Put Bellucci on your Liszt: this week’s classical music highlight
The fearless Italian pianist goes operatic at this year’s Blackwater Valley Opera Festival
Giovanni Bellucci: giving Verdi, Wagner and Bellini the Liszt treatment at Dromore Yard in Aglish
Blackwater Valley Opera Festival, Dromore Yard, Aglish Co Waterford
What’s the fearless if not always musically tidy Italian pianist Giovanni Bellucci doing giving a solo recital at Dromore Yard in Aglish for the Blackwater Valley Opera Festival? Why, he’s playing opera on the piano. Well, not opera the way Cork pianist Charles Lynch was reputed to be able to do. Lynch, it is said, could sit down at the keyboard and play whole operas from memory. Bellucci is tackling numbers from popular 19th-century operas as reworked by Liszt, sometimes in the form of arrangements, sometimes in more fantastically Lisztian conceptions. Verdi, Wagner and Bellini all get the Liszt treatment, and room has been found for two non-operatic selections, the Ball and March to the Scaffold from Berlioz’s Symphonie fantastique.