Next Concerts

Aug 04 2018

Aurora Orchestra

Saffron Walden - Saffron Hall

With Nicholas Collon (conductor)

  • Shostakovich Concerto No.2

Aug 06 2018

BBC Proms at Royal Albert Hall

London, United Kingdom - Royal Albert Hall

Aurora Orchestra
With Nicholas Collon (conductor)

  • Shostakovich Piano Concerto No.2

REVIEWS

May 27 2015

Barbican début with Sakari Oramo and BBC Symphony Orchestra

“Kozhukhin’s performance was so natural and musical that he allowed the music to speak on its own terms. The mix of strength and sensitivity in his playing was ideal. In the first movement he was particularly impressive in the great build up to the central climax and the intensity of the climax itself was spine tingling. The wind down from here to the hasty end of the movement was particularly touching and ambiguous… For once the work came across as a satisfying whole, equal to and in many ways more sophisticated than the earlier concerti.”
Bachtrack, May 2015

“This work finds in Denis Kozhukhin a champion of the first order. One admires the power of his touch, his technical precision and his subtle musicality.”
ResMusica, May 2015

“The slow-movement intermezzo… shimmered with velvet-textured colours, only to yield to the most thrilling of all Rachmaninov’s finales before the last of the Symphonic Dances. And the encore, Gluck’s “Dance of the Blessed Spirits” from Orfeo ed Euridice as simply transcribed by Giovanni Sgambati, was perfect: sustained song, poetry which Kozhukhin wielded no less than Rachmaninov the pianist in a celebrated recording to take us slowly into a metaphysical zone.”
Arts Desk, May 2015

Apr 15 2015

Berlin Philharmonie, Brahms

“Kozhukhin shows that he is rightly being counted amongst the most promising talents… It’s all about the music for him. There is no ounce of smugness or show! Denis Kozhukhin makes music and nothing else and he does it with a stupendous technique and a pleasantly sensual, but never sweetly feeling for romance. He is like a young lion with power, but also with velvety paws. He lets Brahms’s 7 Fantasies fluoresce like a dance and then exhales the last fantasy as Brahms would have wished. The young musician has the notes and the phrasing not only in his fingers, but also in his heart and mind. If he continues on this path, he’ll be a star.”
Der Neue Merker, April 2015

“Entirely consistent was Denis Kozhukhin’s account of Johannes Brahms’s Fantasies for piano which he performed self-confidently and with a full-bodied energetic touch: he combines power, clarity and an impressively masterful sense of form with the ability to express even the most tender of emotions without any sentimentality.
The equally attentive and respectful dialogue between Kremer and Kozhukhin benefits César
Franck’s violin sonata: imperative in its form and bathed in warm, heavy colours by the violin, it turns into the hoped-for celebration.”
Der Tagesspiegel, April 2015

“A self-confident pianist who is also able to listen as was demonstrated later in the Franck
sonata… Kozhukhin’s playing was sensual and full of colours.”
RBB Kultur, April 2015

“Kozhukhin presented himself in Berlin with an exquisitely sensitive shaping of the Brahms Fantasies Op.116, the autumnal note of which he struck with a maturity quite astonishing for his age.”
Die Presse, April 2015

Feb 27 2015

A wonderfully empathetic and intelligent ‘piano whisperer’

Denis Kozhukhin proves himself here to be a wonderfully empathetic and intelligent ‘piano whisperer’. … Mere effects are not his thing, something which Kozhukhin makes clear from the very first note. His touch, his articulation – all is sensitively balanced and displays an almost crystalline precision. This is combined with an exceptionally discriminating and subtle use of pedal, which at most adds nuance to the sound colours of the Haydn sonatas’ finely woven motif progressions, but without blurring them… Denis Kozhukhin delights with his playing of Haydn where every detail is individually illuminated despite a variety of emphases and colours.

BR Klassik, February 2015

Feb 02 2015

A big night at SSO: spectacle, done with skill

“Russian pianist Denis Kozhukhin (familiar from the Symphony’s 2013 Rachmaninov Festival) was the soloist on Piano Concerto No. 3. From the spare chill elegance of the first movement’s opening to the keyboard cascades that followed, Kozhukhin had an absolute free-ranging authority.

