Imogen Cooper

News & Press

  • Classical Source

    02 June 2015

    Live reviews

    Robert’s F sharp minor Piano Sonata is anything but carefree, a substantial and daunting piece presenting a formidable technical and interpretative challenge. Cooper was fully its equal, dealing with the fire and brimstone of the opening with great flair and musicality. At all times her rubato was superbly judged, not least in a heart-stopping shift of keys towards the end of the first movement, exquisitely timed. After the sublime ‘Aria’, there were further wonderful touches in the scherzo, Cooper seemingly directing an imagined stage performance. Indeed, the orchestral sonorities of this piece were a frequent feature, the pianist shaping the lines so that the inner ear could detect horns and woodwinds in some of the more strident moments of the trio. As the finale took hold so too did an expressive freedom, the exploratory nature of Schumann’s writing laid out clearly in what is ultimately a fantasia, but one that becomes far more focused than its dimensions imply. Thus Imogen Cooper led us through to a triumphant coda, after which an encore would have been superfluous.

    Ben Hogwood, Classical Source, June 02

  • Seattle Times

    01 May 2015

    Live reviews

    Cooper herself is an exemplary example of how Mozart is best played today, discerning and expressing every nuance without overdoing it, portraying emotion with restraint, and introspection lightly carried though clearly present. The lighthearted charm of the first and last movements of No. 17 were contrasted with that restraint and introspection in the slow movement, where the orchestra gave light accompaniment to the outward serenity combined with inner depth of Cooper’s playing.

    Philippa Kiraly, The Seattle Times

  • The Plain Dealer

    25 April 2015

    Live reviews

    Beyond clear, Cooper’s playing was spotless, scrubbed free of even of the faintest blemish. Add to this a trace of impulsiveness, heaps of drama and contrast, and the silkiest legato phrasing imaginable. Quicker tempos might have been welcome, but her conversations with clarinet and bassoon in the Largo were not passages one wanted rushed.

    Zachary Lewis, The Plain Dealer, April 25

  • The Arts Desk

    06 September 2013

    Live reviews

    Imogen Cooper… can always be relied upon to draw you in to the light-fading of late Schubert. Sure enough, after the startling summons of the C minor sonata D958, she was achieving all her usual subtle, inscaped wonders in the second subject, shifting colour with the composer’s miraculous enharmonic key changes. Read full review

    David Nice, The Arts Desk

  • The Independent

    23 April 2013

    Live reviews

    But as Imogen Cooper delivered it with Ivan Fischer and the Budapest Festival Orchestra, you sensed Beethoven in every bar as it wove in motifs from the first movement and turned them upside down and inside out.

    And if Cooper rounded it off with a smile, that fitted too, because her interpretation of the work as a whole was as spirited an account as I have ever heard. While the slow movement had a singing warmth, the opening Allegro became an exemplary display of pellucid passage-work and subtly-shaded perspectives; the concluding Rondo – in which Beethoven plays tricks with the listener’s expectations – was mercurial from start to finish. Read full article

    Michael Church, The Independent