Some very refined playing of great musicianship.A scintillating Haydn with ornaments that sparked and shone with such purity and freshness.An Allegro that was played with exemplary clarity and some subtle changes of register with a purity of sound and well oiled fingers.Lacking legato and shape that was obviously what Haydn had to accept on the instruments of the day but on the piano and with Gabriele’s temperament perhaps she could have allowed herself a little more pedal to add a greater sense of shape and beauty within the phrase.The Menuet was played with a touching simplicity and purity of finger legato which contrasted with the drama of the trio which again could have been helped by a touch of pedal.However it made the reappearance and the simplicity of the Menuet even more poignant.The presto was a tour de force of clarity and rhythmic energy to the last mighty statement in octaves and the two tongue in cheek final chords.An extraordinary finger technique allied to a musicianship and sense of historic style where she could discreetly added a touch of pedal to give more colour especially to the repeated notes in the Presto.Whilst rhythmically exhilarating they lacked a sense of direction due to their similarity and a more horizontal and less verticale approach would have allowed her more flexibility.However a remarkable performance where she preferred to look backwards to the harpsichord rather that forwards to the piano forte that was just on the horizon in the 1770’s.
Her beautiful lyricism in Prokofiev’s early fourth sonata was overshadowed by it’s ominous clouds and deep brooding bursting into the Poulencian joie de vivre of the finale.There were spine chilling ornaments in the opening meanderings of the Allegro molto sostenuto.Here she allowed herself full reign of the pedal and it gave a sense of colour and ease that allowed the music to unfold so naturally to the final decisive chords.There were deep bass chimes at the opening of the Andante assai that Prokofiev marks serioso before opening up to vibrating chords on which the melodic line floats so magically.She brought ravishing beauty to the tranquillo e dolce episode before the absolute dead wooden chords and a momentary respite.It contrasted so well with the return of the vibrating chords of the opening and the magic bell like sounds in the poco meno mosso before the end.The last movement just shot from her superb fingers with such ease as Prokofiev at last writes con brio in this up to now rather sombre sound world.Her playing was exhilarating and exciting with an astonishing technical ease that allowed the quixotic character of this movement to spring so easily from her fingers.
There was ravishing beauty in the Franck/Bauer with its haunting opening melody that pervades the whole work.It was played with a luminosity of sound bathed in pedal that with her very sensitive sense of balance allowed the melodic line to emerge unimpeded but sustained by rich bass harmonies.A subtle flexibility gave a moving but aristocratic shape of great sentiment but no sentimentality.Great flourishes of magical arpeggios announced the fugue that was played with simplicity and luminosity as it gradually grew in intensity.Some wondrous changes of colour building to an overwhelming climax out of which floated the opening theme on high on a cloud of quivering sonorities – a very similar moment of pure magic as in his Prelude,Chorale and Fugue written for the piano.A superb performance full of atmospheric colours and ravishing sounds.
Ravel showed off her kaleidoscopic sense of colour and considerable technical prowess.But there was also great control and sense of line and a natural musicality that turned even the astonishing glissandi into part of an architectural whole that kept us spellbound throughout her recital.Performances that showed her masterly control of sound and fearless virtuosity all with sterling musicianship and impeccable good taste.
Lithuanian pianist Gabriele Sutkute has already established herself as a musician of strong temperament and “excellent precision and musicality” (Rasa Murauskaite from 7 days of Art ). She has given many concerts and performed in numerous festivals throughout Europe and appeared in famous halls such as the Wigmore Hall, the Steinway Hall UK, the Musikhuset Aarhus, Jacqueline du Pré Music Building and Lithuanian National Philharmonic Hall. In addition to being a soloist, Gabriele frequently performs with chamber ensembles and symphony orchestras. In 2018, she had a trio performance alongside distinguished cellist Adrian Brendel in the RAM Summer Piano Festival and was also invited to play with the renowned Kaunas String Quartet in Lithuania. In 2020, she performed Rachmaninov’s 2 nd Piano Concerto with the Grammy-nominated Kaunas Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Markus Huber, and in 2019, performed this concerto with the Lithuanian National Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Modestas Pitrenas, at the Lithuanian National Philharmonic. Gabriele is a winner of nineteen international piano competitions where she also received numerous special awards. In 2022, she was awarded 2 nd Prize and the Audience Prize at the Birmingham International Piano Competition. For her musical achievements she received Lithuanian Republic Presidents’ certificates of appreciation six times. The pianist is also an artist at Talent Unlimited and is the recipient of the prestigious Mills Williams Junior Fellowship 2022/23 and the Jacob Barnes Award 2021. Gabriele has had masterclasses with professors and pianists such as S. Kovacevich, I. Levit, I. Cooper, S. Osborne, O. Kern and many more acclaimed musicians . From 2016-22, she has been studying with Professor Christopher Elton and received her Bachelor of Music Degree (First Class Honours) and Master of Arts Degree with Distinction from the Royal Academy of Music. For the outstanding performance in her Postgraduate Final Recital, she also received a Postgraduate Diploma (DipRAM). Gabriele was awarded a full scholarship for the Artist Diploma course at the Royal College of Music and began her studies there with Professor Vanessa Latarche and Professor Sofya Gulyak in September.
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