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King’s Lynn Festival coffee concert at Town Hall has enthusiastic audience says Andy Tyler in his review

The latest Lynn festival coffee concert was well attended, with the Town Hall full, and the enthusiastic audience rewarded with fine performances of piano music by Beethoven and Mussorgsky, given by talented young pianist, Noah Zhou.

Noah, currently studying at the Royal Academy of Music, has performed in many countries both giving solo recitals and taking part in orchestral concerts, and has also been the recipient of several musical awards.

His Festival recital consisted of Beethoven’s Piano Sonata, No.11 in B flat major, op.22, one of his greatest early sonatas, but not so well known or performed much in recitals.

Noah Zhou performed at a coffee concert as part of the Lynn festival
Noah Zhou performed at a coffee concert as part of the Lynn festival

It marks a final farewell to the late eighteenth century style of Mozart and Haydn, and was played with style, delicacy, and passion when required, by Noah.

It’s always good to hear Mussorgsky’s original piano version of his Pictures at an Exhibition, inspired by an art exhibition of architect and painter Victor Hartmann, a close friend of the composer.

The paintings were on display in early 1874 in St Petersburg, and the suite consists of ten musical views of the pictures and an introductory promenade, which returns throughout the work in various ways, and then at its conclusion.

The piece has a definite Russian flavour and atmosphere, Noah’s performance was full of drama, coping well with the music’s frequent changes of mood, and contrasts, as well as its technical challenges.

Let’s hope for more quality coffee concerts at the festival in July.

Review by Andy Tyler

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