<< -- 2 -- Lawrence Budmen SIZZLING PROKOFIEV
Neiman's Chopin was just as idiomatic and even more beautiful. He offered the Grande Valse in A flat Op 42; the familiar Valse in C sharp minor Op 64 No 2; the Mazurka in A minor Op 17 No 14; and the great Ballade in F minor Op 52. Neiman evoked all the dramatic turbulence, elegance, and aristocratic majesty that personify Chopin's unique contribution to the keyboard repertoire. Neiman's sense of the music's underlying pulse was impeccable. Rarely have the Polish dance rhythms been so finely delineated. His singing tone adorned every bar with ardor -- pianistic bel canto. Neiman did not ignore the dark side of Chopin's writing. The raging drama of the Ballade was stunningly projected. Neiman's marvelous affinity for the Romantic tradition of the music was deeply impressive. In nearly five decades of concert going this writer has rarely heard more exquisite, sensitively projected Chopin. Great music making!
Neiman opened the program with one of Schubert's late masterpieces -- the Piano Sonata in A minor Op posthumous 143. The mystery of the sonata's opening chords has rarely been so magical! Neiman's ability to relate the inner voices to the grand musical line was awesome! The heartfelt lyricism of the second movement seemed born on an ocean of glorious tone. Adam's sparkling performance of the finale was the essence of Vienesse charm. His pianistic control and subtle sense of chiaroscuro were impressive. Here was a performance that remained with the listener long after the music had concluded. Schubert playing of such delicacy and refinement is exceedingly rare.
As an encore Neiman offered one of his own compositions -- Vision, a skillfully crafted, impressionistic mist of flowing colors. The composer performed his attractive work con amore. Adam Neiman is a musician of stellar intellect and brilliant technical endowment. He does not merely play notes. Neiman caresses the keyboard and projects the composers' voices. A true artist!