horizontal line

Norma Fisher was born in wartime London to Russian-Polish parents. Generous to a fault, she is revered by the students she nurtures today at the Royal College of Music. Her many broadcasts from the ’60s to the ’90s shaped and influenced a generation.

Listening to this elegant collection – ‘another life, another person’, she calls it – enriches the human condition. Her Liszt – Mephisto Waltz, Venezia e Napoli, the F-minor Transcendental Etude (1985) – is dumbfounding: a cocktail of jewelled pianism and bared, burning imagination, of agonisingly beautiful phrases breathing and taking wing, of timbres and emotions, weighted communications of the soul, variegated through the registers. ‘My whole desire [as a young woman] was to be taken over by – transported by – whatever I played…’ That’s exactly the listener gets. Schumann’s Sonata in G minor (1984), with the original finale, is proud, dynamic, yearning, intimately fragile, structured, intense – a poet guiding us. Three miraculously nuanced Debussy Études descry a faded Gallic age. Analytically focused, André Tchaikowsky’s Inventions Op 2 (a 1984 broadcast) are exactingly detailed, glassy in attack, sparingly pedalled, not a note without function or personal investment. Reference playing. Vintage studio production.

ATEŞ ORGA Read the full review on Agora Classica


   Read full review   


To continue reading, please upgrade to a premium account. You will have immediate full access.



Read more classical music reviews online here:



Piano International, 2020 - ©Rhinegold Publishing