on 22 June 2000
Pogorelich's practice routine: First he takes a copy of the music and tippexs out all the dynamics, tempo markings and phrases. Then he draws in new phrases, elongates a note here and shortens one there and generally moves around all the furniture around in Chopin's scherzos. Well that's what it sounds like. Pogorelich uses these pieces as exhibitions for his remarkable technique and one can only marvel at his command of touch and balance. Yet if Chopin himself listened to these recordings he would pale and take a hammer to the speakers. Those who find pogorelichisms interesting and enlightening then what delights lie within this rather short CD (42 mins)! But those who prefer to stick to classical interpretations of pieces should give this a wide birth. The 5 stars are for playing quality.
I'd always admired Pogorelich's performance each time new recording came out, but this one was the fist disappointing one. His playing, still very strong though technically, seems completely out of touch with both himself and the music. Usually his breaking-the-mold interpretation impresses me, but these performances completely lack taut sense of architecture, and it all sounds like deformed version of Chopin Scherzi. Maybe his personal loss affected the performance?