Schubert sonatas

Newest Releases

Piano solo and duet
  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett

Some items
to consider

Free classical music concerts by Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra.


Moravec - Twelfth Night Recital
15%off £17.21 (until Dec 7)

Katerina Englichová - harp
15%0ff £10.83 (until Dec 7)

  • Today's leading<br>clarinet-piano duo
  • Stellar debut<br>piano recital
  • Clarinet transcriptions Jonathan Cohler
  • Jonathan Cohler & Claremont Trio
  • French clarinet masterpieces
  • Today's leading<br>clarinet-piano duo

Sibelius Symphonies Maazel
4CDs + Blu-ray audio
Special Price £36.75

RVW A Sea Symphony - Elder

Shostakovich Symphony 10 Nelsons

Verdi Requiem

Dvorak Opera Premiere

Grieg, Mendelssohn sonatas




Would you like a hyperlinked weekly summary of the CDs we have reviewed?

Click for further details

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
Classical Editor
Rob Barnett
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
Editor in Chief
   Stan Metzger
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger



Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on

Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical


Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
Cameo Classics
Prima voce
Red Priest
Toccata Classics

Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
Classical Editor
Rob Barnett
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
Editor in Chief
   Stan Metzger
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger


Ludwig van BEETHOVEN (1770-1827)
Sonata quasi una fantasia, Op. 27, No. 2 (Moonlight) [16:03]
Robert SCHUMANN (1810-1856)
Fantasiestücke, Op. 12 [28:13]
Frederic CHOPIN (1810-1849)
Fantasie Op. 49 in F minor [13:02]
Kevin Kenner (piano)
rec. Opole Philharmonic Concert Hall, February 2008.
DUX 0633 [55:57] 

Experience Classicsonline

The idea of the Fantasy - Fantasie, Fantasia, Phantasy … pick your preferred spelling - has been around for a few hundred years. And why not? What would be more tempting to a composer than to let his or her imagination run free, unrestrained by the rules of form? Works by some of the earliest keyboard composers in the early sixteenth century bear the title. The romantic composers had a field day with the genre, producing some magnificent and original works.

Beethoven’s two sonatas Op. 27, which bear the name “quasi una fantasia”, make use of this musical free-wheeling in their opening movements. The “Moonlight” so named by the poet Heinrich Rellstab when he commented that the first movement reminded him of the moonlight over Lake Lucerne, opens with what in other hands could have been a monotonous chord progression of broken triads, followed by a rather out of character and jaunty second movement. It ends with a c-sharp minor thunderstorm by which a pianist could easily sprain a wrist. 

Robert Schumann’s collection of miniatures is intentionally programmatic, each with whimsical titles. Rapid-fire shifts of emotion mark these gems that can at one moment lull the listener into reveries and at the next send him bolting out of his easy-chair. 

Chopin gives us a work on a far grander scale, a composition that runs the gamut of emotions from serenity to broad rushes of emotional turbulence. 

It is all delivered with great finesse by the American pianist Kevin Kenner, heretofore unknown to me, but who seems to have established a fine working relationship with the Polish Dux label. A musician of excellent pedigree, Mr. Kenner plays with great technical authority and with a fine sensitivity to structure, form, tonal shading and expression. Perfectly able to exhibit technical brilliance, Mr. Kenner chooses to disguise his prowess in subtleties rather than to blast us with unseemly keyboard pyrotechnics. His playing of the much over-recorded Beethoven sonata is governed with impeccable taste. Even the flashy finale is rendered with much elegance, with careful attention to inner voices, and with special care to make the perpetual arpeggios come across with clarity and precision. 

His Schumann can be positively dreamy where allowed; powerful and authoritative where appropriate. The contrast between Evening with its serene melody and Soaring with its jet engine power is so pronounced that the shift between movements can be startling. 

Finally, Mr. Kenner delivers a beautifully restrained account of Chopin’s Op. 49. It is so easy to romp through Chopin’s music just to show off, and somewhat rare to find a player who has discovered the poetry in the music. Kenner is just such a musician, and he is able, through carefully crafted phrasing and a fine singing melodic line to bring off this music in such a way as to never belie its technical sand traps. 

As always, the highest compliment I can pay to a recording is that it left me wanting to hear more from the artist. This is just such a disc. Kevin Kenner is a fine discovery; one that I hope will come to even more international attention in the future. 

Kevin Sutton




Making a Donation to MusicWeb

Writing CD reviews for MWI

About MWI
Who we are, where we have come from and how we do it.

Site Map

How to find a review

How to find articles on MusicWeb
Listed in date order

Review Indexes
   By Label
      Select a label and all reviews are listed in Catalogue order
   By Masterwork
            Links from composer names (eg Sibelius) are to resource pages with links to the review indexes for the individual works as well as other resources.

Themed Review pages

Jazz reviews


      Composer surveys
      Unique to MusicWeb -
a comprehensive listing of all LP and CD recordings of given works
Prepared by Michael Herman

The Collector’s Guide to Gramophone Company Record Labels 1898 - 1925
Howard Friedman

Book Reviews

Complete Books
We have a number of out of print complete books on-line

With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site


Nostalgia CD reviews

Records Of The Year
Each reviewer is given the opportunity to select the best of the releases

Monthly Best Buys
Recordings of the Month and Bargains of the Month

Arthur Butterworth Writes

An occasional column

Phil Scowcroft's Garlands
British Light Music articles

Classical blogs
A listing of Classical Music Blogs external to MusicWeb International

Reviewers Logs
What they have been listening to for pleasure



Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Pat and present

Helpers invited!

How Did I Miss That?

Currently suspended but there are a lot there with sound clips

Composer Resources

British Composers

British Light Music Composers

Other composers

Film Music (Archive)
Film Music on the Web (Closed in December 2006)

Programme Notes
For concert organizers

External sites
British Music Society
The BBC Proms
Orchestra Sites
Recording Companies & Retailers
Online Music
Agents & Marketing
Other links
Web News sites etc

A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Site History  
What they say about us
What we say about us!
Where to get help on the Internet
CD orders By Special Request
Graphics archive
Currency Converter
Web Ring
Translation Service

Rules for potential reviewers :-)
Do Not Go Here!
April Fools

Return to Review Index

Untitled Document

Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.