Regent Piano Trio

FRANK CLIFF These three young artists, each with very distinctive musical personalities, provided wonderful music-making that had the audience enthralled.

FRANK CLIFF

Perhaps there were those in the audience at Friday lunchtime's recital who knew what was in store. I confess I was not one of them. I had never heard of the Regent Piano Trio – indeed its personnel was different from that advertised in the festival brochure. Yet these three young artists, each with very distinctive musical personalities, provided wonderful music-making that had the audience enthralled. They began with an electrifying performance of Beethoven's Opus 1 E flat trio, in many ways a showpiece for piano, yet Tanya Bannister's playing, powerful though it was, was always beautifully controlled. The ensemble was perfectly balanced and the Regent projected all the work's vigour, vitality and youthful high spirits.

Shostakovitch's second piano trio is a different proposition: a work of shifting moods, from the light-hearted to the intense, and there was much in this performance that was truly memorable; Katherine Jenkinson's cello pianissimo high harmonics and Alexander Sitkovetsky's violin perfectly capturing the haunting atmosphere of the opening andante; the wild virtuosic playing in the second movement, the sombre grandeur of the piano chords at the beginning of the passacaglia. Yet, what most impressed was the maturity of the Regent's grasp of the overall structure of this complex work which made this so memorable.

t The Regent Piano Trio performed at the Assembly House, Norwich.


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