Thursday 30 April 2015

Some especially fine Debussy on a new release from pianist Marco Fatichenti

Marco Fatichenti was born in Italy in 1980 and, after receiving his Diploma at the Rossini Conservatoire in Pesaro, Italy, moved to the United States to continue his studies in the class of eminent pianist Joaquin Achucarro at the Southern Methodist University, Dallas. In 2002 Fatichenti was granted a full scholarship to attend the Royal Academy of Music in London to study with Professor Christopher Elton. Having been a recipient for two consecutive years of the Myra Hess Scholarship, presented by the Musicians Benevolent Fund, and of a prestigious grant by the George Solti Foundation, Fatichenti finished his formal studies receiving the highly coveted DipRAM award.

A performer both as recitalist and chamber musician, Fatichenti has performed at venues across Europe and the United States, including the Auditorio Nacional de Musica in Madrid, the Teatro Arriaga in Bilbao, the Auditori in Barcelona, the National Concert Hall in Dublin and Birmingham’s Symphony Hall. Recent highlights include his debut at Wigmore Hall collaborating with the Pavao String Quartet and a chamber recital in the Palau de la Musica in Valencia.

His performances have been recorded and broadcasted by the Spanish RTVE, Irish RTE, Polskie Radio and several times by the BBC, including a live appearance in the program In tune presented by Sean Rafferty.

In the past few years Fatichenti has become a very sought after teacher and lecturer, being invited to take a position at Uppingham School and holding annual masterclasses in the prestigious National Young Pianists’ Week.

A new release from Fly on the Wall features Marco Fatichenti in works by Stravinsky, Debussy and Granados entitled Empire of Sound.

With Stravinsky’s Trois Mouvement De Pétrouchka, Dance Russe has an immediate flair and panache combined with moments of reflective poetry. Fatichenti has the measure of Stravinsky’s ever changing rhythmic motifs in Chez Pétrouchka with Fatichenti showing a lovely delicacy of touch and fine phrasing. There is more, fine phrasing and control of dynamics in the concluding La Semaine Grasse with this pianist achieving some terrific momentum as Stravinsky’s music drives forward, often with the feel of a live performance.  

Fatichenti conjures up the shifting harmonies of Brouillards in Debussy - Preludes: Deuxieme Livre, carefully controlling the dynamics with some particularly sensitive slower, quieter moments leading beautifully into Feuilles mortes with the same sensitivity, a fine poise, carefully and slowly allowing the music to unfold.

La Puerta del vino brings some fine rhythmic passages to which this pianist adds some fine flourishes. There is a rare spontaneity here that really is rather fine. This pianist brings fine rippling, fluent phrases to 'Les fées sont d'exquises danseuses' and there is a relaxed feel in Bruyères with some spontaneous sounding little phrases. This is beautiful, thoughtful playing.

Général Lavine – eccentric brings forth some fine flights of fancy with a fine coda before a limpid La terrasse des audiences du clair de lune, marvellously phrased, finely laid out and imaginatively conceived. Ondine is full of capriciousness with some lovely flourishes.

Fatichenti brings a sense of irony to the opening of Hommage à S. Pickwick Esq. P.P.M.P.C. before dancing through some lovely passages. Canope brings more gently phrased moments as this pianist slowly allows the music to unfold with some lovely little skittish moments.

Les tierces alternées brings some really fine, fluent playing as Fatichenti moves quickly ahead with a lovely control of dynamics, showing this pianist’s fine technique. Feux d'artefice is given an opening full of anticipation before slowly and carefully allowing Debussy’s fireworks to start bursting out, leading through some impressive passages before the coda.

These preludes give Marco Fatichenti the opportunity to reveal his sense of fantasy.

Fatichenti rises to Granados’ Goyescas: Los Majos Enamorados - El Amor y la Muerte (Balada) with playing of fine assurance, subtly finding moments of fine poetry. This is an impressive performance where Fatichenti shows his fine touch and fluency, beautifully shaped.

There are some lovely rhythmic moments in the second piece from Goyescas: Los Majos Enamorados - Epilogo (Serenata del Espectro), finely controlled dynamics with some very fine broad passages, full of assurance and breadth, revealing a lovely Iberian flavour as the coda arrives.

The more I listened to this recital the more impressed I became. His Debussy is especially fine, allowing his imagination to roam freely. He brings much to the Granados pieces showing a fine assurance and breadth as well as fine rhythmic qualities.

The recording made at Wellington College, Berkshire, England has a great immediacy though with a little dryness. There are interesting notes by Marco Fatichenti. 

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