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Music Reviews : Pianist Barone in Recital at Loyola Marymount

February 22, 1988|DANIEL CARIAGA

At the end of his eclectic recital, Friday night in Murphy Hall at Loyola Marymount University, Marcantonio Barone finally made a personal statement.

It was Chopin's C-major Mazurka, Opus 24, No. 2, played as Barone's single encore, and it showed the young pianist's ability to spin out a legato line, to communicate from the piano directly to his audience and to integrate his thoughts in a cogent manner. A sense of conversation, unforced and unself-conscious, marked this brief moment.

What had come before had been mostly promising, not completely accomplished, the work of a very gifted and diligent postgraduate pianist still not assured in his own musical personality.

Most impressive, until the Mazurka, were another Chopin piece, the C-sharp-minor Scherzo, given an extrovert and virtuosic reading to open the recital, and Mussorgsky's "Pictures at an Exhibition," which closed it--also large-boned, nicely detailed and technically impeccable. But mostly faceless.

Forays into Beethoven (the E-major Sonata, Opus 14, No. 1); Mozart (the Fantasia in D minor and the Rondo in D), and Bach (the G-major French Suite) found the capable young musician digitally apt, stylistically aware. True conviction and real engagement arrived only after the program proper had ended.

The admirable piano series on the Westchester campus--Murphy Hall is an exceptional hall for a keyboard series, with first-class instruments and an intimate ambience--continues Friday with a rare Southern California appearance by Ralph Votapek, and recitals, March 18 and April 22, by Walter Ponce and Bradley Rohr, respectively.

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