R E V I E W S  &  A R T I C L E S

Megan Sterling and Kristian Chong
Elder Hall Lunch Hour Series 2013

 

Peter Burdon, The Advertiser

 

Elder Hall, University of Adelaide

Friday, August 16 2013

 

The musical pairing of flautist Megan Sterling and pianist Kristian Chong is a good thing for lovers of chamber music. What brilliance Sterling brings to her craft, and what skill and sensitivity in Chong's superlative, intelligent pianism. Three very substantial works and a bon bon made for a great program in the astonishingly consistent Elder Hall lunchtime series.

 

First up, the extravagant Grande Fantasie sur Mignon by Frenchman Paul Taffanel, romantic to the point of succulence and not to every taste, but a showpiece, nonetheless. Carl Vine's magnificent Sonata for Flute and Piano was given a magnificent performance. The lively outer movements had verve and vigour, and the central movement a pure, unwavering tone in the many long phrases that give this work a very spacious feel. Saint-Saëns Romance for Flute and Piano is an altogether less cloying romantic diversion, gorgeously melodic and deceptively simple for it.
 

The discovery of the day was American Lowell Liebermann's Sonata for Flute and Piano. An elegiac opening is followed by a furious and exciting presto that dazzles without being ostentatious. Chong was on fire, his right hand an ostinato blur as the left dove downwards in climactic cadence after cadence, while Sterling took her instrument to dizzy heights. The ABC's microphones were happily present, and here's to many broadcasts to come.