4th September 2022, Singapore – Sir Stephen Hough recently returned to Singapore for a solo recital, and a concerto performance with the professional chamber group reSound Collective.

Sir Stephen played Brahms’ Second Piano Concerto – a 4-movement work playing close to 50 minutes. 

Sir Stephen sat down for a pre-concert chat that was hosted by Mr Mervin Beng, Chairman of Resound Collective Limited.


A brief background on the piano concerto, Brahms began composing the piece in 1878 and completed it in 1881 while he was in Pressbaum near Vienna. It took him three years to work on this concerto. He wrote to Clara Schumann: “I want to tell you that I have written a very small piano concerto with a very small and pretty scherzo.” Ironically, he was describing a huge piece that is regarded as the longest, most complex piano concertos written to that date. The public premiere of the concerto was an immediate success in November 1881, with Brahms as soloist with the Budapest Philharmonic Orchestra.

Sir Stephen certainly lived up to the renown of this concerto’s premiere over 140 years ago, conceived like a symphony, it has been described as a “concerto against the piano”, putting a solo instrument – the Bechstein D282 Concert Grand Piano for this performance, whose resonant tone is perfect for any concert hall – up against the power of an orchestra.

Sir Stephen with Principal cellist James Ng playing through the slow movement of Brahms’ Second Piano Concerto

There was certainly nothing to fear, as Sir Hough displayed a great sense of reassurance and expertly conquered every challenge the piece presented in his path with his finesse and masterful skill.

The reSound Collective performed Bartok’s Divertimento For Strings led by former SSO concert master Igor Yuzefovich.

All through the concerto, the players of re:Sound supported Sir Stephen throughout the piece, and even presented their own impressive showcase in Bartok’s Divertimento For Strings, Led by violinist and former SSO concert master Igor Yuzefovich. Bartok ironically named his Divertimento, although named after the Classical divertimento form, it is not a light and entertaining work as the name suggests.

The Evening was truly a spectacular performance by both Hough and the reSound Collective, and further distinguishes Sir Stepen Hough as one of the most distinctive artists of this generation.


Photo Credits: Resound/ Joel Chew