Amy Yang - Resonance - J S Bach, Schumann and Shaw. © 2019 MSR Classics

CD Spotlight

Something of a Marvel

LUCAS BALL listens to
J S Bach, Caroline Shaw and Robert Schumann,
played by Amy Yang

'... Yang's delivery can be wild and exciting and even irritable but also depressing, lonely and longing.'


This release is something of a marvel. With her rendering of Davidsbündlertänze, Amy Yang takes us to a world that Robert Schumann was very much involved in. With each movement, these states of mind conflict with one another. We experience 'Florestan' and 'Eusebius' or even both within the same movement.

Listen — Robert Schumann: Wild und lustig (Davidsbündlertänze)
(track 21, 0:00-0:42) © 2019 Amy Yang :

Listen — Robert Schumann: Wie aus der Ferne (Davidsbündlertänze)
(track 25, 3:27-4:23) © 2019 Amy Yang :

To match Schumann's states of mind, Yang's delivery can be wild and exciting and even irritable but also depressing, lonely and longing. We also experience his love for Clara Wieck. (One commentator says that it is based on Wieck's Mazurka, Op 6, No 5 and yes, one can see the resemblance when looking at the score with some of the same sentiments that come with Wieck's work.)

Listen — Robert Schumann: Lebhaft (Davidsbündlertänze)
(track 9, 0:00-0:32) © 2019 Amy Yang :

Amy Yang begins this recital with a rendition of Bach's Partita No 4 in D major, and this too takes us to the various contrasts that Bach has to offer. This time, the movements are, of course, Baroque dances - Allemande, Courante, Sarabande, Gigue - together with other movements - Ouvertüre, Aria, Menuet - and Yang deftly takes us on an exploration of Bach's various states of mind.

Listen — J S Bach: Ouvertüre (Partita No 4 in D)
(track 1, 0:00-0:56) © 2019 Amy Yang :

Listen — J S Bach: Allemande (Partita No 4 in D)
(track 2, 0:00-1:00) © 2019 Amy Yang :

The one living composer on the CD is the American Caroline Shaw (only born in 1982) and this greatly pays homage to Clara Wieck in Chopin's Mazurka Op 17, No 4. Again the resemblance is striking and it fits in with the overall ethos of the other items on the programme.

Listen — Caroline Shaw: Gustave de Gray
(track 8, 11:24-12:17) © 2019 Amy Yang :

Caroline Shaw seemingly does not feel the need to be at all avant-garde - her work Gustave Le Gray (2012) is clearly tonal and adds to the character of what comes before with the Bach Partita and to what comes after with the Schumann Davidsbündlertänze.

It is not difficult to see why the CD is called Resonance.

Copyright © 4 April 2020 Lucas Ball,
Worcestershire UK







 << Home              Next review >>



All material © 1998-2020 Classical Music Daily,
various authors and photographers.
All rights of the original copyright holders
are reserved, and are credited where known.
Formerly known as Music & Vision
The world's first daily classical music magazine
Founding Editor: Basil Ramsey (1929-2018);
Editor: Keith Bramich