Sunday 2 April 2017

Two piano recitals noted, not reviewed: Katz and Sokolov

These concerts will have to remain simply as diary items, I am afraid. (I flatter myself that someone else might care!) Having been very busy during the past week or so of March, as well as – well, you know that little thing Theresa May did and how it might have affected me, I simply ran out of time to review these two piano recitals. I hasten to add that that should not in any sense be taken as a comment on the performances. Had I had time, I should have greeted more fully excellent pianism from Amir Katz and indeed the wonderful opportunity to hear all twelve of the Transcendental Etudes in concert. (I do not think I have had it before.) I mean no disrespect to a pianist I certainly hope to hear again by saying that the memory of Grigory Sokolov’s performances of KV 545, 475/457 and Beethoven’s final piano sonata (as well as no fewer than seven encores, one of them as substantial as Schumann’s C major Arabeske) will, I hope, remain with me forever. What Sokolov can do with the instrument… But I should stop there, before this turns into an ersatz review.

In the meantime, I have also been taking in more spoken drama (very good, I hope, for my German): which I almost always keep as a treat to myself: something on which I shall not have to write. Normal service will be resumed shortly; this evening, I shall be going to the Komische Oper for the first night of Barrie Kosky’s new production of a Mussorgsky opera. No, unless you know, it is almost certainly not the one you were thinking of: it is The Sorochintsy Fair. More soon…

24 March: Amir Katz (piano), ‘Hommage an Liszt’ (Konzerthaus)

Nocturne in A-flat major, ‘Liebestraum’ no.3, S 541/3
Three Concert Studies, S 144
Two Concert Studies, S 145
Transcendental Studies, S 139

29 March: Grigory Sokolov (piano) (Philharmonie)

Mozart – Sonata in C major, KV 545
Mozart – Fantasia in C minor, KV 475
Mozart – Sonata in C minor, KV 457
Beethoven – Piano Sonata no.27 in E minor, op.90
Beethoven – Piano Sonata no.32 in C minor, op.111