Touring soon for Musica Viva: Stephen Hough
Stephen Hough loves heated discussions, bowler hats and finding unlikely connections between contrary composers. He received the 2010 Royal Philharmonic Society Instrumentalist Award and boasts a host of other performing prizes, but interestingly considers composing to be a central part of his life. His international concert schedule is too crowded to detail in full, but his performance of all four of Tchaikovsky’s works for piano and orchestra at the 2009 BBC Proms cannot pass unremarked. The complete Renaissance Man, he also finds time to keep his Twitter entries current and write his biweekly blogs about everything from performance practice to the Papacy.
With typical lateral inventiveness Hough has devised a journey from the dangerous familiarity of Beethoven’s ‘Moonlight’ Sonata to a work many regard as Liszt’s greatest composition, through the twisted paths of two Scriabin sonatas that Hough calls “hyperventilated, hypercrazy, ecstatic works.”
This surprising journey is enriched with a work written by Hough himself, jointly commissioned by Musica Viva for this tour. It will comprise “small, concentrated pieces on a related theme… fragments of a kind of tragic, wasted nature trying to capture a feeling of despair and sadness in as little time as possible.”
“This recital is really about weird sonatas, in a way,” smiles Hough. It’s also sure to illuminate and intrigue, and provide another opportunity for the pianist to showcase his fierce strength, disciplined articulation, dexterity and musical passion.