Cellist Paul Dwyer brings to life everything from early music on baroque cello to brand new works by young composers. He has appeared as soloist and chamber musician in the US, Europe and Asia, and has performed with Menahem Pressler, Jordi Savall and artist-faculty of the Juilliard School and Aspen Music Festival. A prize-winner of numerous competitions, Paul is also the recipient of the Javits Fellowship, Presser Award and a Fulbright Fellowship for studies with Anner Bylsma and Frances-Marie Uitti in Amsterdam. Paul holds degrees from Oberlin Conservatory, The Juilliard School and the University of Michigan, where he was teaching assistant to Richard Aaron. Paul is a founding member of Diderot String Quartet, ACRONYM, and The Colonials and joined Lyric Opera of Chicago as Assistant Principal cellist this fall.
Growing up in Vienna and Munich, Paul originally wanted to play the double bass, but was told he was too short. His varied musical explorations began soon thereafter: as a teenager, he co-founded a heavy metal cello quartet and sang the role of Polyphemus in Handel's Acis and Galatea. In his free time, he enjoys playing soccer, biking and brewing beer.
Bach: Courante, Cello Suite No. 1 in G Major, BWV 1007
Unlike most classical recordings where the edits and takes are chosen after the close of the recording sessions, Paul Dwyer and producer Josh Lee elected to record and edit the suites in real time within the studio. As Dwyer performed he would listen back to each take, focusing his point of view of each movement, only moving on when he felt he had captured his intended impression. Though this process took more time than typical recording sessions, the attention to detail within the moment allowed Paul and the Bear Machine production team to capture a sense of continuity and spontaneity missing from many traditionally produced classical recordings.
The cello used by Paul Dwyer on this recording is an exceedingly rare instrument made by Giovanni Battista Grancino, one of the finest makers of the Milanese school, around 1700 - about 30 years before Bach composed the cello suites. What makes this instrument particular is that is has survived for over 300 years virtually untouched or modified from when it was made. Most instruments from this era have been heavily modified to suit modern tastes, so it gives listeners a chance to hear Bach's music performed on an instrument much like those he would have known during his own lifetime. The instrument was kindly loaned to Paul Dwyer by New York based violin dealer and luthier, Christophe Landon, and was recently sold for over $1,000,000 USD.