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Goldberg opinion

Hello all!

I have over some years found that peoples opinions of Gould's two studio
Goldbergs very often tend to diverge. To put it bluntly, either you like
the 1955 and "dismiss" the 1981 version or the opposite standpoint is
appicable (please forgive me for this over-simplification; most
commentators do of course develope their arguments in a more refined

Otto Friedrich opted for the 1955 whereas Jim Aikin in his article in
"Keyboard" 1983 held the opposite opinion. I am personally a firm 1981
believer, which doesn't say I cannot appreciate the almost unstoppable
flow of energy of the earlier rendition. The trascendental, if such a
term is permissable, qualities of the 1981 recording makes it in my mind
perhaps the best piano recording ever.

What do the rest of F_Minor think of these two cornerstones of the
Gouldian discography?

My second question concerns Gould's performances of the three fugues of
from "The Art of Fugue" in the "Glenn Gould Plays Bach" series. Along
side the 1981 Goldberg and a few others recordings, I find these
interpretations the high points of Gould's career. This is a view not
shared by everyone. Let me quote Jens Hagestedt in his book "Wie spielt
Glenn Gould". On page 12 he writes (freely translated): "Unworthy is
also the meditative, restrained profunditiy, that Gould achieves in the
last unfinnished contrapunctus of the "The Art of fugue"...".

To make a long story short: 1. Do any of you have opinions concerning
the 1955 and 1981 "Goldberg variations"?

2. Do any of you have opinions concerning the three fugues from "The Art
of Fugue" as showed in the "Glenn Gould Plays Bach" series?