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Sylvain Blassel plays Goldberg Variations

  • Carl
    Carl Swanson

    Someone just emailed me this youtube link and I think it's fantastic. Take a look. He's a wonderful clean musical player with a gorgeous technique. For anyone who wants to see what classic French technique looks like (what some people mistakenly call "Grandjany" technique) this is a perfect example. Notice in particular how his left hand is constantly muffling individual notes as he plays, mostly with the third and 4th fingers. He stays very close to the strings all the time, and he is almost always placing in sequence(meaning placing just one note ahead of the note he is playing). Videos like this can and should be used as teaching tools. Teachers ought to watch this with their students and analyze what he is doing.


    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DDl1vjJwBLc&feature=related

    replies to "Sylvain Blassel plays Goldberg Variations"
    • Kay
      Kay Lister

      WOW - that was beautiful! Thanks Carl.

      Kay

    • Mark
      Mark Andersen

      Hi Carl,


      What a wonderful Easter gift you've given us all by sharing that video. I'm sending this to the people I care about this Easter. The technique in this video is so beautiful and to think that he is playing this unedited is breathtaking. The beauty of it brought tears to my eyes.


      Mark Andersen

    • Carl
      Carl Swanson

      I thought you'd all enjoy that. Now, maybe we can get Kim to pick it as the video of the month!

    • Jane
      Jane Jung

      I just tried the link, and it says the video is no longer available?

    • Jane
      Jane Jung

      Oops, tried again and there it is!

    • Tonie
      Tonie Ogimachi

      Carl,

      Thank you so much for these video posts!  They are very inspiring, as well as instructive.

      Tonie

    • Janet
      Janet King

      Talk technique if you must, but more to the point, what beautiful musicianship!  thanks, Carl.

      Janet

    • Unknown
      Unknown User

      Fascinating!  How wonderful!!  Is this performance available on DVD?

    • Janet
      Janet King

      SOMEBODY PLEASE IMPORT THIS CD!!  I want a copy...

      Janet

    • Carl
      Carl Swanson

      I've been trying to get his email address so I could write him and see if the whole Goldberg recording is on DVD the way this youtube excerpt is. If any of the French readers know his email address maybe you could contact me.

    • Richard
      Richard Hagan

      Janet --

      You should be able to get it from the French Amazon.  www.amazon.fr.  I have a friend who has ordered books from them in the past without a problem.  He is ordering some albums of a young violinist that he just heard in concert while on vacation in Paris and is combining his order with an order of Tristan Le Govic's disc for me as a present.  (He hand carried back for me a copy of the Goldberg Variations.  I am looking forward to when my presents arrive.)

      Being able to shop internationally is a great thing between the internet and "plastic".  (I have bought CD's of Israeli pop singers from www.israel-music.com -- you just have to be ready to wait several weeks when you are shopping from a foreign source.)

       

    • Jérôme
      Jérôme Delmas

      Dear all harp lovers,



      I am Jérôme Delmas and as Lontano's label manager, I am really happy to read all your wonderful comments regarding Sylvain Blassel's CD.



      We did this recording last winter in Paris and the EPK you watched on Youtube was shooted in Rennes (France).



      Despite our worldwide contract with Warner Classics International, it seems to be really difficult to find Sylvain's album in the States.



      FYI, the Goldberg Variations are paired with the "Fourteen Canons on a Ground Bass".



      You of course can order it on www.amazon.fr but also directly with us.



      So don't hesitate to contact me directly at the following e.mail address : jerome.delmas@lontano.fr



      Thanks again for your support

      All the best from France

      Jérôme Delmas

      Lontano's label manager



      PS : Unfortunately no DVD available.

    • Sylvia
      Sylvia Clark

      Who cares what technique is used?  It is the end result that counts...and in this case, the end result is, indeed, fantastic.  That guy is not only extremely gifted, he's also very handsome.  (nobody said it, so I will)

      Thanks for the treat, Carl.

    • Carl
      Carl Swanson

      You're right Sylvia. In the end who cares what technique is used. I only pointed that out so that anyone not familiar with French technique could see clearly how he uses his hands. Even young students learning French technique can see here how an advanced harpist plays. The Dilling film on youtube is another very good example of French technique, as well as being wonderfully musical.

    • Maria
      Maria Myers

      Carl,

      That's a wonderful video!  Thanks for sharing it with us!

    • Nigel
      Nigel Keay

      I have it, I'll send it to you in case you are still looking for it.

    • Sylvain
      Sylvain Blassel

      Well, thank you for everything you've written !

      I don't know what should I write here, it's my first message...


      I've a new record in construction, I will say you more about it later.

      I just hope that you will like it !



      Perhaps you will be on Vancouver this summer ?

      I will be very happy to meet you around a good glass.







    • Carl
      Carl Swanson

      Well Sylvain- How nice to hear from you. I'm surprised it took so long for you to find and read these posts. You're a wonderful harpist and I look forward to the next CD. I still have to get this one, which I have not done yet.


      J'espere pouvoir vous rencontre a Paris a ma prochaine visite. J'espere que nous pouvons boire un coup ensemble. Votre connaisance de la harpe Erard m'interesse beaucoup. J'ai achete il y a 4 ans un Erard fabrique en 1892 en etat parfait(et jamais restaurait!). J'espere qu'un jour vous pouvais le voir.


      Amicalement


      Carl Swanson

    • Sylvain
      Sylvain Blassel

      but with pleasure !

      What is the number of your erard ?
      With model ?

      When are you coming in Paris ?

    • Carl
      Carl Swanson

      Sylvain-My harp at the moment is at the house of another harpist, a very good friend of mine. I don't have the number in front of me. But Francis Darigrand looked it up for me and told me that it was sold on May 6, 1892. It must have come directly to the United States and was played very little or not at all, and then spent the next 100 years in the wood trunk in storage. Because when I got it, it was clean, not as if someone had cleaned it, but as if it had not gotten dirty. The pedals had no wear at all, and the pedal slots showed no sign of use. The soundboard was tabletop flat. All of the decoration was there and in perfect condition, and there was no wear at all on the body where the hands touch the instrument. M. Darigrand told me that it was a special model, one of only 5 or 6 that I believe he said were slightly shorter than their standard model at the time. Don't hold me to that. i may have misunderstood him.


      I'm hoping to come to Paris in late March or April(or May). Not sure yet. I'll contact you in advance to see when you'll be there. In case you don't know, I spent 3 years living in Paris many many years ago, studying with Pierre Jamet.