Mark Westcott Artist, Piano Teacher, Lecturer, Author

American Pianist Recital 'brilliant'

Brilliant, young pianist, Mark Westcott, gave a recital in the Pilbeam Theatre on Saturday night to open the 1981 season of the ABC's subscription series.

If the recital was to be any indication of the calibre of the concerts to come, one may be assured of a great season.

Mark Westcott has an impressive and colorful background and is one of the most rapidly rising artists on the international circuit.

The programme opened with a Chromatic Fantasia and Fugue in D minor by J.S. Bach. This work was written originally for organ and due to the skill of the pianist it was not difficult to imagine the composer's original intention.

However, an unusual touch of romanticism flowed from the work - so different from one of the period. One particular feature was the dynamic development of the Fugue which is designed to create interest to the listener.

The pianist diverted slightly from the programme by playing three short pieces by Poulenc. This eased the tension, musically, between the first work and the following major work - Beethoven's Sonata in A Flat Opus 110.

This was performed with incredible ease and brilliance - the first movement demanding much expressive quality. The Adagio movement provided a feeling of tranquility as a prelude to the last movement, which finally developed to a rapid building of crescendo passages - relieved by the -(missing text)- demonstrated the pianist's great dynamic range.

The second half of the programme was immensely diverse beginning with a contemporary work by Scriabin, which opened up new paths of sound with -(missing text)- writing.

He wrote with rythmic freedom, moving from traditional harmony to modern dissonant sounds. The work gave the pianist great coverage of the keyboard space and much exploration for the left hand.

This was well executed throughout. The final work was Liszt's "Years of Pilgrimage". This produced beautifully painted pictures throughout and dramatic change of mood.

Mark Westcott demonstrated brilliant fingering technique and combined this with a feeling of romantic reflection during the melodic sections of the work. The subito forte sections were truly outstanding.

What can on expect or demand after a work such as the Liszt? The pianist cleverly chose a simple Romance by Schumann to complete a fine solo piano performance - MARY -(more text?)-

Copied by Ben Serna-Grey

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