Instrumental Award

Feldman & Crumb

Feldman Intermission 5; Piano Piece 1952; Extensions 3; Palais de Mari
Crumb Processional; A Little Suite for Christmas

Steven Osborne (piano)
Hyperion CDA 68108

Reviewed August 2016

Visee & Corbetta

Visée La mascarade & other works
Corbetta Passacaille en sol mineur & other works

Rolf Lislevand (Baroque guitar, theorbo)
ECM 481 1716

Reviewed November 2016

Mahan Esfahani

JS Bach Goldberg Variations

Mahan Esfahani (harpsichord)
Deutsche Grammophon 479 5929

Reviewed December 2016

Even music-lovers who normally hate the sound of the harpsichord find themselves mesmerised by Mahan Esfahani. He seems to have a magic touch on the instrument, coaxing out an extraordinary range of colour and articulations. Never has that been more evident than on this recording, where the playing matches the brilliant playfulness of Bach’s variations.

Audio clip: Variation No. 13

Mozart

Piano Sonatas Nos 6, 12, 14 & 16; Fantasia in C minor
Christian Blackshaw (piano)
Wigmore Hall Live WHLive 0076/2

Reviewed August 2015

After years away, Christian Blackshaw returned to the stage at the top of his game. A Wigmore Hall Mozart series in 2012 revealed his thoughtful artistry, exemplified by this superlative volume, the third in the series. Four varied sonatas and the dark Fantasia in C minor are all played with his hallmark luminous tone, natural grace and authority.

Schubert

Piano Sonatas Nos 18 & 21; Moments Musicaux; 4 Impromptus, D935
András Schiff (fortepiano)
ECM New Series 481 1572

Reviewed July 2015