05 November 2015

Recital pre recital

It's recitals season at the School of Music and various invitations are coming in and an occasional public performance in lieu, or in prep. Aaron Chew did two performances this week, I guess both in preparation for his Master recital. I missed one; heard the other. This was at Wesley Music Centre. The session was called SBS Sonatas (SBS = Scarlatti, Beethoven, Schumann). Scarlatti was short. Two little sonatas form a large set that he wrote: D minor K1 allegro and A major K208 Adagio e cantabile. Very attractive baroque keyboard music. Then a Beethoven piano sonata. I missed the series at this year's Canberra International Music Festival, so take note of Beethoven piano sonatas when they appear on stage, and they seem to, reasonably frequently. This one is also known as "Les Adieu" and recounts Archduke Rudolph's departure from Vienna in response to a French army (siege of Vienna, May 1809) and his later return. Interestingly, I am practising for Beethoven Symph no.3 Eroica which famously had the dedication to Napoleon removed. (A plug: Maruki Orch, Albert Hall, 2pm Sun 6 Dec; concert also includes JS Bach, Brahms, Gluck). The Schumann was in Gmin op.22, all powerful and engrossing and improvisatory and virtuosic. I liked that Aaron introduced the Beethoven with a snippet of melody to look out for. I was amused (and mightily impressed) when he slipped with a page turn for the last page of Schumann: the music dropped to the ground but he carried on to the end regardless. (He played the other works from memory). Considerable work is evident here; but that's to be expected. A great pleasure.

Aaron Chew (piano) performed sonatas by Scarlatti, Beethoven and Schumann at Wesley.

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