Music review: Olga Jegunova

Edinburgh International Festival Scotsman review: Olga Jegunova at The Hub, reviewed by Christopher Lambton

Rarely does one come across a young musician who understands as completely as Olga Jegunova what it is to perform. Her technical ability is allied to a composure and charm that entranced her audience.

All the young players in this Live Music Now concert series have introduced their pieces, but only this young Latvian pianist had given as much thought to her words as to her music, so when she played we were there already.

And can she play! She began with the first movement of Mozart’s A major sonata (K331), whose simple theme belies the complexity of what follows. As she cantered through the variations, there was a playfulness and vivacity in the left hand articulation that drove the music forward.

Schubert followed: the dreamy G flat major Impromptu and the F minor Moment Musicale led the way rather neatly to a couple of Moments Musicaux by Rachmaninov, the second of these a big piece that really showed us what this young woman is capable of.

After the sparse, snowy landscape evoked by Peteris Vask’s White Scenery, Jegunova closed in style with a virtuosic study by Rihards Dubra – a showy elaboration that he has since tried to disown.

Originally published in The Scotsman