It is unusual to feature two pianists on stage simultaneously in concert. Mr Peter Noke and Dr Julian Hellaby gave a tour de force of what their virtuosic collaboration can deliver in front of a capacity audience at Changzhou Grand Theatre.
The concert launched with a powerful rendition of Richard Addinsell’s Warsaw concerto, which reminds one of Rachmaninov’s late Romantic writing.
It is followed by three Bagatelles by Robert Ramskill that exhibit both jazz and Spanish traits. This musical journey then continues onto France with Darius Milhaud’s Scaramouche and Germaine Tailleferre’s Sonata.
The highlight of the evening is undoubtedly Variations of a theme by Paganini composed by Witold Lutoslawski. This is a show piece that demands exceptional technical dexterity and remarkable musical insight. Our audience were astonished by how these two pianists can produce such a complex sound world that is only imaginable with a full symphony orchestra.
At the conclusion of the concert, both pianists shared their afterthoughts with our pupils to draw their whirlwind visit to an end.
Both Mr Noke and Dr Hellaby have been a source of inspiration for many of our pupils. We look forward to their next visit in the near future.