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Andras Schiff. Piano. Live
By Dmitry Kitayenko, Moscow Radio Symphony Orchestra, and Andras Schiff. By Alexander Pirumov, Franz Liszt (1811-1886), Johannes Brahms (1833-1897), Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky (1840-1893), Sergei Rachmaninoff (1873-1943), Sergei Prokofiev (1891-1953), and Dmitri Shostakovich (1906-1975). Country of Origin: Russia. Classical. CD (2 discs). Published by Melodiya (NX.MELCD1002386).
Item Number: NX.MELCD1002386
One of the most prominent pianists of modern times, Andras Schiff nevertheless does not belong to the so-called competition format. The musician who earned the pedestal of philosopher pianist, "a representative of intellectual musical tradition in its high apprehension," has never had virtuosity, sonic lustre and visual artistry in his sphere of interests. However, the live recordings of the then 21-year-old Hungarian are of unquestionable interest. Soviet music critic Leonid Gakkel described his impressions of Schiff's performance in the following way. "From his very first note at the competition Schiff struck me with the vigour of his performance, and that was vigour of the highest festivityâ€¦ What a touch on the piano, what a charge of energy, what burning fingers! Ultimate activity of a creating spirit at each moment of playingâ€¦" At the competition, Schiff played piano works by rachmaninoff, Liszt, Prokofiev and Shostakovich, variation cycles and concertos by Tchaikovsky and Brahms. In the opinion of Yevgeny Malinin, a competent judge and professor of the Moscow Conservatory, Schiff "read music without a drop of willfulness: he lived in and with it." The panel gave him only the fourth prize. However, it wouldn't be an overstatement to say that it was the Tchaikovsky Competition that brought the first significant success and international repute to the outstanding pianist.