<< -- 2 -- Shirley Ratcliffe THE LOST CHORD
The programme opened with the popular Toccata and Fugue in D minor by
Bach -- or is it? There appears to be some doubt as to its authenticity.
This was a very idiosyncratic performance with snatched rhythms, a détaché
touch and a hard edge to the sound although the lines of subject and answer
in the Fugue were registered with great clarity.
Any fears one may have been harbouring were laid to rest with a performance
of Jehan Alain's Deuxième Fantasie. From its impressionistic
opening which leads into sounds of non-European influence it creates an
atmosphere entirely its own. Alain's premature death in 1940 was a terrible
loss to organ repertoire. Preston's extraordinarily sensitive performance
Inspired by Bach the player's own virtuosic and highly enjoyable Toccata
was thrown off with consummate ease, the organ seeming to revel in what
was being asked of it.
The first half ended with Jongen's Sonata Eroïca. Written
for the inauguration of an organ, it is designed to show off the many colours
of the instrument and the considerable technical capabilities required of
the organist. Both player and instrument emerged triumphantly.
Copyright © 29 October 2000
Shirley Ratcliffe, Norfolk, UK
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