International Piano - March 2023
‘Music comes straight from the heart and speaks only to the heart: it is Love!’ These are the words of arguably the greatest composer-pianist of the last century – and certainly the most popular. Despite his works having faced criticism in his own lifetime, Rachmaninov’s music is today cherished by performers and audiences worldwide. In particular, his Second and Third Concertos have become mainstays of every major piano competition final, serving as the ultimate test of technical and interpretative brilliance that every aspiring virtuoso must master.
This month sees the 150th anniversary of Rachmaninov’s birth, which is celebrated in the March issue with a series of in-depth articles examining his life and legacy. We explore the discography of Rachmaninov the performer, delve into the studenthood that shaped his formidable gifts and consider whether he was really cured by hypnosis. There’s also a listener’s guide to Rachmaninov’s evergreen Paganini Variations, highlighting dozens of the best recordings from the past 10 decades.