The sway, sparkle and jeweled caprice he brought to the quieter passages were seductive. His thunder, when thunder was called for, was both potent and lush. Result: an instant and prolonged standing ovation.”
Seattle Times, Review, 30 January 2015

Dec 03 2014

Recording: Haydn Piano Sonatas (ONYX 4118)

“It’s wonderful to hear a pianist with Kozhukhin’s gifts for playing big Russian repertoire devoting himself with such incredible enjoyment… love and affection to this incredibly inventive music.”

“So poised: his sense of rhythm, his sense of space between the notes, his puckish sense of humour… the whole disc… is unalloyed pleasure.”
BBC Radio 3, CD Review, 29 November 2014

Dec 01 2014

Recording: Haydn Piano Sonatas (ONYX 4118)

“Still in his twenties, Russian pianist Denis Kozhukhin has already notched up an impressive array of awards and star appearances… On the face of it, these are rather ‘straight’ readings, meticulously fingered and judiciously paced; Kozhukhin never rushes detail or stabs at the keyboard for emphasis, nor does he resort to decorating repeats or adding brief cadenzas at fermata… Yet his apparent restraint discloses an intent thoughtfulness and a subtlety of dynamic shading through which the highly contrasted characters of Haydn’s various movements emerge all the more compellingly.

All this is evident in his fine account of the relatively familiar E flat Sonata composed in 1789 – yet even more so in the CD’s three earlier sonatas from the 1770s. The darkly rocking F minor slow movement of Sonata No. 38, as sensitively contoured by Kozhukhin, sounds like a pre-echo of the nocturnes of Field and Chopin some 60 years in the future, while his playing of the central minuet of Sonata No. 47 glows with gentle affection. We are not told the make of Kozhukhin’s modern concert grand, but it sounds lucid and even-toned in Onyx’s focused recording.”
BBC Music Magazine, February 2015

“Kozhukhin proves himself an incisive and thoughtful interpreter of Haydn. His grace, lyrical fluency and sensitivity to every aspect of these works is impressive, humour never overdone, with a lithe energy throughout.”
Classical Music Magazine, January 2015

“Denis Kozhukhin offers an absolutely remarkable version, evident from the very first notes. He highlights both the fluidity and accentuation of the discourse… Sonatas No. 38 in F major and No. 47 in B minor are some of the best known, and we are grateful to Denis Kozhukhin for having also selected Sonata No. 39 in D major. Its second movement, a delicate minor Adagio, continues directly into a final Presto which is extremely difficult to perform, with melodic fragments relentlessly passing from one hand to the other in dazzling musical fireworks before an abrupt conclusion. There are many CDs available containing similar programmes, but this one is a must-have.”
Musikzen, December 2014

“Acerbic and architecturally pointed, Kozhukhin’s playing totally mesmerizes our love of the keyboard palette [Sonata No. 47]… Kozhukhin negotiates the demanding shifts of texture and touch with seamless facility, brilliant and eminently arresting.”
Audiophile Audition, December 2014

“The four pieces, composed in the 1770s and 1780s, are given dry, sophisticated readings in which the humor in the music often sneaks in the back door of perception rather than being stated broadly. In an era in which the pianistic qualities of Haydn’s sonatas are perhaps overstressed, it’s nice to hear well-balanced readings like Kozhukhin’s here, and they fill an empty niche… The pianist’s work here is both brilliant and daring, with the “Sturm und Drang” content of the Piano Sonata in B minor, Hob. 16/32, scaled back about as far as it can go, but still holding together convincingly. An impressive and somewhat unexpected outing.”
Allmusic.com, January 2015

Nov 25 2014

Houston Symphony Orchestra / Jakub Hrůša / Prokofiev Piano Concerto No.2

“Kozhukhin is not only a genius musician, but also a brilliant performer. To watch him play is to be consumed by the music yourself in a totalizing wave. Shifts from ardent lines to chords ablaze with the disharmony that made this concerto so controversial at the beginning of the century were surprisingly fluid. Kozhukhin, rising from his bench to pull chords off the keyboard, shaking hair loose from a small pony tail, would, in an unbroken turn, become small against the piano, hunching his back as if in line with a poignant decrescendo.

In an act of magnanimity, Kozhukhin gave in to the audience’s standing ovation and calls for an encore. He chose an arrangement of Gluck’s “Dance of the Blessed Spirits” from the opera Orfeo ed Euridice. It should have been a stark change from the explosive concerto, but, profoundly, it felt like a demurely fitting resolution… To say it was breathtaking is an understatement.”
Bachtrack, October 2014

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