tue 20/02/2018

Lugansky, Russian National Orchestra, Boreyko, Royal Albert Hall | reviews, news & interviews

Lugansky, Russian National Orchestra, Boreyko, Royal Albert Hall

Lugansky, Russian National Orchestra, Boreyko, Royal Albert Hall

Rachmaninov's Rhapsody lacks soul; Tchaikovsky's Suite exudes it

Nikolai Lugansky: 'I was very aware of the orchestra bailing Lugansky out in the big emotional moments and scene changes'
Russians can often get away with murder in concert. It's so ingrained within our Western psyche to believe that the Slav has culture, musicality, an innate aesthetic sensitivity pouring out of every toe that you could get a Russian to do the chicken dance and we'd all be ooh-ing and ah-ing about the passion of each wing flap, the brooding darkness of each wiggle, the searing, sarcastic quality of each clap. Not all Russians have a Russian soul. And some, like pianist Nikolai Lugansky at last night's Prom, display little sign of any soul at all.

Even the note-perfect technical flights came across as a random tangle of lines rather than a delicate weave

Share this article


Fugues also in the first suite, the piano trio and a funny fugato in the messy Manfred finale. Probably others know of more. I reckon he does them quite well. And I don't find Lugansky as detached as yopu do - though you argue your case very well. Less sure that I would have found the Gergiev Firebird as disappointing as your colleague Alexandra, though - he IS erratic, but that's usually a score he does better than anyone.

Add comment

Subscribe to theartsdesk.com

Thank you for continuing to read our work on theartsdesk.com. For unlimited access to every article in its entirety, including our archive of more than 10,000 pieces, we're asking for £3.95 per month or £30 per year. We feel it's a very good deal, and hope you do too.

To take an annual subscription now simply click here.

And if you're looking for that extra gift for a friend or family member, why not treat them to a theartsdesk.com gift subscription?


Get a weekly digest of our critical highlights in your inbox each Thursday!

Simply enter your email address in the box below

View previous newsletters