I saw the young (age 28) Ukrainian-Israeli pianist Victor Stanislavsky perform at the Athenaeum Music and Arts Library in La Jolla.
The program, which was not announced in advance, turned out to be all-Chopin: the Polanaise-Fantasy, Op. 61; Polanaise Op. 71, No. 1; three waltzes Op. 34; Scherzo No. 4 in E major; and -- after an intermission -- the Sonata No. 3 in B minor, Op. 58.
It was a challenging and tastefully selected program, and Stanislavsky performed it with grace and feeling.
He has a musical, not just a technical, gift and his good taste was evident throughout the recital.
His technique (I hate that word, but I can't think of a better one right now) is commanding, which allows him to concentrate on making music.
I was especially impressed by his ability to bring out the inner voices (alto and tenor) in his playing when appropriate.
I hope that he will let himself really go and bring out the driving rhythms and dynamics of some of these pieces in the future.
I know that he can do that, because he certainly did it in the very difficult last movement of the sonata.
I thought that he carried his rubato a bit too far in the middle section of the A-flat major waltz. But those are my only critical comments.
It was a pleasure seeing him perform these pieces without any apparent strain.
His physical presence and rapport with the audience were superb. And he was very nice in saying at the end that he appreciated the warm feeling that the audience had given him in return.
Posted on 8 Feb 2010, 4:50 PM