Cuban pianist Jorge Luis Prats made quite a name for himself 30 years ago as an artist of great promise, then virtually disappeared. It turns out he chose to remain at home with his family rather than embark on a world adventure that would have put him in a semi-exile situation.
He is back after all this time with touring and a rather stunning recital recording, Live in Zaragoza (Decca 00289 478 2732).
The self-imposed seclusion has not diminished his talents. He embarks on a program of Spanish and Spanish-American classics with dash and a beautiful flamboyance fitting to the music. The two disks cover his renditions of Granados's "Goyescas", Villa-Lobos's "Bachiana brasileira no. 4 for piano," and then a second disk of encores covering Farinas's "Alta Gracia," Cervantes's "Danzas cubanas," and Lecuona's "Malaguena."
He has a beautifully dynamic rubato style, a flair for dance rhythms, a wonderful touch and an interpretive way with the pieces that brings out the salient aspects of each passage with a poetic grace.
This is bravura pianism from start to finish. Welcome back, Maestro Prats.