Friday, November 6, 2015

BEETHOVEN The Late Piano Sonatas

“Those who are searching for perfection can stop here...this set, the first solo recording from Russo-German pianist Igor Levit, sets a new standard that will be very difficult to surpass...I guarantee that you will only stop when you are sated with sublimity. Revelatory experiences like this don’t come often in a lifetime.” --BBC Music Magazine, January 2014 *****

“it quickly emerges that this is neither reckless nor arrogant but a debut of true significance. Everywhere you turn, you encounter thoughtfulness, an utter engagement with the composer and a clear sense of Levit’s personality, though never in a shouty ‘look at me, I’m playing the Hammerklavier fugue’ sort of way.” --Gramophone Magazine

“Levit's is [a first choice], and he demands to be heard.” --International Record Review, December 2014

“There is some scintillating playing here – and it all serves the music...It would be idle to suggest that these are definitive readings of these works...but they are full of character and insights and thus to be included in any library shortlist, and the immediate recording lucidly relays Levit’s palpable and deep-seated commitment to the music.”

“there's certainly nothing callow or immature about any of them. And it's certainly hard to imagine that he will ever make these sonatas seem any more beautiful than they do here, for the evenness of the sound Levit produces is astonishing...It's all hugely impressive.” --The Guardian, 21st August 2013 ****

“Levit’s affinity for the composer’s essentially linear style and intense expressivity borders on clairvoyance, if you’ll forgive the cliché...In short, this is Beethoven playing of the highest distinction, not to be missed.” --Classics Today

“After a few minutes, I was transfixed. Here was playing of technical brilliance, tonal allure, intellectual drive, and an elusive quality that the Germans indicate with the word Innigkeit, or inwardness.” --Alex Ross, The New Yorker, 14th April 2014

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