Review of CD Debussy Szymanowski, written by Nuno Galopim, posted on sound + vision, a Portuguese website on May 13.
A new disk by Polish pianist Rafał Blechacz. This time interpreting pieces of Debussy and of his compatriot Szymanowski. The edition is of Deutsche Grammophon.
At age of 26, the Polish pianist Rafał Blechacz already surpassed that level in which young talents are usually labeled as "revelation" or "promise". He integrates the catalog of Deutsche Grammophon already for six years and has just released his fourth album - before he edited two works by Chopin and the third one with sonatas by Mozart, Haydn and Beethoven - which received honor of "Recording of the Month" in May edition of the Gramophone magazine. He had already won international awards between 2002 and 2004 and in 2005, he surprised by snatching victory in all categories of the edition of that year's 15th International Competition with the name of Frederic Chopin (also Polish). Two years later he finished his study at Feliks Nowowiejski Academy in Bydgoszcz and he began recording discography that in five years made him one of the great "voices" of the piano revealed in the twenty-first century.
The new album of Rafał Blechacz joins two works by Debussy (1862 - 1918) and three of the Polish Szymanowski (1882 - 1937) (sic.), the composer to whom the catalog of Deutsche Grammophon has given some attention in recent years through a series of recordings of orchestral music by Pierre Boulez.
All of them are compositions dating back to the beginning of the twentieth century and represent statements of composers’ personality. The pianist choices still pass for, in some cases, pieces that arrive to take competition. If in Debussy we can recognize the characteristics of personal approach of the pianist (and of the good piano, as he already mentioned), already in Szymanowski, still a name little known in Western Europe, he joins contemplation of interpretation with tone of discovery. As the critic in Gramophone refers, Szymanowski was never a popular composer nor his music a source of record sales. But the Sonata No. 1 has here a single window in Rafał Blechacz. And as they are making editions by Boulez, this disc can also make an important contribution to a change in the relation of concert programs and recordings with the music of this Polish composer.
Another review posted on a Greek website.
It seems to praise Blechacz's sincerity to music as well as technical excellence...♥
And a mini-review from UK