“The sympathetic pianist in this recording, Duncan Honeybourne…Cooke’s style, most affecting in lyrical mood, breathes something of that luxuriant Romanticism with which we are now much more familiar in the piano music of York Bowen…Honeybourne, with his delicate chemistry of touch and arm weight, persuasively coaxes out Cooke’s personal sense of poetry and gentle humour.”

Gramophone

“[A Forgotten English Romantic] is superbly presented in every way. The liner-notes, written by Duncan Honeybourne, are excellent, informative and interesting. The standard of playing is of the highest order; the recording is outstanding.”

MusicWeb International (Recording of the Year)

“Instantly claims an eminent place in the annals of British recorded music. The performances catch both the storm and crash of these pieces, their willowy poetry, whimsical wit and flickering dappled fantasy. Cooke is fortunate in having found such a champion.”

MusicWeb International (Recording of the Year)

“A programme that enchants, disarms and whets the appetite for more in equal measure.…Duncan Honeybourne’s playing is astonishingly affectionate, but never saccharine, something that rescues pieces like Rosenthal’s Variations on a Nursery Rhyme from the salon. Stanford’s Ballade in G minor presents some of the most serious of intent music on the disc, distinctly Lisztian in breadth and gesture. Honeybourne plays it with suave confidence.”

International Piano

“Duncan Honeybourne identifies completely with all this music and plays it with much feeling. He is well recorded and provides highly illuminating and extensive notes. A set not to be missed by all lovers of English music.”

Gramophone

“There are gorgeous things here, such as Moeran's Two Folksong Arrangements and Vaughan Williams' The Lake in the Mountains. Hard to imagine better performances.”

BBC Music Magazine on E. J. Moeran: The Complete Solo Piano Music (**** excellent rating)

“Honeybourne is in a class of his own, and his account of the Theme and Variations (Moeran’s most substantial piano work) is unsurpassed on disc. I would rate this new two CD set as the best complete recording of Moeran’s piano output.”

MusicWeb International

“A highly pleasurable experience. It is immediately clear that Honeybourne has much to offer in this repertoire.”

International Record Review

"A "must-have" for collectors of English piano music, very well played by Duncan Honeybourne."

Musical Opinion 

“What a find! The performance of this delicious work is beyond praise; a truly sparkling rendition.”

MusicWeb International

“Honeybourne is a strong advocate of Stalham River, probably Moeran's finest piano work, allowing it to wend its way, for the most part tranquilly, but adds terrific intensity and touches of panache where needed. Of the other Moeran pieces I am particularly fond of Folk Story and Toccata, in which Honeybourne generates a powerful and carefully directed performance. Honeybourne's performance of Howells's Sonatina is most persuasive, while his version of Swaffield's Rapallo is captivatingly caught. Fleischmann's Suite for Piano really captured my imagination from the opening bars and left me wondering why on earth it has not become a more established work. Honeybourne's notes are comprehensively and thought-provokingly written.”

International Record Review

“This absorbing two CD set is therefore especially valuable and it has two points strongly in its favour; firstly the persuasive advocacy of Duncan Honeybourne – who clearly loves this music); and secondly the placing of Moeran’s piano works within the broader context of the English and Irish keyboard writing of the time. The results are illuminating and have certainly led me to rethink my attitude to this neglected music.”

MusicWeb International

“Moeran is known now, if at all, for his Symphony in G minor which sounds very like Vaughan Williams. That goes for Moeran's piano music as well, so if that lyrical, English folk-infused sound world is one you like to visit, then this double CD will bring much pleasure. You'll certainly enjoy the Two Folksong Arrangements, Stalham River and On a May Morning, for example. This set also includes works by Moeran's English and Irish contemporaries so there's a chance to compare Moeran's work with Vaughan Williams. His The Lake in the Mountains is here, and pieces by Baines, Pitfield, Swaffield and Fleischmann, some of whose works get world premiere recordings. Birmingham Conservatoire graduate Duncan Honeybourne's performances are eloquent and never twee (a danger in this repertoire). Moeran's non-folksy Toccata, arguably his best solo piano piece, is very deftly played — slower than Eric Parkin (on a Lyrita CD) but persuasively so.”

