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In the second of his recordings for Linn, charismatic pianist Simon Trpčeski performs Shostakovich’s two Piano Concertos with the outstanding Janáček Philharmonic Ostrava under Orchestre National de France’s new Musical Director Cristian Măcelaru. Shostakovich’s impish First Piano Concerto exudes the carefree attitude and sassy swagger of the young composer, and proves a perfect match with Simon’s playful pianism and Andrei Kavalinsky’s thundering trumpet. Written as a birthday present (and what a present!) for the composer’s son Maxim, the Second Piano Concerto is an uncharacteristically light-hearted piece given the doom and gloom of the time. Simon’s fiendish virtuosity and musical intelligence revel in this energetic piano favourite. As a generous encore, Makedonissimo’s violinist Aleksandar Krapovski and cellist Alexander Somov join Simon for Shostakovich’s Piano Trio No. 2. A must have album!

 

 

"The performances of the concertos alone would make this a highly desirable disc. Add in what has now become my yardstick recording for the Second Piano Trio and you have a real winner."
MusicWeb International
"Trpceski dazzles with his technical bravura and sly wit in No 1, and with his singing legato in No 2's Andante. The masterpiece here is the E minor Piano Trio, a brooding work written towards the end of the Second World War in which Shostakovich's empathy with Jewish dance music emerges in the coruscating finale. The orchestra and the string soloists Aleksandar Krapovski and Alexander Somov contribute vividly to this outstanding release."
The Sunday Times
"From these three very different portraits of an extraordinary composer the trio stands out as an excellent performance of one of Shostakovich's finest, underappreciated works."