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Volume 6 of this series has a playing time of well over 80 minutes. Bavouzet’s zeal for this music is everywhere evident, including in his booklet ‘Performer’s Note’. The early Sonata No 11 in B-flat is a substantial work for the period, its slow movement punching way above its weight. Bavouzet pinpoints its doom-laden sense of tragedy perfectly, setting the Menuet finale into high relief. No 43’s first movement includes arresting Adagio interpolations, while it is impossible to resist the appeal of the play of the finale, an (unlabelled) set of variations. Bavouzet has a way with Haydn’s simpler textures, while finding both quartet and orchestral textures in the finale of No 35, revealing a Brendel-like wit in the process. The disc highlight is the magical Adagio of No 34, almost experimental in its use of register and silence. Bavouzet interpolates an effective mini-cadenza into the chirpy finale of No 36. Throughout, he adds effective ornaments in the repeats. Superb in all respects.

GUY WEATHERALL Read the full review on Agora Classica

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