Monday, 26 September 2016

Riveting counterpoint: Kimiko Ishizaka in Bach's The Art of Fugue

Kimiko Ishizaka Photo credit: Intuitive Fotografie - Philippe Ramakers
Kimiko Ishizaka
Photo credit: Intuitive Fotografie - Philippe Ramakers
On Friday (24 September 2016) the pianist Kimiko Ishizaka performed Bach's The Art of Fugue at St John's Smith Square, giving the UK premiere of her own completion of the work. Before the concert I gave a pre-concert talk, talking about the historical background to the work, what survives of Bach's intentions for the final, incomplete fugue, and how other performers have approached completing (or not completing) the piece.

It was a great occasion, with an audience who were clearly riveted by Kimiko's playing. The Art of Fugue is not a light work, 80 minutes of intense counterpoint which Kimiko plays from memory, and requiring concentration from performer and audience. You can read more about Kimiko's performing in my review of her performance in Cologne in March this year.

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