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HJ Lim spent last summer in the Faller Hall, near to her home in Switzerland, recording all 32 Beethoven sonatas. The cycle will be released via EMI throughout 2012 as four 2CD sets, with a boxed set promised for October. The 24-year-old Korean pianist has plumped to categorise the works thematically, and the first collections are entitled ‘Heroic Ideals’ and ‘Eternal Feminine: Youth’. This is glitzy Beethoven; the faster passages of the ‘Hammerklavier’ are taken at breakneck speed, and the keyboard seems to groan under the weight of some of her heavier phrases. Sonata No 4 is certainly ‘Con Brio’ and the third movement of the ‘Moonlight’ is one of the fastest interpretations I have ever heard. Traditionalists will find plenty to baulk at here, but there’s no disputing HJ Lim’s marvellous finger technique. Look out, Lang Lang.

CLAIRE JACKSON Read the full review on Agora Classica

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Piano International, 2012 - ©Rhinegold Publishing