Saturday, 25 August 2012

Xiayin Wang in Rachmaninov

In the process of digesting Yuja Wang in Rachmaninov, and others, I divert along the way to a new CD featuring Xiayin Wang in Rachmaninov. All these talented Wangs! I find Xiayin entirely enjoyable and convincing. Technically, she is completely on top of the difficult pieces on this disc. Her musicality and sensitivity shine through in such contrasting pieces as the 6th and 7th of the Op 16 Moments musicaux – the first being quite breathtaking in its murmurings, the second devastating in its power and command. Throughout the CD, I particularly admire Ms Wang's ability to twist and turn with every nuance of Rachmaninov's music; here is a pianist who is living the pieces she plays.

My kind of pianist. I like pianists called “Wang” and must investigate Xiayin further. And Rachmaninov's music is growing on me apace. Like all the turn of the century composers, he had a bad press with many of the critics, the avant-garde and the so-called opinion makers. But a hundred years of so on, Sergei Vasilievich's music has survived and enjoys constant and widespread popularity with both performers and listeners. Including me.

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