Nicholas Yonge Society

International Chamber Music in Lewes

Leon McCawley

22 March 2024
Haydn Sonata No. 34 in D major, Hob. XVI/33
Tchaikovsky Song of the Lark
Autumn Song from The Seasons Op. 37a 
Prokofiev Sonata No. 2 in D minor, Op. 14
Chopin Impromptu No. 1 in A flat major, Op. 29
Schubert Four Impromptus, D 935

It is 21 years since the brilliant pianist Leon McCawley last visited Lewes, and after his latest recital here on March 22 many members must surely wish that the next time interval will be shorter. Starting out with Haydn’s Sonata 34, played in strict time, he moved to the moody romanticism of Tchaikovsky’s lesser-known The Seasons. The first half ended with an explosive virtuoso performance of Prokofiev’s Sonata number 2. Written when he was 21, this had all the brio, daring and impulsiveness of an already
fully self-assured young genius.

But it was in Schubert’s Four Impromptus after the interval that Leon drew all his skills together most memorably in a performance that left a packed audience purring with pleasure. This wonderful music, moving from joy to melancholy and back again, was beautifully performed by this fine musician playing for us at the very top of his game. 

Our season could not have ended on a higher note.

Review​er: Nicholas Tucker

Photograp​her: David James