Lugansky demonstrating his early promise in Rachmaninov,
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This review is from: Preludes, Moments Musicaux (Nikolai Lugansky) (Audio CD)
This disc from 2000 clearly announced to the waiting world that a new and notable exponent of Rachmaninov had arrived. The disc fully justifies the expectation which preceded it and fortunately the recording quality does the performances good service being full ranges and sonorous.
Lugansky is possessed of considerable technical resources which enables him to approach Rachmaninov's interpretive demands without apparent technical compromise. That impression is reinforced by the fine DVD he made at the Roque d'Antheron which ends with Rachmaninov of definitive bravura. Lugansky's approach to Rachmaninov favours the darker colours which can be brought out in performance. He favoured the same range of expression in his admired set of Chopin Etudes so it would be fair to suggest that this may be part of his natural character. The preludes and Moments Musicaux on this disc give him ample opportunity to explore the 'dark side' of Rachmaninov, and bearing in mind what we know about Rachmaninov's own character, this emphasis seems to be completely justified.
Lugansky is not the only Russian pianist to sound absolutely at one with the Russian soul as expressed in Rachmaninov's compositions. Richter is an earlier example but even since this recording by Lugansky there have been several more young Russian pianists of considerable noteworthiness to consider.
Nevertheless I would suggest that even in this time of extraordinary choice of fine performances on disc, this one should be seriously considered. If the program appeals it is unlikely that any purchaser will be other than impressed and delighted with these well recorded performances.