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Torsten Ratzkowski  :  Six Studies : Bergmann

Torsten Ratzkowski

Bergmann Edition: 16 pages


This set of six studies is intended as part two of a previous collection (Called Step by Step and available from Schott – Edition), and although I can’t comment on that first set, all I can say is that this latest edition is a wonderful set of unusual, interesting, melodic and yet utterly original pieces that are very useful as studies, even though they do work as just lovely pieces!

So we open with Dreaming , which is a slow melodic tune atop some long held chords that are very melodic but do not necessarily follow on from one to the other in the way you might be expecting.

The second piece ‘Study’ is a very small piece that relies on its fast triplet semi – quaver rhythms to provide the difficulty factor, which is quite considerable.

Prelude is the next piece, and is marked Rubato, so that the almost constant semi – quavers do have the option to be slightly freer in tempo than you might at first think.The pattern that is repeated on these arpeggiated semi – quavers is slightly different to normal;, and that creates the ‘study’ element of this piece.

The fourth piece Studie (spelt differently from No2 !) relies on patterns of arpeggiated chords intermingled with open strings that come and go as you proceed in the arpeggio, which does tend to tie your fingers up at first , but again it is very musical as well as being a piece that will improve your technique.

Idyll, takes the arpeggios with open strings intermingled a stage further and care really has to be taken with this piece, as it is constantly on the move but nevertheless very cleverly done and musically satisfying throughout.

The final piece Studie is an Allegro 3 / 4 in E Major based on one rhythm throughout its two pages, of a bass note on the first quaver, and a rising triplet of semi – quavers on the 2nd quaver followed by four more quavers, but still manages to be interesting and quite varied in its approach.

So,  to summarize, this is an imaginative, slightly different , and vey musical set of studies that are going to be useful to many guitarists, s well as being really fun to play.


Chris Dumigan

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