Grigorij Sokolov Works His Magic At Vienna Konzerthaus

By Matthias Loinig | 15.12.2014

Whilst the world-famous Wizard of Oz played at the Volksoper, there was another Wizard in the Konzerthaus giving his 16th performance in Vienna!

Grigorij Sokolov, the Wizard of Sound. And as opposed to the Wizard of OZ, Sokolov is a real Wizard!

© MUSIK IM RIESENFESTIVAL ©Swarovski Kristallwelten

Sokolov was born in Leningrad and started playing the piano when he was a five-year-old boy. At the age of sixteen he had already won first prize at the Tschaikowsky Music Competition in Moscow.

On Friday, the 12th of December, he silenced the sold-out audience for nearly three Hours with his performance, so much so that you would have heard a needle falling onto the floor. In other words, the audience was hypnotised by him playing the Steinway.

And it is no secret any longer- Sokolov is one of the best and most fascinating pianists in the whole world!

He is the ANTI- STAR par excellence, restrained and far away from glamour: In an – especially for him- darkened Konzerthaus he rushed to the piano and started to play at once.

Everything looks so simple and natural watching him. If you listen, it gets clear very soon, why he is such a genius piano player: The way he holds the tension and distinguishes every singly tone with brilliance is just unique and transfers you into another universe.

He started his program with Bach Partita Nr. 1 B-Major, BWV 825. Perfectly clear and full of emotions, if Bach could have listened he would have been completely satisfied with that interpretation.

After that he played Beethoven D- Major Sonata op. 10/3 where the slow part was extremely sensitive and impressive. The highlight was Chopin’s H-flat Sonata, just breath-taking how he configures every single part of that Sonata, just phenomenal.

After the official program was over, Sokolov blessed the audience with 6 encores, lasting one hour!

With two Impromentus from Schubert, two Mazurkas from Chopin and a Gribojedow waltz he earned Standing Ovations!

At the beginning it was announced that Sokolov is now the new honorary member of the Konzerthaus!

So we are looking forward to many more evenings following SOKOLOV. And yes, he is a living legend!

Austrian Times