Derby Cathedral organ recitals by
Ian Hare, Sophie-Véronique Cauchefer-Choplin,
Peter Gould and Jonathan Gregory, David Briggs,
Simon Bell and David Johnson,
reviewed by MIKE WHEELER
6 July 2005 : Ian Hare
In terms of conception, 19th-century organ music doesn't come much grander than Liszt's Prelude and Fugue on BACH. Ian Hare resisted the temptation to over-play his hand at the start, keeping a firm grip on the music's architecture with a fine control of pace and registration. He made something veiled and mysterious of the central fugue, and his virtuoso pedalling in the work's later stages was impressive.
The same ability to take the long view was evident in Leighton's Prelude, Scherzo and Passacaglia. His choice of colours emphasised the sombre, brooding quality of the Prelude, and his shaping of the Passacaglia was compelling.
His ability to bring clarity to contrapuntal textures was well demonstrated in the middle two movements of the Overture to Handel's Occasional Oratorio, and in two Bach chorale preludes.
In the less heavyweight pieces, Hare brought an easy, graceful swing to Bairstow's Scherzo, and a fine sense of rhythmic verve to Gigout's Grand Choeur Dialogué. His own Three Dances were delightfully enjoyable, Spanish Dance drawing on the usual rhythmic and harmonic clichés just enough, and no more, to give it recognisable colour; Sarabande had a fine sense of atmosphere, Gigue some teasing cross-rhythms.
Copyright © 23 August 2005
Mike Wheeler, Derby UK