The Birmingham Post

"Entitled By Cotswold, Severn and Wye, a sequence of organ music celebrating (Holst and Gloucestershire composers) was devised and played by Duncan Honeybourne. No easy task, given the modest scope of the "rustic" organ, but Honeybourne chose his programme resourcefully and handled the little instrument with sensitivity, finding expressive qualities others might have missed."

The Sunday Telegraph, September 2013

“Honeybourne is a natural, knowledgeable and engaging communicator who addresses his audience between the solos. When this quality is coupled with pianism of rarefied emotions and storming virtuosity we know we are in the presence of a young pianist of whom we will hear a great deal more. Concert promoters and record companies should be seeking him out... Honeybourne’s (Bridge Piano Sonata) was a great performance. The work’s complexities and dark arbours were relentlessly explored. Every chord was relished in its weighting, sustaining and blend.”

MusicWeb International, May 2014

“The superbly athletic Duncan Honeybourne, whose CDs of British piano music have served to revive the fortunes of many neglected scores and composers”

MusicWeb International, May 2014

Despite dreadful weather, our intrepid members made the journey to The Lights Theatre to see pianist Duncan Honeybourne in concert. This eagerly awaited artist did not disappoint. The evening began with Beethoven’s Sonata in E minor. Duncan caught the mood immediately. Wonderful, contrasting sounds between both movements were delightful. Liszt’s Sonnetto 104 del Petrarca tells the story of Petrarch’s tangled feelings for an unattainable and impossible love. Duncan’s playing brought forth all the emotions Petrarch experienced from initially trying to deny his feelings followed by longing, passion and dismay. Next, before the interval, Schumann’s Waldszenen (Forest Scenes), consisting of nine pieces, took everyone in the auditorium on a breathless journey of anticipation, trepidation, peaceful beautiful scenes, immediately changing to the dramatic, followed by hearty songs and laughter and reluctant farewells. Duncan’s unique presentation draws the audience into his world of music. The depth of feeling this immensely talented pianist puts into each note ensures that the listener is treated to an uplifting and rewarding musical experience. The second half of the concert began with Fleischmann’s Suite for Piano. Published under a pseudonym, Maurice Ronan, Fleischmann displayed his Irish roots with pride. Once again, Duncan accurately portrayed Fleischmann’s strong Celtic allegiance to his country through music, some of which was dark and thoughtful, interspersed with optimistic folk music, concluding with a typically cheerful, jaunty jig. Chopin’s Sonata in B Minor opened with a dramatic first movement, followed by a sparkling E flat major Scherzo. The brilliant Largo was followed by a magnificent triumphant Finale. Throughout the evening Duncan’s interesting and informative narrative and obvious passion for his craft could not help but transfer his enthusiasm to the audience, not least because of his warm, engaging, personality. Following prolonged and enthusiastic applause at the end of the concert from the hugely appreciative audience, Duncan delighted us all even further with a beautiful rendition of Bach’s Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring, guaranteed to send everyone home with smiles on their faces.

Andover Music Club, 24 January 2013

“Duncan Honeybourne’s technique can face most technical challenges... the balance between golden-bloomed melody and rippling accompaniment was always beautifully judged.”

The Birmingham Post

“Honeybourne played with energy and verve and formidable technique.”

Seen and Heard International (MusicWeb) (Rachmaninov Second Piano Concerto in South Wales)

“Duncan Honeybourne was the soloist, his voice-leading revelatory, his tone rich and full. And he knows how to listen to the orchestra.”

