Lovers of classical music were treated to an excellent concert on Tuesday evening at the Sunderland Pianoforte Society, in the Museum and Winter Gardens. The pianist was Ashley Fripp, making a very welcome return visit to the Society. The first half of the programme consisted of two contrasting sonatas – opus 10 no.3 in D major by Beethoven and opus 14 in D minor by Prokofiev. Ashley took full advantage of the piano’s dynamic range to express the differing moods of the various sonata movements. His performances of both works were powerful, but delicate where the music demanded.
The second half of the recital was devoted to Rachmaninov Preludes – the set of ten forming opus 23, preceded by the well known prelude in C sharp minor (opus 3 no.2). Ashley Fripp has a formidable technique allied to a deep understanding of the pieces he is playing. He was able to establish good rapport with the audience, and gave us a sensitive and altogether satisfying recital, with a Chopin mazurka as an encore.
Sunderland Pianoforte Society started its 74th season with a recital given by Jinah Shim, a young pianist who was sponsored by Making Music’s Philip and Dorothy Green Award for Young Concert Artists scheme. An enthusiastic audience was treated to an interesting programme which was beautifully played .
The evening began with the Schubert Sonata in A, Op.120 and was followed by three impromptus, Op.90 nos.2,3,4, all played with great sensitivity and style appropriate to the period.
After the interval we heard the Fantasie in F minor, Op.49 by Chopin followed by a powerful performance of Ballade No.2 by Liszt. The recital ended with L’isle Joyeuse by Debussy which was clearly enjoyed by both pianist and audience and made a very good start to the season.
Jinah Shim began learning the piano at the age of five and was a winner of the European Piano Teacher’s Association competition in 2005. She then went on to study at the Birmingham Conservatoire as a junior student where she won many more prizes. Notable past performances include Grieg’s Piano Concerto in Birmingham’s Symphony Hall, Rachmaninov’s 2nd Piano Concerto and Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 12. As well as solo playing Jinah is interested in Chamber Music and has performed with her own Piano Quartet, the Hill Piano Quartet.
Making Music is the UK’s leading organisation for voluntary music and the Society appreciates the financial help which enables us to present such talented young pianists.
Sunderland Pianoforte Society finished its 73rd season with a recital given by Jens-Hagen Wegner, the brilliant young German pianist who won second prize in the Liszt Piano Competition. This was well attended by an appreciative audience who enjoyed some wonderful playing. The first half of the programme was given to a performance of music by Liszt, which included lesser known works as well as the famous Liebestraume and Benediction de Dieu dans la Solitude.
After the interval the recital continued with a very individual performance of the Sonata no.2 in B Flat Minor by Chopin, a well known work in which artistic licence was used to the full but with great effect. Jens-Hagen Wegner had given a lot of thought to this work and he had managed to bring some completely different sounds to those usually heard. This was clearly a work that he loved playing and in the Funeral March the piano was used to create some beautiful sounds which were followed by the last movement with its intense and abstract sounds. A masterful performance. The Valse Impromptu, Landler, Kaskaden and Rhapsodie by Dohnanyi were a good contrast to the intensity of the Chopin, with the Rhapsodie being a good, lively end. However the audience wanted more and were given a performance of Un Sospiro by Liszt.