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Guy Aron
MusicWeb International, January 2013

Michelangeli’s pianism is superb throughout, with wonderful clarity of articulation and intuitive phrasing that never seems hurried.

[Michelangeli’s] imperious technical command is always evident, and the dynamics are carefully shaped without sounding calculated…the La Scala orchestra plays well.

Michelangeli’s early accounts of the Grieg and Schumann concertos have sensitivity, fantasy and authority… © 2013 MusicWeb International Read complete review

David Denton
David's Review Corner, October 2012

In his later years Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli cancelled as many concerts as he gave, only adding to the aura of mystique that surrounded this remarkable pianist. He was still in his teens when he was named the winner of the 1939 Geneva International Piano Competition, the world losing sight of him in the war years until in 1946 when he made a sensational debut in London. He had apparently served in the Italian air force, but had made a limited number of recordings for the German Telefunken label. They contained both the Schumann and Grieg concertos with the La Scala Orchestra in magical performances that show a strong musical personality, his freedom of tempo and rhythm bringing a sense of total spontaneity. Already there was an imperious quality to his playing, his accompanying conductors, Antonio Pedrotti and Aleco Galliera, having to respond to his every nuance. Fluid fingers bring a crystal quality, though he was also well equipped to bring white-hot excitement to the Grieg concerto, the first movement cadenza—a very personal statement—never having sounded more brilliant. His central movement is heavier than we often hear, his finale tingling with excitement. I have to add that it was not universally acclaimed among critics when first internationally released, but they had yet to experience the freedom of expression both works would receive in the years to come from a whole raft of pianists. © 2012 David’s Review Corner

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