Paris, Salle Pleyel
The arrival of Rafał Blechacz closed this year piano season at the Salle Pleyel. The winner of the reputed International Frederic Chopin Piano Competition in 2005 (and of four other special prizes) who celebrated his victory exactly thirty years after winning the competition by his countryman Krystan Zimerman, builds a brilliant international career.
He started with Bach's Partita No. 1 for harpsichord and played it with a large measure of confidence. (...) Sonata K. 570 by Mozart, just as the previous composition, was played without any protraction, with great honesty in both fresh and mischievous first and third movements and in melancholic Adagio in between. Rafał Blechacz closed the first part of his programme with French music, playing the triptych Pour le Piano by Claude Debussy. The performance was
characterized by great diversity of different techniques, richness of expression and it was not just a purely mechanical performance (including the Toccata), without abusing the pedal. It truly deserves praise!
Since the anniversary is obliging, the second part of the concert consisted entirely of Chopin compositions. Here Blechacz was navigating in a familiar field. (...) That was great art not only when it comes to the construction of the first Scherzo but also when we consider the refinement of Mazurkas and of the famous Polonaise “Heroic”. In the final piece the pianist uses rubato with moderation. The pleasure he derives from playing is clearly visible. Moreover, he can be majestic without being heavy in his interpretations. Large and enthusiastic audience asked for more and they were given two encores: one was Chopin`s Nocturne and the other was the third movement from the Sonata op. 2 No. 2 by Beethoven.
/Paris, 15 June 2010, Jean-Baptiste de La Taille/