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Well-Tempered Clavier Book II, BWV 870-893
General Discussions - Part 1

WTC 2 - Discography, facts and questions

Aryeh Oron wrote (February 5, 2007):
Following previous discographies of Bach's keyboard works (Inventions & Sinfonias BWV 772-801, Duets BWV 802-805, English Suites BWV 806-811, French Suites BWV 812-817, Neglected Suites BWV 818-824, Partitas BWV 825-830, French Overture BWV 831, Various Keyboard Works 832-845, WTC 1 BWV 846-869, Goldberg Variations BWV 988), I have added now a comprehensive discography of the Well-Tempered Clavier Book II, BWV 870-893 (WTC 2).

As previously, I have used every possible source I could find, including web-catalogues, web-stores, web-magazines, artists' websites, labels' websites and other websites, as well as various printed catalogues and my personal collection. The only web discography of WTC 2 I found was at the University of Albany and it is actually only a list with many items missing. I believe that this is the first time such an attempt to present a comprehensive discography of WTC 2 is made, at least on the web.

You can find the list of recordings of the WTC 2 split into several pages, a page for a decade, through the main page of BWV 870-893 at the BCW: http://www.bach-cantatas.com/NVD/BWV870-893.htm

All in all, 83 complete (or near complete) recordings of WTC 2 are listed. As in previous discographies in the BCW, each recording is listed only once. All the issues of each recording are presented together. If a performer has recorded WTC 2 more than once, the info includes also the recording number.

This page above includes also internal links to reviews and to other websites. I have not yet compiled the discussions of WTC (some hundreds messages of this work in my archive). It would take some time, and there are other projects of higher priority.

If you are aware of a recording of WTC 2 not listed in the discography, or if you find an error or missing information, please inform me, either through the BRML or to my personal e-mail address.

Some interesting facts (and questions):

A. The youngest player to record the complete WTC 2 is the 10 years old Albert Wong. See: http://www.bach-cantatas.com/NVD/BWV870-893-Rec7.htm [74]
I have not heard this recording. Have any of you? He should be 17 today. I wonder how his career has developed since.

B. Several players have recorded WTC 2 twice, most of them pianists: Rosalyn Tureck (1952-1953, 1976), Robert Riefling (Mid 1950's, 1985), Helmut Walcha (1961, 1974), Joao Carlos Martins (1964, 1983), Zuzana Ruzickova (1971, 1995), Tatiana Nikolayeva (1973, 1984), Takahiro Sonoda (1973, 1992), Angela Hewitt (1998-1990, 2000 - 2nd part on DVD).
I heard 2 recordings only by Hewitt, who is in a class of her own in relation to the other 3 pianists who took part in the DVD. Have any of you heard 2 recordings by the same player?

C. There are several recordings of WTC 2 on organ: Louis Thiry (1975), Daniel Chorzempa (1994 - part), Bernard Lagacé (1996), John Wells (1998 & 2002), Christoph Bossert (1999), Robert Levin (2000 - part), Frédéric Desenclos (2001).
Except of Chorzempa's, which is a mixed bag, I have not heard any of these recordings. Have you?

D. Edwin Fischer was the first to record WTC 2 (1933-1934). In the 15 something years following this historic recording, no other player dared to record it. Do you think that this recording should hold its place at the top in comparison with the other 82 renditions that have been recorded since?

E. What are your favourite recordings of WTC 2 on piano and on harpsichord?

 

BCW: WTC 1 BWV 846-869 & WTC 2 BWV 870-893 - Revised & Updated Discographies

Aryeh Oron wrote (July 10, 2011):
The discography pages of both Books of Well-Tempered Clavier BWV 846-893 on the BCW have been revised & updated:
WTC 1 (137 recordings): http://www.bach-cantatas.com/NVD/BWV846-869.htm
WTC 2 (111 recordings): http://www.bach-cantatas.com/NVD/BWV870-893.htm
The two discographies are arranged chronologically by recording date, a page per a decade, and include all known complete (or near complete) recordings of either Book.
If you have any correction, addition or completion of missing details, please inform me.

 

BCW: WTC Discographies

Aryeh Oron wrote (June 1, 2013):
The discography pages of both Books of Well-Tempered-Clavier (WTC) on the BCW have been updated. The discographies are arranged chronologically by recording date, a page per a decade. All the discography pages are inter-linked. You can start, for example, at the last decade page (2010-2019) and go backward to pages of previous decades.
Book 1 BWV 846-869 (163 complete recordings): http://bach-cantatas.com/NVD/BWV846-869-Rec8.htm
Book II BWV 870-893 (124 complete recordings): http://bach-cantatas.com/NVD/BWV870-893-Rec8.htm
If you have any correction, addition or completion of missing details, please inform me.

Phil [BRML] wrote (June 5, 2013):
[To Aryeh Oron] Thanks for doing this and calling our attention to it. I had not realized there was a Keith Jarrett recording, now winging its way to me courtesy of Amazon.

 
 

Well Tempered Clavier Book I, BWV 846-869: Details
Recordings:
1900-1949 | 1950-1959 | 1960-1969 | 1970-1979 | 1980-1989 | 1990-1999 | 2000-2009 | 2010-2019
Comparative Review:
Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6
Reviews of Individual Recordings:
WTC I - D. Barenboim [D. Satz] | WTC I - D. Barenboim [P. Bright] | WTC I - L. Beausejouir & A. Vieru | WTC I - T. Fellner | WTC I - E. Fischer | WTC I - M. Horszowski | WTC I - C. Jaccottet | WTC I - R. Kirkpatrick | WTC I - T. Koopman | WTC I - W. Landowska | WTC I - R. Levin | WTC I - O. Mustonen | WTC I - E. Parmentier | WTC I - S. Richter | WTC I - S. Schepkin
General Discussions:
Part 1
Discussions of Individual Recordings:
WTC I - T. Fellner
Well Tempered Clavier Book II, BWV 870-893: Details
Recordings:
1900-1949 | 1950-1959 | 1960-1969 | 1970-1979 | 1980-1989 | 1990-1999 | 2000-2009 | 2010-2019
Comparative Review:
Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7 | Part 8 | Part 9
Reviews of Individual Recordings:
WTC II - D. Barenboim [P. Bright] | WTC II - G. Cooper | WTC II - F. Gulda | WTC II - A. Hewitt | WTC II - R. Kirkpatrick | WTC II - J. Middleton
General Discussions:
Part 1
Well Tempered Clavier Books I&II, BWV 846-893:
Reviews of Individual Recordings:
WTC I&II - B.v. Asperen, S. Ross & G. Wilson | WTC I&II - E. Crochet | WTC I&II - O. Dantone | WTC I&II - S. Feinberg | WTC I&II - A. Hewitt | WTC II&II - T. Nikolayeva | WTC II&II - L. Thiry [N. Halliday] | WTC I&II - Z. Ruzickova

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Last update: June 21, 2013 07:15:10