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Jeremy Nicholas
Gramophone, July 2020

There is a similar sparkle and panache on show throughout this disc, and many of the studies are played with the relish of an end-of-concert encore, individually tailored to stagger and delight an audience.

Scherbakov offers an utterly compelling alternative…a fine tribute in Godowsky’s sesquicentenary year. © 2020 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone




Jed Distler
ClassicsToday.com, March 2020

Scherbakov’s effortlessly soaring No. 25 (the best of Godowsky’s various studies based on Op. 25 No. 1) is one of this release’s high points. … Scherbakov fully captures the idiomatic spirit of Op. 24 No. 4’s Polonaise treatment and the Op. 25 No. 5 as Mazurka study.

…A stellar achievement, and I look forward to Scherbakov tackling (as well as caressing!) the remaining Godowsky/Chopin Studies. © 2020 ClassicsToday.com Read complete review



David Denton
David's Review Corner, March 2020

Before the age of fifteen the Polish-born pianist, Leopold Godowsky, had become famous on both sides of the Atlantic as one of the most remarkably gifted virtuosos.

As a composer of piano music he was prolific, though his reputation was rather mixed as he relied too often on other composers to give him the basis for his scores. This was certainly the case with the massive 53 Studies on Chopin’s Etudes, the work occupying him for around 20 years, the result becoming one the most technically difficult and demanding keyboard scores ever composed. It did, of course, serve the purpose of placing him as a performer in a class that few could possibly emulate. Many are variants on the same Chopin Etude, often written for left hand alone. Few last more than four minutes, so in that respect they did not greatly extend the original material, this disc lasting just a little short of eighty minutes, and contains twenty-five of the fifty-three. The release does not say why—though I guess all will be made clear in the next release(s)—but there are many numerically missing studies before this disc ends with the Forty-fifth. They are performed by the Serbian-born pianist, Konstantin Scherbakov, who has already placed us in his debt with his previous Godowsky releases. Here you will find him tackling music that really requires three hands, yet there is almost a nonchalance in his acceptance of the demands, his choice of tempos often dangerously fast, a fact that becomes mind-blowing when only the left hand is playing the Fourth at a mercurial Presto, a feat made even more improbable in the Tenth of Opus 25.  And so I can continue in this list of brilliance. Thankfully Scherbakov has John Taylor as the producer/engineer who brings so much clarity to the often complex scenario. Most strongly recommended. © 2020 David’s Review Corner





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