Student recital pleases

Diploma students from the Rhodesian Academy of Music provided an entertaining lunch-hour recital at Bulawayo City Hall yesterday.

It was good to sense that each of them was finding personal answers to interpretive problems; playing with conviction and not to patterns imposed on them by their instructors.

I liked Rose Tobias’ warm and relaxed performance of the Prelude and Fugue in E major from the First Book of Bach’s 48, though I must continue to question the use of the sustaining pedal in clavichord or harpsichord music performed on the piano.

Colleen White gave a colourfully characterized account of the first movement from Haydn’s 52nd pianoforte sonata, though her fingerwork was not always ideally clean.

How neglected these Haydn sonatas are, and how prophetic of Beethoven.


Margaret Archer threw the dynamic and temperamental contrasts pf the finale of Beethoven’s sonata Op. 2, No. 1 into strong relief. One could quibble over a certain overemphasis of the drama but I guess that awareness of the power of understatement comes only with age.

Accompanied by Hugh Fenn, Patricia Pearce (flute) played the first movement of the Poulenc Sonata. As always, her phrasing, tone, breath control and musical acuity, were admirable.

It was the first time I had heard Richard Campbell as a pianist. His performance of Brahms’ B flat minor Intermezzo from Op. 117 was sensitive indeed. He penetrated deep into quiet resignation which pervades Brahms’ late piano works, allowing himself an expressive amplitude which never became just sentimental.

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