The most dazzling thing about the dazzling recital Russian pianist Denis Matsuev gave at Koerner Hall on Sunday evening was how he managed to be an artist for every sort of audience member.
Lovers of pianistic fireworks were given one of the most spectacular displays of technical prowess mixed with brilliant playing we’ve seen since, well, the last time Matsuev was in town a couple of seasons ago. And he didn’t appear to even break a sweat in the process.
The evening's splashy soloist was Denis Matsuev in Prokofiev's splashy First Piano Concerto. Winner of the 1998 Tchaikovsky competition, Matsuev has been nicknamed "the Siberian bear." Slightly bear-like he may be, but one with the fastest paws in the Arctic and maybe anywhere else.
He's a Russian banger, perhaps, but with glittering cascades of sound that impart terrific sparkle. And that meant nonstop fireworks in an early score Prokofiev had written to show himself off. Urbanski found an excellent balance for the orchestra, allowing Matsuev his prominence, but offering exquisite accompanimental phrasing.
In an unusual, but smart, move, Matsuev then followed the relatively short concerto with a piano solo — two selections from Stravinsky's "Petrushka," setting off a whole new round of amazing percussive fireworks. Nor was there any stopping him. Matsuev returned for an encore, his own outrageously and irresistibly flashy arrangement of "Largo al Factotum" from Rossini's "Barber of Seville."
Web site www.klassik.com published the following
review on Denis Matsuev’s concert in Baden-Baden (July, 23):
„Der Gewinner des renommierten
Tschaikowsky-Wettbewerbs 1998 hat sich mittlerweile insbesondere als Interpret
des russischen Repertoires einen Namen gemacht.
Er verfügt über eine pianistische
Technik, deren Umschreibung als virtuos fast untertrieben ist. Das
Faszinierendste an seinem Spiel ist jedoch, wie er diese technischen
Fähigkeiten dazu einsetzt, Musik zu gestalten, zu formen, manchmal regelrecht
Wie bei fast allen originaren Kunstlern
spaltet Mikhail Pletnev die Kritikerzunft: Die einen bewundern seine hochindividuellen
Interpretationen, die anderen lehnen ihn als radikal-manierirten Musiker
“The Daily Express” has published the following review on the “Matsuev.
Liszt” album: “The melodic structure and beauty of Liszt’s
approach to piano composition is so impressive in these fluent recordings of
his piano concertos 1 and 2. The brilliant Russian pianist
Denis Matsuev explores the exquisite twists and turns of the works with an
often enthralling fluency”.
Norman Lebrecht, the famous music expert, critic and writer, the author of “Who killed classical music” bestseller, has listened to the latest Denis Matsuev’s release and named it “the CD of the week”. On this CD Denis and the Mariinsky orchestra headed by Valery Gergiev perform Shostakovich, Piano concerto no.1 and no.2 and also Shchedrin, Piano concerto no.5. Norman Lebrecht states in his review that Matsuev managed to come close to the solution of the Shostakovich’s concertos puzzle.
Per chi non lo conosceva ancora il pianista russo Denis Matsuev si e rivelato gran virtuoso non sollo nella brillante interpretazione di Rachmaninov, ma nei due bis a dir poco civettuoli. Un ( impercettibile) carillon di Lyadov, seguito da un violento Grieg. Ma Grieg sapeva essere davvero cosi violento?