Preludia - Unofficial website for Rafal Blechacz


Sep 19, 2010

Rafał Blechacz so far in 2010 Chopin year

Rafał Blechacz will tour in Japan with all Chopin program during Oct.3-Oct.23 period, giving nine recitals, including two special concerts of recital plus concerto in F minor.

On this occasion, I looked back his concert activities in the 2010 Chopin year in Japanese blog for Japanese fans of Blechacz who want to attend his recital.  This is its English version.
Each underlined link is basically connected to the relevant review article, unless otherwise specified.

Milan, Jan.
Rafał Blechacz began his Chopin year in Italy with a recital at Sala Verdi del Conservatorio in Milan, on Jan. 26. (see interview in Milan.) and second recital at Teatro Comunale, Treviso.  Then he performed Chopin's 2nd concerto with Orchestra of Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, directed by Andrey Boreyko for 4th consecutive day at Sala Santa Cecilia, Rome from Jan. 30 to Feb.2.  The large hall of Sana Cecilia, accomodating 2800 were full for all days.  (see PAP news.)

He then returned to his country and played the concerto in F minor for the Chopin Birthday Week Gala Concert on Feb.22 in Warsaw.
(See Video of rehearsal in Warsaw.)

Warsaw, Feb.22

The following day he left for US tour.  He gave four recitals there: NY., Washington DC, North Carolina and Georgia (Feb.26, 27, March 5, 6).  Washington Post highly praised his DC debut.
I was fortunate to see his recitals in NY and DC.  The performance was quite intense in my impression.

DC, Feb.27
During his stay in DC, he gave an interview to Performance Today (host: Fred Child) and offered demo performance to explain how middle voices are effectively incorporated in Chopin's mazurkas. (Listen to the interview.)

Alongside with the US tour, his CD Chopin Concertos was released in US and received a lot of favorable reviews (example).

In late March, Rafał Blechacz performed two recitals in Geneva and Zurich. One of the encores he selected was Chopin's nocturne in C sharp minor.  (see related blog posting.←this article received a lot of accesses, testimony to fans' high interest in this subject.)

On April 20, he gave a recital for Poland at his university (Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń).  Originally planed as a program for arts and science festival in Toruń, the recital was offered to the victims of the presidential plane crash that happened days before.  His music deeply touched people's heart.  (see video + comment by listeners.) He joined a discussion of philosophy after the recital. (see relevant article.)

Between late April through to middle May, he performed in prestigious halls such as Palais des Beaux Arts in Brussels (April 27) and Amsterdam Concertgebouw (May 9). After playing a recital for Schwetzinger SWR Festspielen in place of injured Nelson Freire on May 14, he was back to Poland and played Chopin Concerto in F minor in Łódź, May 20 and in Poznań, May 22 where he offered his performance fees for the victims of recent flood in the south.  (He didn't take fees in Toruń in April, either.)  (see interview in Poznań.)

"After the concert Blechacz noted that in Chopin's music there are a lot of pains and sorrows but also hope that in hard times currently experienced by the Poles is all very much needed".

Toruń, Apr. 20

In June, Rafał Blechacz performed recitals in Dortmund (June 12), Paris (Salle Pleyel on June 14) and Nohant (June 16) gathering a lot of acclaims.  He then played Concerto in F minor with Wiener Symphoniker in Bad Kissingen (June 27).

On July 13, Rafał gave a recital at Teatro dei Rozzi, Siena, after given the 27th International Prize of Accademia Musicale Chigiana. (see postings about the Prize.)  This very prestigious event was preceded by another prize giving to Blechacz,  Preis der deutschen Schallplattenkritik (Prize of the German Record Critics). (see postings about the Prize.)

Congratulations to our respected musician!!

San Sebastian, Aug.26
August was for him a month of music festivals.  He offered recital twice for Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival: Schleswig (August 5) and Lübeck (August 6). followed by another two recitals in Spain late August: San Sebastián for la Quincena (August 27) (see interview) and Valldemossa Chopin Festival (August 29).

And he is ready for Japan tour.  So far this year for me the most impressive was his playing Chopin's concerto in F minor for Chopin's Birthday in Warsaw on Feb.22. (We were able to hear it via webradio).  As is often discussed, his interpretation was a combination of deep maturity and youthful energy, and for me it was a source of awe and admiration.  The TV news (video) of the rehearsal conveys the atmosphere very well.  I was also deeply touched by Chopin's scherzo that I heard in US.

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