This series of TV programmes presents the very best of the 16th Verbier Festival with worldwide renowned artists such as Susan Graham, Martha Argerich, Stephen Kovacevich, Yuri Temirkanov and Philippe Jaroussky.
Stephen Kovacevich, distinguished highly regarded American pianist and conductor, is famous for his tremendous interpretations of Beethoven, Mozart and Schumann which are renowned.
He has conducted many of the world’s finest orchestras, for example the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, London Mozart Players, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra or Royal Liverpool Philharmonic.
He has won unsurpassed admiration for his interpretations of the piano oeuvre by Beethoven, Brahms, Mozart and Schubert for the thoughtful and intense creativity; his concert appearances are always unique.
Kovacevich made his concert debut as a pianist at the age of 11. When he was 14, he already played Ravel's Piano Concerto in G major and Schumann's Piano Concerto in A minor with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra.
His international reputation has been built both on his concert appearances, renowned for their thoughtfulness and re-creative intensity, and on the highly acclaimed recordings he has made throughout his career.
'In a period when Beethoven interpretation has become fairly standardized, Kovacevich remains a free spirit, making a profoundly personal response to the music and playing in an improvisatory style, which fits descriptions of how Beethoven performed his own music.' Boston Globe
Picture format DVD: NTSC 16:9
Sounds formats DVD: PCM Stereo, DD 5.1, DTS 5.1
Region code: 0
Booklet notes: English, German, French
Running time: 95 min
“Filmed in his seventieth year, this recital is proof that pianist Stephen Kovacevich is still very much in his prime...And the unfussy camera-work is just what we need to savour the mechanics of his art: most of the shots are of his hands in close-up, showing the surgical precision of his finger-work. The film draws us intimately in.”
“The [Bach] Partita is quite outstanding while the Schumann, with each little poem gratifyingly linked without pause, is charmingly characterised...If you need an illustration of masterly production on the piano, look no further.”
“The positive aspect of this aprticular DVD is what it reveals about Stephen Kovacevich's personal approach...His interpretation of Bach's Partita No. 4 in D major is exemplary. There is absolutely no attempt at harpsichord imitation...He plays the music as if Bach intended it for the modern piano...it is a great privilege to hear him play these works.”
“[The Diabellis are] custom built for Kovacevich. Nothing this artist does is less than compelling...Martial Barrault's camera angles achieve a nice balance to catch both an overall picture and a close-up of his hands.”
Click on any of the works listed above for alternative recordings.