Monday, January 24, 2011

REVIEW: Yevgeny Sudbin Debut Recital in Hong Kong

The strength of this recital lies on the intelligent and varied programming that showcased Yevgeny Sudbin’s unique pianism. Performing to a full house, this Premiere Performances recital featured Yevgeny Sudbin, one of the most successful young pianists today.

After interviewing Sudbin, I was able to attend his recital. Below is the link to my review for Time-Out Hong Kong:
http://www.timeout.com.hk/music/features/39923/yevgeny-sudbin-live.html

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Posted in Time-Out Hong Kong on January 24 2011

Yevgeny Sudbin Live
4 out of 5 stars

The strength of this recital lies on the intelligent and varied programming that showcased Yevgeny Sudbin’s unique pianism. Performing to a full house, this Premiere Performances recital featured Yevgeny Sudbin, one of the most successful young pianists today. The Russian’s debut CD of Scarlatti sonatas in 2005 was deservedly picked as an Editor’s Choice in iconic classical music magazine Gramophone and, in Horowitz fashion, he opened the recital with Scarlatti sonatas, in the F minor K466, in G major K455 and in B minor K27. All three were played appealingly with a distinct pianistic perspective, although at times they were a bit ponderous and lacked the lyrical quality of his recording.

What followed was a stark contrast. Shostakovich’s preludes in A minor Op. 34 no. 2, in B minor Op. 34 no. 6, in A flat Op. 34 no. 17and in D minor Op. 34 no. 24 were played with magic, mystery and mischief rather than with roughness and toughness, quite a compelling proposition.
The turning point came in the form of Chopin ballades No 3 in A flat major Op. 47 and No 4 in F minor Op. 52. What was so far a good performance turned into a great one. While the No 3 started a bit processed, it didn’t take long before Sudbin let the music take over. The results were intoxicatingly poetic with genuinely-felt rubato and inspired narrative.

The evening got even better with Liszt’s Transcendental Etude No. 11 in D flat “Harmonies du Soir” and Ravel’s Gaspard de la Nuit. The technique was impeccable, but the performance went beyond technique to astounding accomplishments of color, shade and poetry. In particular with Gaspard de la Nuit, Sudbin has the eerie ability to see beneath the surface of the music that gave a pictorial account that was full of imagination and almost upsetting. The evening was a remarkable Hong Kong debut for Sudbin indeed.

Satoshi Kyo

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