ALISON CROOSE Burnham Westgate Church
Burnham Westgate Church
The 34th Burnham Market Concerts feature the piano and the series began with an impressive recital by a young Irish pianist enjoying a flourishing international career.
Finghin Collins demonstrated his burgeoning talent with a broad repertoire which challenged his virtuosity. But he came through with flying colours, providing a delightful and interesting evening.
He immediately established a mastery of the keyboard with a strong physical presence as he launched into Handel's Suite No 5 with its familiar air, The Harmonious Blacksmith.
Collins's style was also well-suited to the intensity and seriousness of Mozart's powerful Sonata in C Minor with its sharply contrasting phrases and dynamics.
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He introduced a modern flavour to the programme with Philip Martin's The Rainbow Comes and Goes, commissioned for the inauguration of Dublin International Piano Competition in 1988.
Another more contemporary work was Roberto Gerhard's Dances from Don Quixote, a one-act ballet which uses Catalan folk elements and infectious dance rhythms.
Collins is particularly renowned for his empathy with Schumann so it was appropriate that he ended with Schumann's piano sonata, Faschingsschwank, and for an encore he played Reverie from Schumann's Scenes of Childhood.