To continue the Broomhill Festival, pianist Hannah Donkin, a final-year music student at the University of Sheffield, played a well thought-out programme of three works linked by a common reliance on dramatic contrast.
Donkin began with the last of Lera Auerbach's 24 Preludes, Op. 41, an arresting opening to the recital, contrasting Messiaen-like eruptions with gentler tonal passages. This gave way to Chopin's beautiful Fourth Ballade in F minor, Op. 52. The performance had the right sense of momentum throughout, though occasionally needed a bit more flexibility to convey the melancholy of the main melody.
The rest of the recital was devoted to Kabalevsky's Third Piano Sonata in F major, Op. 46. The war-inspired drama of the work was well matched by Donkin's self-assured playing which, throughout the three movements, demonstrated the combination of virtuosity and sensitivity needed to characterise the constant confrontation of the music. Overall, a well-chosen programme, excellently played by an emerging talent from whom we hope to hear more.