role as a transitional figure who paved the path between the Landowska school and the revolution of Leonhardt and Harnoncourt. Kirkpatrick interpreted these works with authority, integrity and an indisputable loyalty.
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£7.19

Classical - Released January 1, 1961 | BnF Collection

Hi-Res Booklet
£3.99

Classical - Released March 24, 2017 | Sinetone PCA

£11.99

Classical - Released January 1, 2016 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

£12.49

Classical - Released January 1, 2000 | Deutsche Grammophon Classics

£35.96

Classical - Released August 28, 2012 | Classique Perfecto

£7.99

Classical - Released January 1, 2000 | Maestoso

£7.99

Classical - Released January 1, 2000 | Maestoso

£7.99

Classical - Released March 24, 2017 | Sinetone PCA

£7.99

Classical - Released March 24, 2017 | Sinetone PCA

£7.99

Classical - Released March 24, 2017 | Sinetone PCA

£7.99

Classical - Released March 24, 2017 | Sinetone PCA

£4.79

Classical - Released March 24, 2017 | Sinetone PCA