With a five-star review from Italy’s numero uno music magazine called, simply, Musica, Stephen Hough’s Chopin recital has captured another corner of the globe. It is no secret that he is one of my favourite pianists and Musica’s Riccardo Risaliti, a respected Italian critic and pianist, loves him too:
Frédéric Chopin: The Complete Waltzes, Stephen Hough (piano) – Hyperion
All [the Chopin waltzes] are here performed by the valued and illustrious pianist from the Hyperion label, Stephen Hough who, for several years, has been proving that he has all the credentials necessary to be classified amongst the best interpreters of the Romantic repertoire, and of Chopin especially (remember the CD of the Late Masterpieces?).
His importance has been acknowledged since we got to know him through the two CDs of short pieces he recorded for Virgin. It’s not only the transcendental technique of a genuine virtuoso, but above all the poetic nature and unequalled charm in his playing, and an interpretive originality made up from imagination and unpredictability. And so it is here with these waltzes.”
Graham Spicer is a writer, director and photographer in Milan, blogging (under the name ‘Gramilano’) about dance, opera, music and photography for people “who are a bit like me and like some of the things I like”. He was a regular columnist for Opera Now magazine and wrote for the BBC until transferring to Italy.
His scribblings have appeared in various publications from Woman’s Weekly to Gay Times, and he wrote the ‘Danza in Italia’ column for Dancing Times magazine.