Complete Chopin Etudes
played by Nikolai Lugansky on Erato
From Katholiek Niewsblad, March 2000
Translated from the original Dutch by Eric Noya
Edited by Valour
Unequalled. Sublime. An exceptional recording. Unsurpassably played. 
Are these superlatives exaggerated ? No, absolutely not!

Lugansky's playing is full of expression. There is no technical limitation that compromises his impressive interpretations. Chopin composed every study with a specific technical difficulty in mind. For instance in No.2 the pianist has to play very fast chromatic scales with the naturally weak third and fourth fingers of the right hand . In No.9 the stretch of the left hand is tested to the extreme. And Lugansky came, he saw, and played all with ease. With Chopin, technical studies are no sheer finger-breakers. He managed to transform distances and stretch-exercises into truly poetic miniatures. Lugansky understands this like no-one else.

In particular, his interpretation of No.4 is unequalled. Flashing over the keys like a madman, he brings the tempo back very surprisingly and once again seizes the initiative at just the right moment.


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