A leading interpreter of contemporary classical plays Stockhausen, Boulez and Messiaen, including the UK premiere of an unpublished work.
The evening opens with Trois Psalmodies by Pierre Boulez, written in the summer and autumn of 1945 at the conclusion of his period of study with Messiaen, and strongly influenced by the style of his teacher.
The second half of the recital features a mature work by Boulez, the unfinished Third Sonata, which was first performed by the composer at Darmstadt in 1957.
In this evening’s performance, the two published movements are preceded by the unpublished opening movement, Antiphonie, on which Boulez worked over a period of some six years up to 1963.
The Boulez works are separated by Stockhausen’s Klavierstück X, one of the most large-scale of his solo piano works.
Its extensive exploration of keyboard resonance and clusters may well have been influenced by Boulez’s innovative use of harmonics in the central movement, Constellation, of his Third Sonata.
This recital ends with two familiar pieces by Messiaen from the Vingt Regards cycle – a work that Boulez heard in private performances by Yvonne Loriod while they were both students of Messiaen.
O’Hagen’s attention to the varieties of touch and pedalling demanded by Boulez's fanatically precise notation were all that could be desired
Boulez: 3 Psalmodies Stockhausen: Klavierstück X Interval Boulez: Piano Sonata No.3 Messiaen: Le baiser de l'enfant Jésus; Regard de l'esprit de joie from Vingt Regards sur l'enfant Jésus