Night and Day: Wednesday, April 3, 2003
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
A Kissin Time

The backlash against Evgeny Kissin finally arrived. What a long time it has been in coming, considering how long the guy has been around. The Moscow native, who was still a critics’ darling when he last played in Fort Worth in 1999, made his recital debut when he was only 11 years old and played with the Moscow State Philharmonic a few months after that. He was still a teen-ager when the West finally got a chance to hear him, and he was more than a whiz kid with lightning-quick fingers. He had real personality and a probing intelligence to go with his incredible technique and his electrifying sense of musical drama. These qualities remained through his twenties so that he was largely spared critics’ barbs after he was no longer a child prodigy.

Lately, that hasn’t been the case. Some have accused him of turning into a cold, mechanical, unsubtle player who cares only about wowing the crowd. Others have faulted him for making strange interpretative choices merely for the sake of being different. (These viewpoints are hardly consistent, but critics can be that way sometimes.) In his concert this week, he’ll be playing Schubert’s quiet but terrifying Piano Sonata No. 21 in B-flat major, Liszt’s sweetly expressive Petrarch Sonnet No. 104, and the blood-and-thunder Mephisto Waltz. This program should allow us to check the progress or regression of this still-young pianist.

Evgeny Kissin plays at 8pm Wed at Bass Performance Hall, 555 Commerce St, FW. Tickets are $10-75. Call 817-335-9000.


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