Keyboard Trust Weir Legacy award winner, Magdalene Ho, takes Leighton House by storm
Genius is hard to define but when you hear it there is no doubt of it’s presence .Tonight Magdalene Ho kept us enraptured by her total concentration and burning intensity mixed with an obvious shyness when her hands left the keys and she had to join us mortals on equal ground .
I remember hearing an 18 year old fresher at the RCM electrifying the audience at the Joan Chissell Schumann Competition with the Eighth Novelette of such luminosity and ravishing beauty but also total commitment to the sounds that were pouring out of her minuscule frame .
The next I knew Patsy Fou rang me during the night to say she had won first prize in the Clara Haskil competition in Switzerland.(Haskil one of the greatest musicians of her time similar today to Pires)
Now in the great hands of Dmitri Alexeev her playing has grown in strength and nobility as a young girl becomes a sensitive woman more aware of the world around her.
Bach playing of such clarity and architectural strength .
Beethoven’s op 109 of radiance and searing aristocratic beauty. But it was the Schumann Carnaval of extraordinary character and authority ,where Florestan and Eusebius could finally live together in such secure sensitive hands,that showed us what the word genius can really mean.