The Birmingham Post (Schumann Piano Concerto at CBSO Centre)

“...gave a technically-assured performance of this virtuoso work, the Emperor Concerto, surmounting its difficulties with ease.”

Central Somerset Gazette

“The Mozart Concerto for Two Pianos was something else; it is a lean astringent in-joke, using a pair of them new-fangled pianos in the aural equivalent of a blind wine tasting. The two soloists were Finghin Collins and Duncan Honeybourne. Speaking afterwards, John O’Conor said that you could never tell which pianist was playing, and yes, he spoke truly. Given that the pair hadn’t met a week before, it was a tribute both to them and to the conductor. Everyone achieved the sense of an elegant and witty conversation, and the cadenza in the last movement with its 'ralls' worked very well.”

Classical Ireland

“Exceptionally fine accompaniment from the highly regarded pianist Duncan Honeybourne. He proved an impressive soloist in Liszt’s transcription of Schumann’s song Widmung; his masterly skills received a tremendous ovation.”

Grimsby Telegraph

“From the compelling opening of Bax’s Second Piano Sonata to its gentle conclusion, Honeybourne’s playing was atmospheric, at times stormy, at others delicately fluid, but never losing sight of the work’s structure. In Brahms’ Handel Variations the theme was crisply announced, and every variation assured and well characterised, leading authoritatively to the weighty final fugue. In a committed performance of Baines’ Seven Preludes, Honeybourne was a persuasive advocate for this rarely-heard composer. Chopin’s Third Sonata was given a powerful and poetic performance; the beautifully controlled Largo provided a quiet interlude before the exhilarating finale. Chopin’s Tarantelle was the generous encore which concluded a sincere and insightful performance.”

Derby Evening Telegraph  (full text)

“Duncan Honeybourne performed a masterly solo piano recital for Seaton and District Music Club in Seaton Town Hall. His sense of poise, rhythm, contrapuntal phrasing and exquisite variety of touch brought the club’s Steinway grand piano to life. Previously unheard-of composers were championed in an exhilarating and refreshingly energetic, enthusiastic style of performance. Complex rhythmical passages of intense expression were matched by moments of quiet, reflective scarcity of notes. It wasn’t just his fingers, but his whole being, that seemed to be necessarily involved in this wonderful performance. The hundred or so members and visitors present were treated to a memorable confirmation that musical talent resident here in the South west is equal to the best this country has to offer. This quality of musical enjoyment always leaves one wanting more.”

East Devon Midweek Herald

“Piano virtuoso Duncan Honeybourne performed Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto no. 2 in C minor with all the authority and passion that the work deserves.”

Dorset Echo

“As he played Schumann’s Fantasy and the rarely played Sonata Romantica by Nicolas Medtner, Duncan Honeybourne’s talent, passion, commitment and absolute command of the keyboard were beyond question. Words such as poised, beautiful, invigorating and tender come to mind when he plays Schumann, while his interpretation of Medtner was romantic, boisterous, light and playful.”

Western Gazette

“The arrival of two gifted young pianists for Mozart’s Double Concerto. Irishman Finghin Collins and Englishman Duncan Honeybourne had had less than a week to create a remarkable partnership, fluent, alert and always appreciative of the work’s wonders. It was revealing to note different tonal colourings between the two pianists, the interchange of ideas was impressive.”

The Birmingham Post

“Honeybourne’s playing was wholly compelling.”

Loughborough Echo

“Duncan Honeybourne’s display as a piano virtuoso was especially notable… Honeybourne gave a masterly performance of Brahms’ Sonata in F minor, leaving the audience eager for more.. The programme ended with Medtner’s Sonata Romantica, when another commanding performance was enjoyed, from the tuneful Romanza, through a Scherzo played at breakneck speed, to the Finale, which enveloped the room. Before going home several people expressed a wish that Honeybourne will make a return visit. I second that.”

