Daniil Tri­fonov

BBC Music Magazine - - Bbc Music Magazine Awards -

Rach­mani­nov Pi­ano Con­cer­tos Nos 2 and 4; JS Bach’s Par­tita in E for solo vi­o­lin, arr. Rach­mani­nov Daniil Tri­fonov (pi­ano); Philadel­phia Or­ches­tra/yan­nick Nézet-séguin Deutsche Gram­mophon 483 5335

What do you be­lieve is the se­cret be­hind the suc­cess of this record­ing?

The Philadel­phia Or­ches­tra has a great his­tory play­ing with Rach­mani­nov, and there are still a lot of el­e­ments of that tra­di­tion that have been care­fully pre­served. In some places, the vi­o­lins use a slight glis­sando be­tween notes, and if you lis­ten to Rach­mani­nov’s record­ings with the Philadel­phia, the vi­o­lins do sim­i­lar things. The or­ches­tra also still has the scores of the Fourth Con­certo from Rach­mani­nov’s day with the com­poser’s mark­ings in.

What was your ap­proach, pi­anis­ti­cally?

I’ve been work­ing on my Rach­mani­nov sound for a long time – it’s very dif­fer­ent from the sound needed for other com­posers. It has to be ex­tremely warm and spa­cious, and not too sharp. But it also needs a round­ness to play Rach­mani­nov’s large phrases in one long breath and not make them feel like a com­pi­la­tion of many smaller phrases.

Do you think the Fourth Con­certo is as great a work as the Sec­ond?

I think it’s per­haps even more in­no­va­tive – it’s ex­tremely fresh and rep­re­sen­ta­tive of that time; I feel trans­ported to the pe­riod when it was writ­ten. There are so many rapid changes and, un­like the Sec­ond, it doesn’t con­tain long lines. He goes into al­most Men­delssoh­nian style – it’s a very in­ter­est­ing ex­per­i­ment.

Why did you in­clude the Rach­mani­nov tran­scrip­tion of the Bach par­tita?

Well, firstly, it’s some­thing that I hadn’t recorded yet – it’s a bril­liant tran­scrip­tion and I wanted to have some­thing in be­tween the con­cer­tos. But the par­tita is also a bridge be­tween them: the Sec­ond Con­certo is writ­ten in quite a poly­phonic lan­guage, and there’s one small fugue in the de­vel­op­ment sec­tion of the fi­nal move­ment. Rach­mani­nov’s tran­scrip­tion also con­tains a lit­tle bit of the jazz lan­guage that he’d go on to use in the Fourth Con­certo.

A wild ride: star pi­anist Daniil Tri­fonov

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