WEST Wight Arts Association gave us another opportunity to hear an artiste before they zoom off into the musical stratosphere with the return appearance of the Romanian pianist, Alexandra Dariescu. 
One of the delights of this continuing series of concerts is so many performers are excellent communicators and speak about what they are going to play in knowledgeable and entertaining ways — and Ms Dariescu is definitely one of those.
She made a gentle entrance to her recital with Faure’s Nine Preludes and followed with the substantial Beethoven Piano Sonata op 10 no 2. Written when the composer was only 28, it is possible to hear he still had optimism although melancholia is there too.  Alexandra played not only with consummate technique but with beautiful interpretative skill which brought out every nuance of the four movements.
Many listeners shy away from Messiaen, believing his work would not be comprehensible but they would surely have changed their minds hearing this performance of two of his preludes. These are more melodic than expected and one can hear the influence of Debussy. These were played with style and grace and provided an interesting change of tempo before the next Beethoven, which was his Piano Sonata op 10 no 3.
Written immediately after the one played earlier, again there is a range of feeling from jolly to thoughtful to dawning sadness, and it ends surprisingly suddenly. 
Alexandra conveyed every emotion of this sonata with skill and the control only a very gifted pianist can provide.
It is a monstrous understatement to say her final piece required technical expertise, ability and interpretation. Percy Grainger arranged Tchaikovsky’s Waltz of the Flowers and played it himself as he too was a virtuoso. Had he heard Alexandra he would have agreed he had stiff competition.
She attacked this with great enthusiasm and panache, and it seemed as if the piano would burst into flames with such pianistic ardour. With the final flourish at the keyboard, the packed audience cheered to the rafters.