Ravel - Pizarro - The Herald

Artur Pizarro's vision of Ravel in his first volume of the complete piano music is restrained. All the warhorses are there: Gaspard de la Nuit, Miroirs and La Valse, as well as the shimmering Jeux d'eau. Those who like wishy-washy impressionism should go elsewhere: Pizarro's Ravel is a marriage of clarity, delicacy and unforced virtuosity. While Gaspard - Ondine saves its power for the swelling climax, in Scarbo Pizarro plays down the toiling bell motif, giving the music a rare haunting atmosphere. La Valse is the antithesis of splashiness, and the clarity of playing at the thunderous climax is outstanding.

03 March 2007