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Reviews

June 17th, 2013

West Australian Symphony Orchestra / cond. Arvo Volmer / Prokofiev Piano Concerto No. 3

“Many years ago, I heard Julius Katchen in Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3. Until the weekend, I had never encountered a performance to match it. But on Friday, at his first performance in Perth, Denis Kozhukhin, the young Russian pianist, did just that in an electrifying account of one of the toughest keyboard assignments in the repertoire.

Building up to shattering climaxes, Kozhukhin, like some pianistic Zeus, hurled bolts of sound into the auditorium and, with fearless fingers and phenomenal finesse, steered a faultless way through pages that are unconquerable Everests for most other musicians. So attuned was this extraordinary pianist to the subtleties of the score, it seemed as if the presentation was more a form of communion between pianist and composer than mere communication between soloist and audience…

And in response to a storm of ecstatic applause, Kozhukhin gave us, as encore, Siloti’s arrangement of Bach’s Prelude in B minor. After the pianistic pyrotechnics of the concerto, the unfolding of these serene measures was an oasis of tranquillity. Bravissimo!”

The West Australian, June 2013

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