Piano playing like you have never heard

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Pianist Leslie Howard and comedian and musician Rainer Hersch offer contrasting pleasures in separate events on the final Friday of the Petworth Festival (July 29).

In Franz Liszt’s centenary year, the Petworth Festival welcomes back Leslie Howard, a pianist who has an extraordinary claim to fame, having accomplished a feat unequalled by any solo artist in recording history - a 97 CD survey of the complete piano music of Franz Liszt.

Accomplished within 14 years, Howard’s survey encompasses 300-plus world premieres, including works prepared from Liszt’s still unpublished manuscripts, and works unheard since Liszt’s lifetime.

For Petworth, in addition to repertoire by Liszt, Leslie Howard also performs music by Rachmaninov including his Sonata no. 2 in B flat minor, opus 36 (St Mary’s Church, 7.30pm).

Meanwhile the same night, Rainer Hersch offers All Classical Music Explained (Leconfield Hall, Petworth, 7.45pm).

In the show, Rainer turns his comic skills to those awkward questions such as: “Why is organ music so boring?”; “How can I play a musical instrument without practising?”; “What do conductors actually do?”. From playing the recorder to Grand Opera, it’s all here plus piano playing like you have never heard, he promises.

Tickets on 01798 344576.