Eurovision Young Musicians 2018: Semi-Final 3 – Hungary, Greece and Israel

The biennial Eurovision Young Musician competition got underway yesterday. 18 musicians slogging it out for the top prize, the final at Edinburgh’s Usher Hall on Thursday next week.

I watched Semi-Final 2 and 3 back on YouTube this morning. Two definite finalist emerges from this semi-final and one possible winner. See below.

Hungary – Máté Bencze, saxophone

Demersseman Fantasy on an original theme
JS Bach Allegro from Sonata in g minor BVWV 1020
Iturralde Pequeña Czarda

Has great dramatic range in the first piece – nimble shifts of tone and dynamic, but there are times when it feels like he’s playing to himself. Great support – maintains a line rather beautifully. More engaging than the flautist. Really opens up in the Bach – great precision and delicacy. Works hard in the third piece and maintains that same love of dramatic dynamic shift. This performance has grown on me. Possible finalist.

Greece – Athanasios Tzanetakis, guitar

Kellner Fantasia in d minor
Walton Bagatelle No 3 & 5 from Five Bagatelles for Guitar
Llobet Variaciones Sobre un Tema de Fernando Sor

Remarkable. Compelling. Incredibly still. Intimate feel. The detail is stunning. Finalist.

Israel – Tamir Naaman-Pery, cello

Popper Hungarian Rhapsody Op 68
Cassado – Preludio-Fantasia from Suite for Cello

Strong spirited playing with a much louder instrument. He’s someone I want to hear play more. He’s not my favourite but he is terribly good. Finalist.

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