Fantasien, Sivan MagenFantasien
Sivan Magen, harp; Linn Records, 2014.
4.75 harps

As I write this, celebrations are underway for the 300th birthday of the most famous son of the Bach dynasty, Carl Philip Emmanuel. He is a composer whose quirky inventiveness and heart-on-the-sleeve emotion garnered him adulation from the likes of Mozart, “He is the father, we, the children.” As the first track on Sivan Magen’s marvelous new disc Fantasien, C.P.E. Bachushers us into the gauzy dreamlike nature of the world in between written and improvised notes. Sivan plays with absolute freedom and expression, his lush but gentle tone opening a door to a place out of time. The transcription from keyboard to harp by the performer is natural and leaves no clumsy footprints of the former self, as if the piece were initially composed for harp.

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About Author

Alison Young is a classical music host and producer at Minnesota Public Radio/American Public Media. She left a successful career as a flutist a decade ago after she developed a neurological disorder, but before then enjoyed many years traveling the world giving recitals, performing concertos, playing with some of the finest orchestras, and recording her own discs. Nowadays, Young spins discs and is always on the lookout for the next best thing. You can contact her at

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