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Musical World

Jaap ter Linden

  • Cellist
  • Conductor


Jaap ter Linden press reviews

Ter Linden’s rubatos were breathtaking: this was playing of great freedom and, where appropriate, passion. [...] the Suites were animated by a deep understanding of the niceties of baroque-era dance... each moment was filled with a wealth of detail that never obscured the flow of the music. Other cellists can and do place more overt emphasis on the suites considerable technical fireworks; ter Linden’s approach is intimate, yet confident. The evening left the indelible impression that, despite a lifetime of familiarity with the works, ter Linden remains astonished by Bach’s spectacular blend of intellect and audacity. — Vancouver Sun, August 2006

Refined ensemble playing and musical swing made for a big success with the audience. —Tiroler Tageszeitung, Aug 2004

Ter Linden inspsired in his ‘Bach-Suites’ as contemplative interpreter of a music sounding like prayers in the Spanish Hall of Ambras. —Kurier Tirol, Aug 2004

Elegance, Style and Respect for Bach
Ter Linden plays the three Suites for Violoncello in their great splendour, but without treating them with the depressiveness that is sometimes fashionable. He develops an image, without leaving the metrum, in order to enrich the structure, not to disturb it. The melody lines are not broken by the chords and double stoppings, but rather given an extra dimension. [...] Jaap ter Linden, who recorded all Suites for HMU, has a clear, knowing connection with Bach. His elegance and tastefull stylishness, his enrichening of depth of the music through his stylish sovereignty, musicality, respect and restrained pleasure of experimentation provide an immediate experience of this special music. —Tiroler Tageszeitung, Aug 2004

One can hear the deep intimacy of the artist with Bach’s rethorical music, the phrasing and articulation, the checked liberty in changing the tempi.—Die Presse, Aug 2004

Jaap Ter Linden speaks through his cello with his own richly characterful voice: his playing is infused with lyricism and wit; his awareness of his instrument's constantly changing role within the music and his attention to detail are sheer delight. — Gramophone May 2002 (A London Concert, Naim CD037)

[It] provided an opportunity for the audience to savour the broad musical qualities of Jaap ter Linden’s playing, and the deep understanding of the essential qualities of the baroque style which enables him to illuminate the music. [...] Indeed, having a baroque specialist of this quality and experience playing with them obviously lifted the spirits of [the Australian group Salut! Baroque] ... one of the highlights of this year’s event. — Canberra Journal, May 2000
Jaap ter Linden’s recording of the Bach Suites is right on target. The great Dutch instrumentalist has always had a knack for uniting historical interpretation with a common sense approach. [...] His interpretation lacks any bit of pedantry and doesn’t make style an end itself, but a means to make Bach’s music acquire its true dimension. Without a doubt, Ter Linden is well aware of the tradition of the great modern cellists, from which there is a lot to be learned. It is a pleasure to listen to this Bach, that, authentic as it is, is completely uninhibited. This is a profound, transcendent Bach, but at the same time clear, intelligent and moving, that knows how to sing withoug haste, to give weight to where it is needed and doesn’t seek to make easy which is intricate, which doesn’t confuse depth with romanticism, nor baroque with superficiality. —ABC de la Música

Any recording of this wonderful music has to contend with some pretty distinguished competition; this one can certainly enter the ring with pride. —Gramophone, October 1997

A magnificent achievement, challenging Bijlsma’s definitive 1979 recording.— BBC Music Magazine, August 1997

Not since Anner Bijlsma has another Cellist wrought comparable magic, bringing that rare amalgam of fantasy and stylistic probity to this music. —Classic CD