Carole Nash Recital Room, RNCM
26 January 2017
It takes a lot of Liszt to make a concert, as Alan Ladd almost said to Veronica Lake in The Blue Dahlia (screenplay by Raymond Chandler).
Here Ran Feng played five works for piano by Liszt and they were all, in a sense, unloved children: little rated by public or critics or, it seems, colleagues. You read in the programme, for example, that Brahms fell asleep while listening to the last of these works, the Sonata in B minor.
The idea of focusing a concert on a great composer’s lesser known or appreciated works is an intriguing one – and I mean, it is Liszt, so how bad can it be? – and thankfully this turned out to be a very worthwhile experience. The best of the music had a thunderous quality together with a kind of melodic gold at its core. Ran Feng performed excellently throughout, industrious and attentive to the demands of the score.
I enjoyed the concert very much and have been inspired to learn more about Liszt.