Ponce and Granados, and Albeniz…these are not names that are evocative of a snow day in Washington DC. Yet, we had all of these last night when Rupert Boyd came to play. It was clear from the first pieces, new compositions from Australia by the composer Philip Houghton, that we were in for a treat. These pieces with the curious titles were delightful and rich in colors and expression…More Phillip Houghton, please!
Pressing on, the Folias Variations of Manuel Ponce highlighted both the profound depth of the great Mexican composer and and the amazing virtuosity of Rupert Boyd. I was asked at intermission if these works were difficult to play. What a question! “Not unless you really want to play them well, with no mistakes and with a great deal of musicality, tone, expressiveness and grace,” I replied. I probably need to learn how to just say, “Those were extremely difficult and he played them very, very well.”
So, we find ourselves with Rupert playing an impressive program and charming the socks off the audience…(not really their socks, that’s just an expression). By the time he got to the Valses Poeticos by Enrique Granados, the die was cast. The audience was hooked on his great warmth and charm, technique and gentle musicality. The standing ovation and bravos filled the hall, making the harsh realities of the snow and ice forgotten, just for the moment.
See the WASHINGTON POST review on Rupert Boyd’s concert.