Emma Johnson and Andrew West

MICHAEL DRAKE Gresham's School Auden Theatre, Holt


Gresham's School Auden Theatre, Holt

Yesterday evening's Subscription Concert was sparkling in form and dress.

Not that I was surprised - it was merely Emma Johnson being true to form. What is remarkable is the consistency in her performances, starting with a brightness and lyricism in Mozart's Variations K581.

Consistently moving with the music, it seemed it was coming from her body as well as the instrument, and in Schumann's Fantasy Pieces, where the instruction for the third was “fast with fire”, it was.

In Weber's Grand Duo both instruments were of equal merit and, as they were all evening, totally on the same wavelength. Operatic? Maybe. Romantic? Definitely - ending a first half of musical artistry par excellence.

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A more relaxed second period included Lutoslawski's Dance Preludes, varying from wistful to the final signs of rebellion to come, Elgar's Canto Popolare, From the South, which was beautifully lyrical and calming, and a swinging finale of Gershwin melodies to end a thoroughly entertaining evening.

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