Ilya Kondratiev at the Elgar Room

Full house at the Royal Albert Hall for the young russian pianist Ilya Kondratiev. Impeccable Mozart as you would expect from the class of Vanessa Latarcheat the RCM where this young virtuoso is perfecting his quite considerable artistry. If the last movement of K310 could have sung and been shaped with more legato was probably due more to the piano than Ilyas natural musicianship. Strange how in Liszts Fantasy and Fugue on BACH it is the performer that is fundamental whereas in Bach the instrument and performer are incidental. And what a virtuoso performance we were treated to. It is also nice to remember that it was this score that my old mentor Vlado Perlemuter had on his music stand when he died a few years ago. And what a coincidence that Ilya followed the Liszt with one of Perlemuters favourite pieces Debussy Pour le Piano. Here given a magnificent almost orchestral performance without a hint of sentimentality.I could just imagine Vlados approval. Three Preludes by Gershwin admirably suited to Elton Johns Red Piano Tour Yamaha, generously donated to the Elgar Room by Marksons pianos ended this ,that was in so many ways a remarkable recital. Virtuoso performances full of excitement and energy but sadly lacking in the sense of song that Ilya so magically projected as encores in three Schubert/Liszt song transcriptions . Here Ilya sang his heart out with a sumptuous sense of balance and colour and made you realise just what neglected masterpieces these really are. No mean feat for a young man on a Sunday morning. Here he is pictured with Canan Maxton from Talent Unlimited who does so much to help these wondrous young musicians find an audience.That is all they need…..no mean feat though these days l

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