For the first time in over nine years, Arcadi Volodos has agreed to record an entire concert for TV again. Indeed, his recital at Vienna's Musikverein, for which he has chosen works by Skrjabin, Ravel, Schumann and Liszt, features a line-up of Romantic to early 20th-century heavyweights, which Volodos renders with his inimitable blend of ethereal lightness and forceful vigor.
The recital begins with a selection of pieces by Alexander Skryabin, in which Volodos displays his phenomenal technique, culminating in the White Mass. Under Volodos' hands, Maurice Ravel's Valses nobles et sentimentales becomes "a kaleidoscope of transparent, gossamer colors" (Die Presse). While Volodos' account of Schumann's Waldszenen flashes with startling harmonic echoes of the Ravel piece, his rendition of Liszt's Après une lecture de Dante from the Années de Pèlerinage "radiates modernity" (Der Standard). The keyboard sensation provides a further example of his artistry in his encores, in which he demonstrates his talent for creating his own dazzling piano transcriptions of works by other composers. In an interview recorded on the occasion of the Vienna recital, Volodos discusses many aspects of his career, his playing, and his life.
Born in St. Petersburg in 1972, Arcadi Volodos burst onto the musical scene as consummate virtuoso and full-fledged master of expressiveness practically overnight: since he refused to take part in competitions in his youth, he was discovered almost by chance in the late 1990s. He made his international breakthrough with his first recording, a collection of bravura transcriptions that brought him epithets such as "young sorcerer" and "new Horowitz" – plaudits confirmed by the many awards he has since received for his recordings and the many prestigious venues at which he has played.