Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Piano Master Is a Pole Apart

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Piano Master Is a Pole Apart

Article excerpt

Byline: BARRY MILLINGTON

CLASSICAL

Krystian Zimerman

Festival Hall

APPEARANCES by the Polish pianist Krystian Zimerman have acquired something of a cult status. For one thing, you're never quite sure whether he's going to turn up. For another, the reputation that precedes him is one of an artist endowed with almost superhuman gifts.

That Zimerman's talents are quite exceptional is not in question, as his recital of Mozart, Ravel and Chopin last night amply demonstrated.

This is a pianist who amazes with his remarkable nuances of touch, tone and texture, however, rather than sweeping you off your feet with profound insights or compelling originality.

Zimerman applies the left pedal (the una corde) far more liberally than most. Surprisingly he had it down for large parts of Mozart's C Major Sonata, K.300, where the effect was just a little precious. It made more sense in Chopin's Sonata No.2 in B Flat Minor, where the serene middle section of the Funeral March conjured a blissful realm remote from the pain and sorrow of the present life. …

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