REVIEW: Classical music concert season in Sidmouth begins with recital by Japanese pianist

PUBLISHED: 15:00 13 October 2018

Pianist Reiko Fujisawa. Picture: Contributed

Pianist Reiko Fujisawa. Picture: Contributed

Contributed

Reiko Fujisawa recital is the first in a series of monthly concerts running until March

Japanese pianist Reiko Fujisawa launched the Sidmouth Music concert season with a recital in the Parish Church on Saturday, October 6.

Reiko took up the piano at the age of three at home in Japan. Her studies, and later her career, brought her to London where she is now based, and she performs across the UK and overseas. For her recital in Sidmouth, she chose a programme centred on the life of Clara Schumann as composer and pianist.

The second Intermezzo from opus 119 by Clara’s great friend Brahms provided a gentle opening piece, given clear open phrasing by Reiko, reflecting its introspective personal nature.

Two of Clara’s own compositions followed. A Scherzo, written at age 20, showing her love of Chopin’s style, was bright and sparkling and driven along at a rolling pace. A Romance, opus 21, was given suitably restless, more searching, treatment.

The Pathétique sonata, intended to represent Clara’s renown at playing Beethoven’s works, was given a muscular and vigorous presentation by Reiko. She was almost aggressive with the weighty chords of the first movement but then showed lyricism in the gentle second before driving on to the agitated end of the third.

Reiko closed her first half with a song, Frühlingsnacht, by Robert Schumann. Transcribed by Liszt for piano, the piece was typically bright and virtuosic.

After the interval came three Impromptus by Clara’s hero, Chopin. Starting with number two, Reiko gave an airy feel to the introduction, an appropriately portentious march section and florid ending. She followed this with number one, alternately exuberant and introspective as the moods progressed. The last of the three was number four, in which Reiko showed charm while avoiding over-sentimentality. These were well received, numbers two and four inducing in the audience the silence of deep attention.

The major piece in the second half was Robert Schumann’s Viennese Carnival Jest, its five movements showing Reiko virtuosic, wistful, jolly, passionate and energetic in turn. Finally, Reiko produced another Liszt transcription of one of Schumann’s songs, Widmung; a short but yet powerful statement of love from prospective husband to wife.

Stephen Huyshe Shires

Comments have been disabled on this article.

Other News Stories

18:00

Beautiful flowers, displays and spots which have been manicured to perfection helped to secure Beer a gold award at the South West in Bloom awards.

Read more

Volunteers provide a weekly round-up of local news stories in audio format, for people with visual impairments

Read more
17:05

Two men were left injured after a car was rammed, ‘possibly in a retaliation’ after an altercation between two groups in Whimple.

Read more

Sidmouth is expected to come to a standstill as part of a people’s march to mark 100 years since the end of World War One.

Read more

Fresh plans to build a multi-million pound business park at Sidford have been refused on account of the number of lorries to would bring.

Read more
07:00

Two more independent shops will close their doors, disappearing from the town’s high street for good.

Read more
Yesterday, 11:00

Sidmouth Repair Cafe upcycles two broken benches to make a strong new seat

Read more
Sunday, October 14, 2018

Clever acting brings to life a motley crew of comedy gangsters

Read more
Sunday, October 14, 2018

An eight-year-old bookworm has joined a growing list of youngsters to complete a literary challenge to read 100 books.

Read more
Sunday, October 14, 2018

Ed Dolphin, treasurer of Sidmouth Arboretum and newly appointed Sid Valley Tree Warden takes a look at the autumn colours.

Read more

Local Weather

Sunshine and Showers

Sunshine and Showers

max temp: 17°C

min temp: 12°C

Most Read News

Useful Links

Family notices
Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Submit a Story
Buy Photos
Competitions
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Image
Read the Sidmouth Herald e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sidmouth Herald twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy


Show Job Lists


Find planning applications