Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 31 July 2014

Classical Music 29/1/10

Nikolai Demidenko

Over the next two weekends, the Ulster Orchestra is presenting a festival focused on Fryderyk Chopin, two hundred years since his birth.

The festival will set Chopin in an orchestral context which shows his influence on later composers, notably the Romantic Russian school of the late nineteenth century, and illustrates some of his older contemporaries such as Cherubini and Beethoven.

Often dubbed the ‘poet of the piano’, Chopin revolutionised the approach to the instrument as he delved into the personal characteristics which the piano can so expressively envelop. Chopin’s new harmonic idioms and attractive melodies caught the mood of the times.

That empathy survives to the present day through the performances of the great piano virtuosi. One of these is the Russian pianist Nikolai Demidenko, whose recitals and recordings of Chopin’s music always enquire into the very soul of the composition.

Don’t miss Demidenko’s all-Chopin concerts in the Ulster Hall on Sundays January 31 and February 7 at 3pm.

phammond13@hotmail.com

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