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Louise Cournarie recital, 4th June 2016

An evening of great variety from this young French pianist.  Louise is about to embark on a doctorate at the RAM, specialising in the performance of English and French baroque music on the modern piano - something that has perhaps been out of fashion for a few years.  And this concert gave us a fine demonstration of why she believes there is feeling and passion to be uncovered in the baroque repertoire just as much as in the romantic.

 

The oldest piece in the programme was Purcell's Suite in A minor, one of a relatively small number of keyboard pieces that have survived from this English composer.  From just a few year's later, Rameau's suite in the same key from his first book of harpsichord pieces contained some lovely melodic moments as well as showing off the player's great technique - particularly some astonishing trills in the Vénitienne movement!

 

Moving on in time, Mozart's Sonata number 12 (K332) was perhaps the least confident performance - Louise has been suffering from a damaged finger and not been able to practise as much as usual.  But you certainly would not have guessed it from the way she tackled the mountain of Schubert's late sonata in A major, D959.  It is a fabulous work, at times intensely lyrical and at others quite tortured as the composer seems to be all-too aware of death's approach.  Bravo Louise!

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