Saturday, October 31

Rhapsody – Worbey & Farrell

- March 1, 2020

Cabaret, musical circus, panto speciality act, stand-up virtuosity – this event was not what Brighton & Hove Philharmonic Society usually presents, but then some of the audience were much younger than usual too as the BPO outreach programme had invited a host of aspiring pianists who brought their siblings and parents along too. The youngsters were not the only ones happily learning about music throughout this inspiring concert. We could have felt patronised but one is just in awe of such accomplished, dare-devil playing.

Steven Worbey and Kevin Farrell are astonishing, hyper-active musicians, able to play seriously and super-well, all the while fooling about in a CBeebies manner that kept even the youngest entertained and interested.

Their programme of infamously difficult pot-boilers by the likes of Liszt, Khachaturian and Piazzolla was made almost impossible by their insanely complex arrangements and their cross-handed antics. However, in all this excitement there were some tender moments and their telling of Prokofiev’s ‘Peter and the Wolf’ was particularly endearing. Gershwin’s ‘Rhapsody in Blue’ made a substantial climax the equal of any orchestral performance.

These two masters of the keyboard played the audience with as much assurance as the Steinway – virtuoso and fun, an excellent entertainment.

Dome Concert Hall,
1 March 2020
Rating: ★★★★★

Andrew Connal

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