Krebs - Complete Harpsichord Music | Brilliant Classics 95723

Krebs - Complete Harpsichord Music


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Label: Brilliant Classics

Cat No: 95723

Format: CD

Number of Discs: 6

Genre: Instrumental

Release Date: 17th September 2021



The most comprehensive single-volume collection of keyboard music by one of Bach’s most talented pupils, recorded by an Italian early-music specialist with a distinguished catalogue of 17th-century repertoire.

The son of a Weimar-based organist, Johann Krebs entered the Thomasschule in Leipzig under the tutelage of Capellmeister Bach at the age of 12 in 1726. There he remained for the best part of a decade, and a glowing testimonial from Bach commended his talents on the clavier, violin and lute, as well as in composition. Krebs never attained the Leipzig post which his instrumental talents deserved, but he served as an organist in several churches south of Leipzig through the course of a long and distinguished professional life which reached fruition as organist at the court of Prince Friedrich of Gotha-Altenburg from 1755 onwards.

The inveterate traveller and commentator Charles Burney reported that ‘M. Krebs of Altenburg, scholar of Sebastian Bach, has been much admired for his full and masterly manner of playing the organ.’ The style of Krebs’s own music reflects the transitional period in which he lived. The hand of the master lightly guides the cosmopolitan elegance of the three partitas on CD1 of this collection. Krebs compiled a Clavier-Übung (Keyboard Practice) of his own in 1744, from which Michele Benuzzi performs a C major suite and, six lively Italianate sonatas.

A volume of six suites from 1746 shows the influence of the galant style which was coming into fashion at the time, embodied by the output of Bach’s most accomplished son, Carl Philipp Emanuel. Several more suites here are sophisticated examples of Krebs’s mastery in the ‘French and Italian taste’ as well as demonstrating the fluency of his keyboard writing and the craftsmanship of his counterpoint.

This important collection joins several other albums of little-known keyboard music from the period, recorded for Brilliant Classics by Michele Benuzzi. A student of Ottavio Dantone, he has performed the complete sonatas of Scarlatti and given recitals at major festivals in Europe and Asia.

Praise for Michele Benuzzi on Brilliant Classics:

‘Michele Benuzzi covers himself in glory with this release. He is the ideal interpreter to bring this music to light: highly sensitive to the gesture and emotion of the music, yet capable of carrying the musical narrative forward in telling fashion.’ - Fanfare (Hässler, 94293)

‘Benuzzi’s style is perfectly matched to Nichelmann’s… The style is never labored, but always concentrated and careful.’ - Fanfare (Nichelmann, 94809)

‘Michele Benuzzi’s playing is didactic and powerful, quite virile and forceful.' - Fanfare (Gallés, 95228)

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