The Free-Reed Review
Critiques of Compact Discs, Books and Music Scores

CD Review: Bogdan Precz


Bogdan Precz, accordion


J.S. Bach: Prelude and Fugue in Am, BWV 543
M. Kalatchewski: Nocturne
H. Wieniawski: Scherzo - Tarantella
B. Precz: 3-3-2
B. Precz: Sonata

B. Precz: Fantasia Polacca

Total Time: 50:14
Released in 1992

Order from: Maria Gurbindo
Azalea, 69
28100 - El Soto (Alcobendas)

Review by Henry Doktorski:

Bogdan Precz is an exceptional young Polish accordionist; born in 1960 in Myslowice (Silesia, Poland) he studied accordion at the music conservatory of Katowice, where he later taught on the faculty as professor of the instrument (1984). Three years later, he settled in Madrid, where he lives today.

Precz is a mature performer and is equally at home in solo recitals as in chamber concerts. He has performed in Poland, Cuba, Venezuela, Portugal, Spain, Andorra, France, Italy and Switzerland. In addition to classical music, he has a fondness for blues, jazz and rock music. He has recorded with the Silesian Philharmonic Orchestra, the Spanish National Orchestra's string quartet and with the rock group "Sai Channel."

He is featured as soloist on two CDs, "Fusion" in duet with concert harmonica player Zygmunt Zgraja (which is unfortunately out of print) and "For Daniel" with the Bogdan Precz Acco-Lab (bass guitar, drums, electric guitar, trombone and piano) which includes seven pieces by Chick Corea.

"Acordeon" begins with the well-known Bach "Prelude and Fugue in A minor." Although the author, as a rule, is not fond of accordion transcriptions of works originally written for pipe organ (an accordion with bass reeds even several inches long cannot compete with the deepness of sound of a 32 foot-long organ pedal pipe!) he admits that this work transcribes remarkably well for the chromatic five-row button accordion.

Indeed, this prelude and fugue is a veritable impossibility to perform on any other accordion. The author - who plays piano accordion - never ceases to be amazed by the right hand gymnastic feats which are possible on the chromatic button accordion. Bach wrote his organ music in three staves, one for five fingers of the right hand, the second for five fingers of the left hand, and the third for the two heels and two toes of the feet; imagine trying to play all that with only two hands!

Yet Bogdan Precz not only performs the piece with technical aplomb, but with musical sensitivity. During the most difficult passages in the piece he manages to play three contrapuntal lines in the right hand with distinctness and clarity as he plays the pedal part in the left hand. Note for note, his performance is exactly as Bach wrote, with a few exceptions of repeated notes instead of octave leaps in the bass.

After an impressive virtuoso opening, "Acordeon" continues with a romantic nocturne by Kalatchewski. The Wieniawski "Scherzo and Tarantella" are also stylistically late-nineteenth century pieces.

The greatest surprises of the CD are the three original pieces composed by the artist. Bogdan Precz is not just a virtuoso accordionist, he is also an award-winning composer who has written not only for his instrument but also for chamber ensembles. He reveals his youthfulness by his affection for jazz/rock rhythms in his compositions. The first piece, "3-3-2" is named after the popular rock rhythmic ostinato (in eight notes: /// /// //) which forms the structural foundation for the piece.

"Sonata" is an impressive work which lasts nearly twenty minutes. The second movement, "Canzona, is particularly beautiful and poignant. "Fantasia Polacca" was the winner of the first place award in the Fifth International Composition Contest for the Accordion (Ancona, Italy) and was the compulsory test piece in the 38th World Competition for Accordion (Fontainebleau, France, 1988).

About The Free-Reed Review
Invitation to Contributors / Submission Guidelines

Back to The Free-Reed Review Contents Page

Back to The Classical Free-Reed, Inc. Home Page