Original review (German)
His Mazurkas carried away the house
Many roads lead to Chopin, and multiple traces originate from him. From the center of his pianistic creativity, Rafał Blechacz goes on searching these traces, to Bach and Mozart, and again to his Polish compatriot, relatively unknown Karol Szymanowski. With powerful gesture and enormous inner tension, Blechacz presents the monumental sonata No.1 by Szymanowski, which unifies many influences of the eclectic bundles and the fascinating late romanticism into one existence. The plethora of characters, urgent bass, cascading octaves and controlled fizzy arpeggios characterize the pianist with impressive clarity, compelling contrast between the bright "bell" sounds in the scherzo and the somber "Funeral March" motif in the final.
Chopin is in the heart of the 26-year old Pole, and since six years ago when he won the Chopin competition in Warsaw, he is truly regarded as the specialist. Also this evening in the Kammermusiksaal, the bright clarity of the As-Dur Polonaise boasts, whose octave fray always remains transparent – Blechacz doesn't have to pretend virtuosity with pedal fogs. The only real bravura appears from the four early Mazurkas Op 17; Blechacz facing with the fragile structure with colorful shades, violent outbursts, or thinning its tender melancholy mood.
|@Yokohama, Oct. 2010|
Blechacz has infinite amount of time in these miniatures, building huge melodic arcs, telling stories of great emotional range. His mature, personal, but not originality-addicted playing also characterizes Bach’s Partita in B flat by powerfully vibrant serenity whose heart is the very inward turned Sarabande. Playful contrast shimmers in the variations "Lison dormait," by 22-year-old Mozart, a typical piece of Rococo with all kinds of garlands and trills. Even with Debussy's "Pour le Piano" the confident style of the pianist is impressive, his toccata's layer of impressionistic sounds intoxicating.
In the storm of applause, the artist seems fragile and shy. But the public was rewarded by two encores: Chopin's mazurkas carried away the entire house.
by Isabel Herzfeld
On November 29 @10:00 (local time, EET) Radio Romania will broadcast the concert at Hamburg Laeiszhalle (Nov. 21, 2010) by NDR Sinfonieorchester, Conductor: Krzysztof Urbański,
Soloist: Rafał Blechacz who played Chopin's Concerto No.1 in E minor.
Radio Romania program site