REVIEW: Anna Tsybuleva, Ripon Cathedral

Anna Tsybuleva
Anna Tsybuleva

We were privileged to witness one of the finest young pianist’s in Europe performing at Ripon Cathedral. Anna Tsybuleva, who won the Leeds International Piano competition in 2015 is an intelligent and elegant young lady who gives what appear to be effortless performances and tonight was no exception.

It was also a delight, but possibly a trifle nerve wracking for Anna to have Dame Fanny Waterman sitting in the front row watching her protégé! Its hard to believe, but she is 97

The programme was an interesting mix with Scarlatti, Brahms, Mozart and Schumann. Scarlatti’s Sonata in A major K208 is short with a light repetitive theme played with a light hand and great musicality; his sonata in F Minor/major K519 is short but more complex and one of his most popular sonatas.

Anna’s versatility was to the fore in Brahm’s Sonata No 2 in F sharp minor a much more complex and demanding piece requiring considerable strength in the more vigorous sections – interestingly this strength appears to come from within, she’s not one of those pianists who seems about to leap out of their seat and, to my mind, all the better for that.

After the interval we moved on to Mozart’s Nine Variations in C Major. I love variations and these series of nine variations are a joy to hear and Anna’s touch and flair added to the enjoyment.

Sometimes the acoustics in Ripon Cathedral can be intrusive, but where I was sitting there was not a problem.

The final item on the programme was Robert Schumann’s Symphonic Etudes Op 13. These Etudes are in some measure Variations; composed or first published in 1837 they are individually short, but there being at least nine variations together with three others it is a long piece. Again it shows the pianists ability to control the emotions of the music and Tsybuleva again showed her mastery of the keyboard.

I enjoyed it and, judging by the applause, so did everyone else. She came back and played a delightful short piece by Prokovief – Prelude(The Harp) Opus 12.

An evening to remember. One can see a great future ahead for Anna Tsybuleva she really was remarkable.