Magazine article Musical Opinion

Mark Bebbington Recital at St James's, Piccadilly

Magazine article Musical Opinion

Mark Bebbington Recital at St James's, Piccadilly

Article excerpt

The young British pianist Mark Bebbington gives a recital at St James's Piccadilly on July 17 at 7.30pm, with music by Haydn: (Sonata No 54 in G major Hob XVI/40), Beethoven: 'Appassionata' Sonata; Ireland's London Pieces and Chopin's Barcarolle Op 60; Tarantelle in A flat Op 43; Nocturne No 4 in F major Op 15 No 1 and Second Scherzo in B Flat minor. The contrast of two classical Sonatas, with a second half of English Impressionism and Chopin, is an intriguing one, and - as Bebbington explained - "Early Haydn Piano Sonatas tend to be neglected by pianists in favour of the later so-called 'English' Sonatas, yet there are a wealth of gems amongst the earlier works, including this delicious two-movement G major Sonata (1784). The first movement could almost be transcribed piecemeal to a String Quartet, but the Finale could only be conveyed on a keyboard - Haydn at his wittiest best.

'The advances in the development of the pianoforte could not be more marked in Beethoven's Appassionata Sonata - justifiably celebrated as one of the composer's 'heroic' mid-period works, it exploits both the increased dynamic range of the instrument and Beethoven's mastery of Sonata Principle, to produce his greatest piano sonata to date (1804-5)."

The critical plaudits which have greeted Mark Bebbington's performances and recordings have singled him out as a British pianist of the rarest refinement and maturity. Increasingly recognised as a champion of British music, Mark has recorded extensively for SOMM 'New Horizons' label to unanimous critical acclaim, resulting in numerous five-star recordings of British works, including London Pieces by John Ireland, which he will perform in this recital. …

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