Photo : Duo Mélisande © Nicolas Djavanshir
Goldberg Variations
Duo Mélisande
(France)
Bach on two classical guitars
The brilliant Sébastien Llinares and Nicolas Lestoquoy take on an unprecedented transcription with a guitar duet recreation of a J.S. Bach baroque masterpiece for the harpsichord. An original virtuoso chamber music performance with great depth, complementarity and nuance.

Sébastien Llinares from Toulouse and Nicolas Lestoquoy from Lille met at the prestigious Ecole Normale de Musique de Paris. These two young and brilliant guitarists formed the Duo Mélisande and chose to take on an unprecedented transcription for a guitar duet, adapted from J.S. Bach’s famous masterpiece the Goldberg Variations, initially written for the harpsichord. The result is an original virtuoso chamber music performance with great depth, complementarity and nuance. This thrilling recreation is a reminder of the physical similarity between the plucked strings of the harpsichord and those of the classical guitar.

The passion and recklessness of youth was no doubt needed to take on this unprecedented transcription of one of the masterpieces of a musical genius of the western world.

Through Goldberg Variations for the harpsichord (988 BWV, 1740), the most prominent member of the Bach family laid a new cornerstone within this great work, now recognised as the epitome of baroque musical tradition. With transcriptions for the piano, organ, harp, string orchestra, consort of viols or string trios, this virtuoso piece for keyboard with 32 variations (studies) only found its place in history with the fiery interpretations by Glenn Gould in 1955.

Drawing inspiration from American musicologist Rosalyn Tureck, who stated that “Bach’s music is essentially abstract and not dependent on specific instrumental sonorities,” Sébastien Llinares and Nicolas Lestoquoy played on the similarity between the plucked strings of the harpsichord and those of the guitar to use a contemporary transcription by Italian guitarist and conductor Benedetto Montebello. Duo Mélisande use modern guitars by Australian Luthier Caldersmith to go beyond the rich harmonious sounds and complexity of the contrapuntal score. Their complementarity, fervour, unified sound and nuanced style “add their own twist and contribution to the indestructible edifice” of the Goldberg Variations.

BIOGRAPHY

Sébastien Llinares (born in 1978) and Nicolas Lestoquoy (born in 1982) both graduated from the prestigious Ecole Normale de Musique de Paris, where they studied under masters Rafael Andia and Alberto Ponce respectively. Their performance is marked by the touch of great guitar tradition and special attention to musicological accuracy. For this Goldberg Variations project, they chose to play modern guitars by Australian Luthier Caldersmith. The power and extensive sound range of these instruments mean they are suited to any concert hall and can reach large audiences. The musicians use Benedetto Montebello’s transcription (published by Editions Chanterelle), following some modifications, mainly concerning arrangements and voice distribution. Their Goldberg Variations CD came out in 2014 under the Paraty label. Sébastien has also produced Soliloque, which focuses on French 20th century music and Œuvres pour Guitare Solo, covering pieces by Joaquin Turina (Harmonia Mundi). Nicolas has produced three albums with his ensemble Swingin’ Partout, and released Manuel de Falla, Suite Populaire Espagnole and Presencias with Taiwanese violinist Li-Kung Kuo. He teaches guitar at the Conservatoire à Rayonnement Régional de Douai.

DISTRIBUTION

Sébastien Llinares and Nicolas Lestoquoy : guitar.
Goldberg Variations, BWV 988 by Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750).
Transcription for a guitar duet by Benedetto Montebello.

Thursday 05 July 2018
21:00 > 22:00
Chapelle du Conservatoire, Rue Hoche, Rennes
1h
5€ / 2€ Sortir!
Métro : Sainte-Anne / Bus : C1-C5-9-12-36-51-70-71 / Arrêt de Bus : Sainte-Anne . Place Hoche / Vélo : Place Hoche
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Chapelle du Conservatoire, Rue Hoche, Rennes
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