MARK BEBBINGTON LAUNCHES A NEW PIANO SERIES - ‘PIANOGRAMS’ AT ST JOHN’S SMITH SQUARE
British pianist Mark Bebbington launches ‘Pianograms’, an exciting three recital series at St. John’s Smith Square, in which he contrasts themes of Grand Opera, Island Stories and Portraits with acknowledged masterpieces from the central piano repertoire - Schubert’s Sonatas in B flat major D960, A major D664, Franck’s Prélude, Choral et Fugue and Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition.
The series opens on Wednesday, 14th November with ‘Scenes from the Opera’, the first concert featuring Liszt’s virtuoso transcriptions for piano drawn from some of the great operas of Donizetti, Verdi and Wagner. From the introspection of Wagner’s 'Liebestod' and Liszt’s haunting reworking of Aida’s 'Duetto Finale', through to the pianistic brilliance of dazzling Lucia di Lammermoor and Rigoletto, Bebbington reveals the multiplicity of Liszt’s style and pianistic thinking. For the first half of this concert, Bebbington has chosen an undisputed masterpiece from the nineteenth-century, Schubert’s sublime and valedictory final Sonata in B flat major D960.
For his second recital on 4th April, 2019, 'Island Stories', Mark Bebbington includes John Ireland’s vivid evocation of an ancient Guernsey, Sarnia - perhaps his greatest work for solo piano. The inclusion of this work reflects Bebbington’s enthusiasm for British piano music and in particular the five ***** BBC Music Magazine reviews for his recent Ireland recordings. Timelessness is also conjured in Satie’s mystical Gnossienne, whilst Cesar Franck takes as his starting point the purity of J. S. Bach’s contrapuntal writing for his great work of spiritual pilgrimage Prélude, Choral et Fugue.
For his final recital, 'Portraits' on 4th July 2019, Bebbington has chosen one of classical music’s finest example of musical portraiture, Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition - a work perfectly matched to the grandeur and acoustic of St. John’s - which he will play alongside Schubert at his most lyrical and intimate, his Sonata in A major D664 and the Impromptus D899.