James KreilingSt Christopher

Virtuoso piano
Event 11
Saturday October 17th, 12.00 noon 

James Kreiling
David Matthews
Two Dionysus Dithyrambs op94
John McCabe
Tenebrae
Cecilia McDowall
Shades of Solace; Vespers in Venice
Maurice Ravel
Gaspard de la Nuit

This is an archived event from the 2009 Programme.

James Kreiling piano

This promises to be an exciting event, as budding virtuoso James Kreiling plays Ravel’s stunning Gaspard de la nuit, and contemporary pieces by David Matthews, John McCabe and Cecilia McDowall. David Matthews has long been associated with the Festival:

"Pianist James Kreiling opened up a whole jeweller’s shop when he chose David Matthews’s Dionysus Dithyramb to begin his perfectly measured programme. The first of these two pieces inspired by Nietzsche’s poetry is a glorious meditation on stillness and rest, the second a wild dislocation of themes as the poet descends into madness" (Stephen Pritchard, The Observer)

John McCabe’s powerful and moving Tenebrae expresses the anger and grief the composer felt at the deaths of three musical friends. He was inspired by Liszt’s wonderful Venetian threnody on the death of Wagner, Lugubre gondola.

"McCabe’s substantial Tenebrae, which Kreiling set about with a combination of tension and virtuosity that showed the strengths of a flamboyant piece of memorial music" (George Hall, Guardian).

Cecilia McDowall’s music speaks directly to audiences. The powerfully accented Shades of Solace has hints of Scott Joplin, and the haunting sonorities of Vespers in Venice were inspired by a Turner painting. Ravel’s exciting Gaspard is one of the most virtuosic piano pieces, with wonderfully evocative writing. Its three movements are: Ondine (a water sprite), Le gibet (a chilling image of a distant gibbet), and Scarbo (a mischievous imp, continually changing shape in wild arpeggios).

James Kreiling is an impressive young pianist whose Park Lane Group recital last spring drew enthusiastic notices. Musical Pointers described him as "a pianist with a deft touch – especially in the left hand – and a sure control of extended melodic and harmonic line". Hilary Finch in The Times said he "presented David Matthews’s beautiful Two Dionysus Dithyrambs… with passion and perception"