Peter Donohoe has long been renowned for building interesting programmes, but the menu the pianist served up for Birmingham Conservatoire on Tuesday was something quite remarkable.
Each work on offer represented its composer's first published opus, and allowed Donohoe some unexpected inclusions.
The Tchaikovsky, his Scherzo a la Russe and Impromptu, Op.1, proved astonishingly assured, but not in a way one associates with a composer so restrained in his maturity (though the opening movement does bring wisps of the Nutcracker's "Miniature Overture").
Well-judged silences here were also apparent in Donohoe's account of Prokofiev's Scriabinesque Sonata no.1, a thunderous, passionate work with few glimmers of his later, more ironic style.
Bartok's proud, noble Rhapsody takes the Lisztian template down lengthy byways, erupting at last into whooping, nail-splitting glissandi which seemed to hold no terrors for Donohoe.
To an almost Bachian clarity, judiciously weighted chording, pouncing articulation and an awesome spectrum of dynamics, all contributing to Donohoe's titanic pianism, he added profound intellectual vision in the all-Germanic second half.
Nowhere is this more needed than in Berg's hot-house Sonata, its innate feverishness tactfully controlled by Donohoe as his grip of the single movement's connecting threads led in an unbroken span to this wonderful music's resigned conclusion.
Finally came a thrilling tour de force, Brahms' C major Sonata fearlessly proclaiming its Beethovenian legacy with exultant Hammerklavier opening rhythms. Throughout this splendid piece we hear so many intimations of the fully-fledged Brahms, and Donohoe's strength and stamina seemed as unruffled at the end as when he had opened with Brahms' most venomous critic, Tchaikovsky.