Kenny Fu the making of an artist with poetry and intelligence at St Mary’s

Tuesday 7 June 3.00 pm

Some magnificent playing not only the ravishing beauty of a continuous outpouring of song with Liszt’s poetical transcription of Widmung and the Petrarch Sonnet 104 but there was from the very first notes the mystical magic of Siloti’s B minor Prelude and a Chopin Scherzo of aristocratic authority and excitement.
It was,though,the grandeur allied to a sense of character and architectural shape that he brought to Mussorgsky’s ‘Pictures’ that was so overwhelming .
To see this teenager touch and caress the keys as only a true artist could do brought to mind what Schnabel said of Mozart …too easy for the young and too difficult for adults.
Here was a young man with an orchestra in his ten fingers but it was his natural way of using his arms and body and the way he would withdraw his hands as though out of water that was of a born artist.
Of course being helped and nurtured by the Alexeev’s means his natural gifts will be transformed into great artistry of which Ealing can again be very proud.

It was the simplicity and luminosity of sound that was immediately apparent as this young man caressed the keys with such natural flowing movements.The entry of the chorale melody was of unforced beauty as his sense of balance and colour was of a rare sensitivity.Although he did not have the creamy rich sound of Gilels or the whispered concentration of Pisarenko he had a personality of unmistakeable authority in someone still so young.
A real tone poem and a continual outpouring of love of Robert for Clara who at last in 1840 could marry dedicating this beautiful song op 25 n.1 to her as a wedding present.Kenny found all the subtle poetry in a continual outpouring of beautiful sounds.His sense of balance in the central episode where the melodic line floats of a bed of romantic chords was of a pianist who listens carefully to the sounds he is making and is able to follow the musical line without it ever being submerged by an ever more passionate accompaniment.Freedom and control .Passion and intelligence.Remarkable sensitivity for a young man where life is only just beginning to open up.
Such improvised freedom to the opening with the beautiful melodic line passing from soprano to tenor with just barely suggested harmonies.Bursting into a great outpouring of song played with passion and a natural flexibility where the embellishments were thrown off with the same ease and shape of a bel canto singer.Some ravishing colours with a liquid purity in the coda of luminosity and mystery.
A performance of this well worn masterpiece restored by this young man to the pinnacle of the romantic repertoire.An aristocratic control and sense of style where Chopin’s often disregarded indications were restored to their rightful place.The beauty of the tenor line in the central section was answered by the crystalline delicacy of the soprano embellishments as it gradually built in excitement and technical difficulty.An ease of playing even in the most challenging passages gave an overall architectural line from the first to the last notes.And what excitement and power there was in the final exhilarating pages played by this young thinking virtuoso.
A extraordinary performance where this young man had been able to show us each of the pictures full of character and colour but at the same time had seen a greater picture,that of a monumental gallery.From the sudden dramatic appearance of the ‘Gnome’ to the subtle mystery and colour of the ‘Old Castle’.The clarity of the children quarrelling in the Tuileries with it’s quixotic central episode.The great authority he gave to ‘Bydlo’ moving forward like on a great wave.The rhythmic energy and precision he gave to the ‘Ballet of the unhatched chicks’ was contrasted with the great booming voice of Samuel Goldenberg with the beseeching luminosity of Schmuyle.There was amazing technical control in the ‘Market of Limoges with its exciting climax ending in the desolate emptiness of the Catacombs with the magic sounds of the ‘dead in a dead language’.’Baba Yaga’ bursting on the scene with such power and technical assurance with some magical orchestral colours in the mysterious central section.The Great Gate of Kiev that has taken on great significance in these last 100 days was given a remarkable performance .The gradual tolling of bells are those that we are all longing to hear as this young man built up the sounds with a transcendental sense of balance allowing the final great declaration to ring out with such sumptuous full rich sounds.It was the same beauty of sound that had been a hallmark of the entire recital by this young aspiring poet of the piano.

From his early solo debut at the Wigmore Hall to his attainment of the prestigious Sir Elton John Scholarship, Kenny Fu holds much potential and promise for a bright future. Kenny is currently completing his undergraduate studies at the Royal Academy of Music under the tutelage of Professor Tatiana Sarkissova. He has also received guidance from numerous esteemed musicians such as Dimitri Alexeev, Pascal Devoyon, Imogen Cooper, Bernard d’Ascoli and Angela Hewitt. His repertoire choices gravitate toward the late Classical and Romantic Eras where he brings an intense and captivating temperament to the works of Beethoven, Brahms and Rachmaninov. Kenny has found success throughout the UK and was recently a semi-finalist at the Sussex International Piano competition. During his earlier years he was the winner of the Solihull Young Musician of the Year and a Quarter Finalist at the BBC Young Musician of the Year. His reputation as a musician has also extended internationally where he was a silver medalist at the Cyprus International Piano Competition and a semifinalist in the Brescia International Piano Competition. Kenny has performed in distinguished halls such as the Fazioli Concert Hall in Italy, the Wigmore Hall in London, Kings Place, St Martin-in-the-Fields, and gives several charity concerts at local venues. He has also had the opportunity to give concerts in Germany, Italy and Canada.
Kenny is looking forward to his Postgraduate studies at the Royal Academy of Music where he has been accepted with a substantial scholarship.


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