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A sonically- and dramaturgically-convincing, deeply-internalised interpretation

VAN Magazin, Wendelin Bitzan

Rarities that shouldn’t really be: a week of pianistic excellence without a show or representative setting in Husum.

The weather in Husum was very mixed, in contrast to the quality of the performances in the Rittersaal of the castle, which convinced me from the very start. An example of how the Festival was put together came from the first recital, by Anglo-Japanese pianist Hiroaki Takenouchi, who opened his program with two British barcaroles by Percy Sherwood and Dorothy Howell, and then devoted himself to a pair of large-scale piano cycles from the 1920s: the C-sharp-minor Variations, op. 22 by Marcel Dupré, and the Second Improvisation, op. 47 by Nikolai Medtner, which was composed shortly afterwards, heavily influenced by Dupré’s work and dedicated to it.

Takenouchi translated the bond and aesthetic kinship of the two composers into a sonically- and dramaturgically-convincing, deeply-internalised interpretation, and remained masterful even with the intricate textures of Medtner’s symbolistic tonal language.

Loosely translated from German.

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