Freddy Kemps, Norwich

MICHAEL DRAKE It is difficult to believe that Freddy Kemps is only in his mid-20s. At this Norfolk & Norwich Music Club he showed not only brilliant technique but allowed his character to shine through his music.

MICHAEL DRAKE

It is difficult to believe that Freddy Kemps is only in his mid-20s.

On Saturday, for the Norfolk & Norwich Music Club presentation at the John Innes Centre, Colney, he showed not only brilliant technique but allowed his character to shine through his music.

It was the independence of upper and lower parts which was the dominant feature from the highly-decorated Ouverture and Aria, via the gentle Courante and wonderful vision of the fugal Menuet, of Bach's Partita No 4.

The opening Allegro of Schubert's Sonata No 20 in A is unsettling and here Kemps highlighted the drama with intensity then extracting the full pathos of the Andantino before returning to its bare necessities then lightening matters via a skittish Scherzo.

Chopin's Four Ballades are full of stark contrasts – No 1 in particular after the reflective opening – allowing the soloist to display his remarkable virtuosity and drawing spontaneous applause. That was not entirely inappropriate, as the pieces were not conceived as a continuous set.

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The second Ballade followed in the same vein and in the fourth, after a gentle second theme, the pianistic fireworks took over.

Yes, it was a showpiece programme – but what a show.

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