In this Festival we have heard the Goldbergs played on harpsichord, piano and string trio. This new transcription by François Meïmoun is yet another way to listen to this masterpiece. The spirit of Bach must have been watching over our Festival this year for the Ardeo Quartet could offer this concert, Johannes Pramsohler and Philippe Grisvard particularly wanted to play the sonatas for harpsichord and violin, Cédric Pescia was keen to play the French Suites, Jonian Kadesha could offer a Hommage à J.S.B.
while Jadran Duncumb on lute joins Johannes Pramsohler for an Encounter with Bach.
In this version of the Goldberg Variations, François Meïmoun notes sadly that a transcription is both homage and betrayal, in this case surely more homage than betrayal. His redistribution of the material enables us to hear new lines that are normally hidden in the uniform sound of the harpsichord or piano. The beauty of this transcription does indeed lie in hearing this familiar masterpiece as though it was a strange new work for string quartet full of wonderful uplifting dances.