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The atmospheric cover of this disc, a picture of an old piano on the beach on an overcast day with waves lapping close by, seems to sum up the general demeanour of this recording of film music by Michael Nyman. Valentina Lisitsa is an ideal interpreter, making the music her own; yet the recording itself is clearly influenced by Nyman’s own tastes (quite close, occasionally somewhat pingy). So it is that Lisitsa misses out on the visceral impact of the repeated notes in Chasing Sheep is Best Left to Shepherds from The Draughtsman’s Contract but highlights the composer’s debt to baroque music in the central part of that piece beautifully. Nevertheless, she seems to revel in the Bartókian open intervals of Here to There from The Piano or the Coplandesque quick dance Fly Drive (from Carrington). At nearly 80 minutes, this is high value for Nyman fans.

COLIN CLARKE Read the full review on Agora Classica


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