Music and Vision homepage All Risks Musical - an irreverent guide to the music profession by Alice McVeigh


<<  -- 3 --  Shirley Ratcliffe    THE LOST CHORD


The programme had been designed to explore all the instrument's facilities. One work occupied the second half: Widor's Symphony No 5 in F. Although exquisitely played and registered, as the piece wound its tedious, derivative way through four movements -- and why is so much mediocre music (with some notable exceptions) written for the organ? -- I gained the impression that most of the audience was waiting for that Toccata. At last it emerged allowing us to marvel yet again at Preston's technique. As we came to the final chord, a glitch occurred and all we got was a stunning silence ... Preston pummelled the keys and eventually was able to bring the piece to a close to tremendous cheers from the audience. Mopping his brow he assured us that 'this is not a practical joke, it's never happened to me before!' With considerable courage he returned to the platform to play a study by Bossi as an encore without anything else untoward happening.

What happened? Will it happen again? Theories abound but your guess is as good as mine. Meanwhile there are three more recitals to savour:

Dame Gillian Weir (26 January); Nicolas Kynaston (8 March); Wayne Marshall (30 April).

Copyright © 29 October 2000 Shirley Ratcliffe, Norfolk, UK





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