mon 08/02/2016

piano

Goyescas, Khamis, Houston, National Gallery

"I fell in love with the psychology of Goya and his palette,” wrote brilliant composer-pianist Enrique Granados at the beginning of an evocative paean prefacing his six original Goyescas of 1909-11, finely-wrought gems of the piano repertoire. In...

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Hadland / Moser Brothers, Wigmore Hall

Prokofiev milestones stood proudly at the ends of the New Year’s first three major UK concert programmes. The Second Piano Sonata raged as the zenith of the composer’s generous enfant terrible period in Christian Ihle Hadland’s journey through two...

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Piano Circus, Juice Vocal Ensemble, Kings Place

It is not surprising that Piano Circus rarely play on six real pianos (although the photo on last night’s programme cover shows just that). The expense, the stage space required and the logistical complexity all militate against it. But the sound...

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10 Questions for Composer Ludovico Einaudi

Last month, Ludovico Einaudi's album Elements debuted at No 12 on the UK album charts, which made it the highest-charting modern classical album since Henryk Górecki's Symphony of Sorrowful Songs reached No 6 in 1992. It was proof of the quietly...

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Freddy Kempf, Cadogan Hall

London foists hard choices on concertgoers. Over at St John's Smith Square last night Nikolai Demidenko was giving a high-profile recital of Brahms and Prokofiev. But since the Prokofiev CD which has had the most impact in recent years has been...

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Kovacevich, Argerich, Wigmore Hall

“People think when a person becomes old, he has to become serene,” declared that great pianist Claudio Arrau in his mid-seventies. “That’s absurd. The expressive intensity is, I feel, much stronger, much more concentrated in my playing than years...

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Pires, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Chailly, Barbican

Riccardo Chailly’s Strauss odyssey with his Leipzig orchestra peaked in Saxony last year, the 150th anniversary of the composer’s birth. I was lucky to catch a razor-sharp Till Eulenspiegel and a saturated Death and Transfiguration in Dresden’s...

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theartsdesk Q&A: Pianist Stephen Kovacevich

“Whatever happened to Stephen Bishop?” is not a question likely to be asked by followers of legendary pianism. Born in San Pedro, Los Angeles on 17 October 1940, the young talent took his stepfather’s name as his career was launched at the age of 11...

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Nelson Goerner, Wigmore Hall

Nelson Goerner has settled rather gloriously into being a musicians’ musician. An artist of this calibre should be selling out the Wigmore Hall – but it wasn’t his fault that yesterday was Monday, and the pianophiles who turned out to hear him were...

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Trpčeski, CBSO, Măcelaru, Symphony Hall Birmingham

Cards on the table: the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra is looking for a new music director. Having filled its new season with emerging talents – Andrew Gourlay, Daniele Rustioni, Ryan Wigglesworth and Ben Gernon, to name just four – it’s an...

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Prom 70: Lugansky, St Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, Temirkanov

Russian classics evening at the Proms? It could be what Alexandra Coghlan, writing about Prom 69, described as “another night at the musical office”. But given the masters in charge of two masterpieces fusing storytelling with symphonic sweep and...

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Prom 66: Uchida, LPO, Jurowski

After the broad, lyrical Shostakovich Tenth Symphony Andris Nelsons presented at the Proms last week, Vladimir Jurowski’s austere and unrelenting Eighth came as a shock. The two performances were equally fine, but at opposite ends of the...

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