Music review: Pierre-Laurent Aimard | Marco Stroppa
Edinburgh International Festival Scotsman review: Pierre-Laurent Aimard | Marco Stroppa at The Hub, reviewed by Carol Main
AS PIANIST Pierre-Laurent Aimard moved seamlessly from Kurtág’s Játékok to Marco Stroppa’s Traiettoria late on Sunday evening, it became clear why the Hub’s upstairs hall had been set up in the round or, more accurately, in the square given the shape of the stage and the seating arranged around it.
Composed for piano and electronics, the lengthy piece is a cycle of three movements that requires a set of speakers to surround the audience, allowing Stroppa to realise what seemed like an infinite myriad of synthesised sounds which interact with the piano part. It is all hugely complex but was utterly compelling in Aimard and Stroppa’s performance, piano and electronics being completely different voices but integrally dependent on each other in what was the definitive 1989 version of the piece.
Kurtág, as ever, was heard as the master of less is more. Surely one of the finest exponents of his piano music, Aimard’s selection of ten little solo pieces was personal and consequentially intimate, if predominantly serious, in its effect. Not even the tiniest of notes is superfluous in Kurtág’s detailed writing and Aimard’s absorbing performance captured its beauty as well as its magic.
Originally published in The Scotsman