February 19th, 2014
“South Florida might not need another performance of the Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 1, but if you’re going to hear this work for the 20th or 30th time, let it be with a soloist of the caliber of the young Russian pianist Denis Kozhukhin… Kozhukhin is a fiery and dramatic performer, whose daring style made the most of this concerto.
He played the huge ascending chords that accompany the opening theme in the orchestra in a forward-leaning manner that gave an extra impetus and excitement to the beginning of the work. No matter how fast and thick the notes came, his mastery of the keyboard allowed him to bring a light, sure and accurate touch that brought unusual clarity to passages that can often seem like blurs of notes. From languid melodies to fierce runs in double octaves, he embraced the concerto’s pathos and drama, with none of the obvious keyboard pounding of lesser musicians…
Kozhukhin seized center stage again in the last movement, displaying fluency at the keyboard and a fearless approach to the work’s virtuoso challenges.”
South Florida Classical Review, February 2014