Francesco Piemontesi's new album on avanticlassic is critically acclaimed
Published: 01 July 2011
Francesco Piemontesi has just released his new recital CD on Avanti Classic featuring works by Handel, Brahms, Bach and Liszt. The label, in collaboration with Radio Svizzeria Italiana and the Borletti-Buitoni Trust, gave the Swiss pianist carte blanche for the disc and Piemontesi put together a fascinating programme that reflects the influence of Handel and Bach’s music on Brahms and Liszt.
Hear Francesco Piemontesi in an excerpt from Brahms' Variations on a Theme by Handel:
“a musician of rare intelligence”
The Sunday Times
“Clarity of thought is complemented by clarity of touch, incisive intellect by a good dose of fantasy.”
BBC Music Magazine
“an impressive recital with musicality in abundance”
“composer wins over ego, musical integrity over flashiness, tireless preparation over hopeful inspiration….This pianist reveals a powerful gift of intimacy. You have to stop and listen.”
“The young Swiss-Italian Francesco Piemontesi combines communicative panache with remarkable insight. He prefaces a virile, sensitive performance of Brahms’s Handel Variations with a stylistically discerning one of the Handel suite from which Brahms took his theme. Bach’s Partita No1, Liszt’s transcription of the G minor Fantasy and Fugue and Vallée d’Obermann provide further evidence of Piemontesi’s exceptional talent.“
“Franceso Piemontesi's latest recital disc confirms the fine impression left by his set of Schumann's piano sonatas released by Claves last year. There's a real aristocratic sweep to this 27-year-old Swiss pianist's playing; the Handel suite from which Brahms extracted the theme of his Handel Variations is generously expressive, while Piemontesi's account of the Brahms Variations themselves is full of delicacy and transparent textures that make you hang on every phrase….Piemontesi's unaffected Bach playing is recognisably all of a piece with his fundamentally unflamboyant approach to Liszt, which manages to present the rhetorical grandeur of Vallée d'Obermann truthfully, without exaggerating it in any way.”
Le Monde has commented on this new recording as follows: “Intelligence, refinement, elegance of tone, as well as complete clarity of polyphony are all characteristic of this musician. This is particularly beneficial in Brahms’ Variations and Fugue on a Theme by Handel, which is superbly interpreted.”
The NDR Culture Radio chose Piemontesi’s recording as CD of the week and observed that no matter which piece he plays, Piemontesi always brings out the melodious lines. “Nothing ever seems fractional or cobbled together. With him it is not about showing off or athletics. He looks to express this music in much more refined and more discrete ways. His healthy self restraint in the use of the pedal benefits first and foremost Bach’s B major partita. And the manner in which he embeds adornments in the repetitions shows a very high level of artistic intelligence.
After a Schumann CD and the recording of his first Klavier-Festival Ruhr concert, this is Piemontesi’s third disc and gives us very good reason to believe that there is a lot to be expected from him."