In a few words this masterpiece lets itself describe, with honour and merit to what Richter deserves, but at the same time overloaded with superlatives for this whole concept.
I have quite a VHS-collection (between 500 and 600) of musicians (all genres), but this one beats everything: this film is "OUT OF CATEGORY" !!
The content of this VHS is about 1 of the 2 TITANS ever of the piano: Emil Gilels, whom Richter studied with at Moscow under Neuhaus, is the second one.
Concerning the film I will not spoil WHAT you will get to see and hear, but the makers of this 'movie' have well elaborated their theme. I will always be grateful to them: S. Richter is about - what is called in the European classic music world - the last Lisztian performer at the piano. Only Franz LISZT himself is in the neighbourhood when Svjatoslav Richter is touching his piano... As always with Richter his 'legato' playing (at Moscow he chose for legato, leaving 'the rest', meaning assai playing was more the style of Emil Gilels) keeps astonishing the listener. I was very pleased ànd surprised that the editors have been able to find that much rare footage: this pianist lived under Stalin and the Sovjetregime...
I have no problem to say that this VHS is A "REAL" MUST for all those who love the piano 'singing'. If you can, than also buy or listen to the triple CD that contains Richters pianowork as you can hear playing at the VHS. The experiences are not the same (different means!), but I can assure you that both are VINTAGE PRODUCTS.
P.S.: For those who are not acquainted with the word "Lisztian", it means more or less that the pianist can still perform in the style of the great virtuoso Franz Liszt was himself. Only a good dozen (Richter, Gilels, Horowitz, Michelangeli, Fischer, Arrau, Backhaus,...) may wear this title since Paderewski and Cortot.