Many years ago I received a request from the son of the composer Maurice Emmanuel to perform his Piano Sonatines. I duly learnt a couple and performed them, and very pleasant they are (somewhat in the style of early Debussy, and slightly forgettable). Emmanuel (1862 – 1938) studied at the Paris Conservatoire at the same time as Debussy, and in time became the teacher of music history to the great composers Olivier Messiaen and Henri Dutilleux. Emmanuel’s works testify to a wide breadth of interests including folk music and Hindu chants. (French composer Jacques Charpentier’s Etudes Karnatiques for piano are very interesting virtuoso piano works incorporating Indian modes – an uncommon interest – perhaps one sparked by his teacher Messiaen, who in turn had been taught by Emmanuel).
Anyway the purpose of this post is to say a big “Hat’s Off!” to French pianist Laurent Wagschal who has recorded the Sonatines for Timpani label.
I have never heard of Wagschal before, but his playing on YouTube is WONDERFUL! Such good sound. Such good fingers. Such supple technique. Also, Such a good piano, and Such good recording!
What a pleasure.
Whenever I am despairing of finding a living pianist whom I admire, one just pops up.
His playing reminds me of the sonorities and virtuosity of the wonderful blind French pianist Bernard D’Ascoli.
Here is Wagschal’s website
You can buy the CD here (does anybody still buy CDs?) http://www.prestoclassical.co.uk/r/Timpani/1C1194buy CD Emmanuel
Keep practising everybody!