Stories » Daniil Trifonov plays magical, poetic Rachmaninov in final Royal Festival Hall concert / theguardian

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Daniil Trifonov plays magical, poetic Rachmaninov in final Royal Festival Hall concert / theguardian

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For the final instalment in his Royal Festival Hall cycle of Rachmaninov's piano concertos, Daniil Trifonov turned to the most popular of the series, the second, with Jakub Hrůša conducting the Philharmonia.

For much of the performance – at least until the superabundant energy and weight required of him in the last movement – the pianist remained a still and imposing presence at the keyboard. However, he was on impressively firm and authoritative form throughout, summoning up a richness and depth of sonority that matched Rachmaninov's grandeur of gesture and combining this with a nigh-on flawless realisation of the concerto's exceptionally virtuosic demands.

Hrůša and the Philharmonia players skilfully supported the soloist's expressive aims in an interpretation that felt deliberate and considered rather than gushing. Trifonov addressed Rachmaninov's refulgent melodic lines with imaginative creativity, giving each a characteristic shape – even if occasionally overemphasising something essentially accompanimental. The vivid scale of the playing, together with its wide and artistically purposeful dynamic range, were commanding, and achieved without any feeling of excess.  READ THE FULL guardian REVIEW