Kidderminster Times (Kidderminster Music Society recital)

“The two highly gifted soloists, Margaret Newman and Duncan Honeybourne, formed a beautifully-crafted partnership for their large-scale recital featuring six composers. The enthusiastic applause by the audience encouraged the soloists, who had played with so much excitement and warmth, to return for a short encore to bring the evening to an enjoyable and memorable climax.”

Birmingham Jewish Recorder

“Beethoven’s big C minor Violin Sonata warmed into a reading with wonderful depth of tone and well-developed feel for phrasing and dynamic contrast.”

The Birmingham Post

“Sharon McKinley and her equally accomplished pianist Duncan Honeybourne, their ensemble based on much mutual respect and understanding, gave this fine piece a memorable reading.”

The Birmingham Post (Bridge Cello Sonata)

“In a world almost overloaded with excellent young pianists, it takes something extra to stand out. Duncan Honeybourne possesses not only a fine technical ability and intelligent musicality – he also has a compellingly original personality and a highly articulate manner that makes his performances memorable and special. Here is a different pianist with something new to say. Listen to him!”

John York, Columnist/Reviewer Piano magazine and Professor of Piano, Guildhall School of Music & Drama

“Duncan Honeybourne gave what can only be described as an ideal performance. His performance was the centrepiece of an excellent recital, which also gave us Schumann’s Waldszenen and Fantasy, the latter in particular highly expressive. The other high-point in the programme was a rare opportunity to hear Medtner’s Sonata Romantica.”

British Music Society News, September 2003 (UK premiere of Andrew Downes’ Piano Sonata no.2 at Wednesbury Art Gallery)

“A highly original programme played by a very talented and wonderfully original pianist who will carry the 'Golden Age' into the future. Marvellous!”

Richard Herriot, pianist and Artistic Adviser to the BBC Radio Leeds Lunchtime Concerts at the Wakefield Theatre Royal and Opera House, West Yorkshire,

“On Friday night, after Duncan Honeybourne’s performance of his Piano Sonata no.1, composer John Joubert commented: 'That was exactly right' – praise indeed. And that phrase sums up the entire programme, which was well-balanced, mixed between popular and the less known works, and played superbly. As on his previous visit, Mr Honeybourne waived the chance of a 'warm-up', just sat down and got on with a demonstration of how to play the piano. We first were treated to Grieg’s delightful Wedding Day at Troldhaugen, a great start to any programme. Then came the Joubert work, which sounded very difficult to play, and Mr Honeybourne was not at all phased by the presence of the Music Society’s patron, from the reflective opening, through the dramatic middle passage, and gentle ending. The first half ended with the Brahms Handel Variations, where again the pianist brilliantly illustrated the variations in style, tone and tempo. The second half began with the Seven Preludes by William Baines. The final item on the programme was the sublime Piano Sonata no.3 in B minor by Chopin, where Mr Honeybourne again delighted.”

Kidderminster Times, (Kidderminster Music Society recital) (full text)

“Schumann’s Piano Concerto, brilliantly played by the well-known professional soloist Duncan Honeybourne.”

Dorset Echo

“I just wanted to thank you again for your splendid performance of my Second Piano Sonata last night. It was a tremendously heartening experience to hear it played with such conviction and concentration. I shall now tackle the last movement of Sonata no. 3 with renewed confidence and vigour! Meanwhile thanks again for a memorable and impressive performance.”

letter, after a recital, from the composer John Joubert, whose Piano Sonata no.3 was written for Duncan Honeybourne

“Pianist Duncan Honeybourne played Downes’ powerful Hardy-inspired Second Sonata without a hint of self-consciousness. In this work short, contrasted passages yield to a sense of quiet exaltation, but so naturally that a flashy performance is unnecessary. With unaffected and sincere playing, the music speaks eloquently for itself; humane, optimistic and often extremely beautiful. Honeybourne immersed himself completely in Downes’ musical language. A composer couldn’t ask for a more handsome tribute.”

The Birmingham Post