My appearance at the wonderful London Piano Festival this year at Kings Place will include a premiere by Kevin Volans called L'Africaine for Piano. Ravel Valses Nobles et Sentimentales and [...]
My appearance at the wonderful London Piano Festival this year at Kings Place will include a premiere by Kevin Volans called L’Africaine for Piano. Ravel Valses Nobles et Sentimentales and the 5 Mirrors will also be on the programme, beginning with Weber’s Invitation to the Dance. In the evening I join esteemed colleague and friend Danny Driver performing 4 hand and 2 piano works by Schumann and Lutoslawski. Bring it on!!
(Saturday) 2:00 pm - 9:00 pm
My October appearance in Singapore will be my debut with the young and dynamic new Chamber Orchestra group from Singapore called re:Sound!! A fund raising gala soirée at the British [...]
My October appearance in Singapore will be my debut with the young and dynamic new Chamber Orchestra group from Singapore called re:Sound!! A fund raising gala soirée at the British Residence in Singapore Eden Hall on the 13th October will precede the actual concert on the 18th October. Programme will include Jonathan Dove’s Air Mail Letter from Mozart written for small chamber group and Piano and Mozart Piano Concerto in G K453.
(Wednesday) 7:30 pm - 10:00 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.