What a fun evening!  Gorgeous weather, great performance, enthusiastic audience and high energy level.....  a member told me that the recitals get better every time - it is such a complement and very pleasing comment to receive.  The whole evening was almost perfect, except for some annoying daddy-long-legs flying around in the concert room!

Tom and Alasdair form an excellent combination. Their timing and balance their the two instruments was so precise.

Evelyne performed two recitals for us - this review is of the first one which was targeted at children.  You can read a more in-depth review of the evening Soirée, including photographs and her complete biography.

It was our first experience to promote a Matinée concert for children and families at Breinton, but given the overwhelming response, we plan to make this a regular feature. We released tickets for Evelyne's Matinée recital and for the evening Soirée at the same time; to our surprise the Matinée sold out very quickly, before the Soirée.  We are very happy to learn that there are many enthusiastic parents out there!

Chopin's Ballade No. 4 is still playing in my head - what a profound, solid and convincing ballade and I just loved the way Evelyne played it.

I think all our guests at this Soirée agreed that Evelyne gave a stunning performance.  I'd like to write about Chopin's Ballade No. 4 in particular, for it has always been my favourite.  Evelyne's mother, Elena, gave the pre-concert talk and quoted quoted John Ogdon who said "it is the most exalted, intense and sublimely powerful of all Chopin's compositions... It is unbelievable that it lasts only twelve minutes, for it contains the experience of a lifetime".  And for the audience at Breinton, this life-time experience was expressed fully by 18-year old Evelyne.

What professionalism!  What musicianship, and what talent!  Pianist Alexei Grynyuk had it all.  The whole audience was swept away by Alexei's pianism on Saturday evening.  Let me share some post-recital excitement, quoting a  message I received:  "....what a wonderful recital.  What a delight and privilege to listen to such superlative pianism.  I'm still reeling from Alexei's incredible skill and the sumptuous content of the program.  Fabulous."


There are many Chopin recitals this year to celebrate the bicentenary of his birth.  Sure enough, I went to one just last week, a concert by Yundi at the Royal Festival Hall. So, a big challenge for pianists is often how to differentiate their recital.

On 20 March, we welcomed Colin Stone to Breinton to a highest-ever capacity audience and our fastest selling recital to-date. Colin's programme included a variety of Chopin's works: a good combination of early and late compositions; and well-known, often-played pieces and less-known, less-played pieces. The evening, sandwiched between Ballades No. 1 and No. 4, appealed to me even before the recital started!

It was a fantastic evening for all of us. Masayuki Tayama is undoubtedly a splendid virtuoso; a pianist who not only delivers a phenomenal performance but also connects and communicates with the audience. He is very friendly and laid-back, nothing arrogant about him which made all us feel so comfortable.

His playing is very precise. I feel he is very faithful to the score and recreates what the composers wished to express. This impression hasn't changed since the first time I heard him. I love pianists who are precise; I love to sit back, close my eyes and relax when listening to music I adore, not noticing mistakes here and there.

On this summer Saturday, our house was packed with members who came to enjoy a Beethoven themed evening. Pianist Alexei Grynyuk and Cellist Leonard Elschenbroich gave a truly stunning and memorable performance. These two young musicians, gifted with talent and musicality, armed with technical skills and artistic expression, played four of five of the Sonatas composed by Beethoven.  They did not hesitate to use all their energy and share their interpretation of Beethoven.

Both Alexei and Leonard possess amazing technique.  I'm sure it comes from total dedication and years of practice, but it was also so amazing to see and hear that talent up close.