Stories » Daniil Trifonov - Transcendental / Washington Post review

Top 10 for Jul

Daniil Trifonov - Transcendental / Washington Post review

Bookmark and Share

Daunting. Formidable. Punishing. A supreme test of a pianist's technique and stamina. Liszt's "Transcendental Études" are indeed all of these things. But the rare genius of Daniil Trifonov's recording of these works, released in 2016, lies in the ability of this 25-year-old Russian phenomenon to remind us that Liszt was not merely a composer of virtuoso showpieces but a musical poet of the highest order.

Unlike Chopin's pathbreaking studies for solo piano, Liszt's Études do not isolate specific technical problems. Instead, Liszt harnessed a dazzling array of innovations on the level of sheer sound - new colors, textures and sonorities - to create a cycle of tone poems for the piano that captures the breadth and intensity of the composer's imagination. The sheer range of musical expression is astonishing: pastoral reveries, woodland scenes, romantic arias, heroic dramas, historical legends and visions of spiritual strife.

READ THE FULL Washington Post REVIEW