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Peter Donohoe has excelled in many areas, notably his Scriabin recordings, as well as in Stravinsky, Rawsthorne, Messiaen and Shostakovich. His disc of Rachmaninov with Martin Roscoe on Naxos remains a joy. The present release comprises Volume 1 of a projected Mozart sonata cycle; terrain which has been traversed a million times on record, most notably in modern times by Uchida. Here, at his finest, Donohoe’s articulation can be a delight, as in the finale of the Sonata No 17 K570; elsewhere, however, there is a lack of connection between the pianist and composer, nowhere more so than the somewhat clumsy central Adagio of K570. The Adagio of K280/K189e (Sonata No 2) is similarly uninvolving.

The recording, made at Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, is excellently judged and Christopher Morley provides a fine set of booklet notes; despite which a recommendation is not deserved.

COLIN CLARKE Read the full review on Agora Classica


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