Simone Dinnerstein: Listening to Bach's Goldberg Variations is like looking up at all the stars in the night sky
American documentary filmmaker Michael Lawrence sent me a note this morning, after reading my interview with Simone Dinnerstein, who is in Toronto tomorrow to play Bach's Goldberg Variations at Koerner Hall. He wanted to fill me in on the next steps in a monumental, ongoing labour of love and obsession he calls the Bach Project.
Lawrence's note reminded me of a beautiful segment in the project that features Dinnerstein. She plays the Aria (followed by a short clip of a variation), while talking about Bach and the Goldbergs and her feelings about the music.
Her description of listening to Bach being like looking at all the stars in a clear night sky is particularly apt. Even if you have no idea what it all means, you can't help but admire the view. What Dinnerstein doen't add, but implies, I'm sure, is if you do eventually begin to figure out what it means, and discern the patterns and interrelationships between the notes/stars, the view only becomes more beautiful.
I've followed Lawrence's Goldberg clip with the promotional video from Dinnerstein's new Bach album for Sony Classical, which gets released in a few weeks, where she says more about what Bach means to her, and the importance of capturing multi-dimensionality in music. (The piano she is playing in the video is the Hamburg Steinway she fell in love with while recording in Berlin. It was delivered to her home in Brooklyn a couple of weeks ago.)