Marino Formenti’s recital was set in Segerstrom Hall‘s small Founders Hall, which may be the best piano room in all of Southern California. Works by Helmut Lachenmann (tone clusters atop tone clusters) and John Adams (the spellbinding Phrygian Gates, by now classic) began it; once again, as at Formenti’s local debut (at LACMA two years ago), the killer attraction was Jean Barraque‘s Sonata. It came in this time at just under 23 minutes -- as compared to 46:23 for the estimable Herbert Henck performance on ECM (which Formenti, in a post-concert Q&A, confessed to not liking). An aura of suspicion surrounds the work, and has since Andre Hodeir’s ecstatic exegesis in his long-out-of-print Since Debussy. Now I find myself lingering at Hodeir‘s doorstep; the Sonata is, I come to realize, a work like nothing else in the galaxy: a fusillade in which every shot moves in its own orbit. Formenti’s first performance left me awestruck by the playing; this time the music itself held us all in its grip -- all 200 or so of us in a room rendered magical. A single encore, the slow movement from Mozart‘s K. 332, was like a swallow of the best wine you’ve ever tasted.