The Aureus Academy is fast becoming one of the largest and most successful group of music schools in Singapore, and I am proud to launch their inaugural Concert Series of [...]
The Aureus Academy is fast becoming one of the largest and most successful group of music schools in Singapore, and I am proud to launch their inaugural Concert Series of Great Artists with a recital at the wonderful Esplanade Concert Hall in Singapore. The programme will comprise the Ravel/Weber/Liszt programme which I have been playing all this year, with the Ravel Miroirs at its core, and showing the different pieces and ideas which influenced Ravel to write these 5 wonderful piano pieces. I am looking forward to it already! As always I will be conducting a few classes whilst I am there which will be a total pleasure.
(Wednesday) 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
A programme with members of the London Mozart Players to celebrate the writing of Debussy's La Mer at this venerable hotel in Eastbourne, where the great man stayed and wrote [...]
A programme with members of the London Mozart Players to celebrate the writing of Debussy’s La Mer at this venerable hotel in Eastbourne, where the great man stayed and wrote this piece. The piece has been transcribed for piano Trio by Sally Beamish and will be part of this evening’s performance.Schubert’s Trout Quintet in the second half.
(Saturday) 6:30 pm - 9:00 pm
I am back with old friends the Skampa Quartet from Prague performing the rarely played Piano Quintet by Korngold. A bit of old Vienna, a bit of Hollywood, we look [...]
I am back with old friends the Skampa Quartet from Prague performing the rarely played Piano Quintet by Korngold. A bit of old Vienna, a bit of Hollywood, we look forward to making this monumental piece something to remember!
(Sunday) 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
In the festival’s opening concert, Melvyn Tan showed himself to be another of our great but relatively neglected figures. Probably no one today conveys so comprehensive an insight into Liszt’s B Minor Sonata. It was like hearing vivid performances of the past. His Beethoven — the Op 109 sonata — had unanswerable authority, and in between he played a work specially written for him: Jonathan Dove’s étude-like Catching Fire (2016), a minimalism-style repetitive “workout”, to use Tan’s word. His encore, Liszt’s concert étude Un sospiro, was captivating.
Yet the occasion had been transformed at its midpoint by Tan’s solo performance of Liszt’s Three Concert Etudes, S144. One wasn’t at all prepared for this modest manifestation of complete, devastating musicality. Virtuosity became poetry; phrasing became human breathing (not only in the third study, Un sospiro!); and the whole breadth of the keyboard (a modern Steinway, but lent a homely immediacy as of a period instrument) was constantly commanded as though a single handspan. It was pianism as stirring and illuminating as any I’ve heard.
Tan’s easy asides to the audience matched by his ingratiating engagement with the music, the beautiful sound that he produces, and the moments (…) of visionary grandeur – he is quite the shaman-showman. This exceptional recital cooled down with a dip into Debussy’s ‘Poissons d’or.’
‘With pianist and string players of one mind, the performance was an intensely musical one. The balance of sound was close to ideal, with the work’s understated instrumental virtuosity firmly placed to one side. (…) The applause was long and loud, so Tan and the quartet encored the latter half of the Scherzo.’
Despite the diverse compositional styles, each piece easily flows from one to the next, abetted by Melvyn Tan’s mellifluous and caring interpretations. A most enjoyable, enchanting 22 minutes of music, well worth downloading.