How's Schiff playing these days?

On the 12th of January Schiff is playing a recital at the Philharmonie de Paris:

Felix Mendelssohn
Fantaisie op. 28
Ludwig van Beethoven
Sonate n°24 Op.78 “A Thérèse”
Johannes Brahms
Klavierstücke op. 76
Fantasien op. 116
Johann Sebastian Bach
Suite anglaise n° 6 en ré mineur BWV 811

On the same night, Boris Berezovsky is playing a recital at the Theatre des Champs-Elysees:

Prokofiev Sonate n° 8 op. 84
Scriabine Sonate n° 5 op. 53, Etudes
Rachmaninov Sonate n°2 op. 36

I currently have a ticket to attend this (second row, three to the left of the sweet spot).
There are still tickets available for Schiff and I can get a second row spot which might hit the tail of the piano (in any case it will be to the right of pole position).

I have never seen either in recital but I will see Boris in concerto (liszt 1, totentanz) later this season.
I don’t know when I’ll get another chance to see Schiff; he’s played twice in Paris this year but I’m not sure how frequent his appearances are, whereas Boris is here all the time.
Because of that and the fact that I find Schiff’s programme way more interesting, I’m tossing up whether to resell the Boris ticket and see Schiff instead. If I hadn’t already bought da whale ticket when I found out about Schiff I would definitely have taken Schiff.

What do you guys reckon?

I’d go with the one you want. Berezovsky’s program is awesome–fact–but if you’re more inclined to hear Schiff, go for it.[/b]

I’d be happy to hear either but I think I will resell Berezovsky.

Holy shit, go for the WHALE.

I wonder which Scribets?

I’ve put it on resale.
If it doesn’t sell I’ll probably give it to a friend.
I think I’ll get a better performance out of Schiff than da whale.

I’d pick Berezovsky, personally. That program is WIKID, and Berezovsky tends to play very well in France.

Schiff is a bit of a bore lately (always). I have a bootleg somewhere of him in a very similar program, and it wasn’t great.

Yeah man, I’d go for the whale any time

Well for right now I’ve got both tickets so I can decide later which one to attend.

Yeah rezpek.
When da whale is on - his girth is tremendous

I don’t think I’ve ever heard in in Prok 8 or Scrib 5. And the only rec I have of him in Rach op36 is shite quality.

Those 3 are easily top 10 Russian Sonatas for me.

Randomly I’m going to post a bunch of Schiff stuff I’ve got lying around. First up, complete live Beethoven Sonatas.

That’s the thing, when he’s on he’s a great pianist but he rarely reaches that level.

Thanks, looking forward to it!

Tru, da Scrib 5 pozz my all ovah fave Russian zon 8)

Same dude, I didn’t even know he plays the Prok 8 or Scrib 5. I would go for the Scrib Etudes.

I heard him play the Rach Sonata 2 when visiting Tokyo. He flew through it, I feel he sometimes comes across a bit glib though. My taste is for a heavier interp. Sick program for Paris anyway.

my favorite Rach 2nd son was Matsuev live in Carnegie, pozz in 2011?
I remember it was so stunning, impeccable pedaling, big projecting tone which reached even my shitty seats near the ceiling.

And I couldn’t believe how good it was, especially after hearing him in the previous rectal with the Mussorgsky pics which was not good.

damn. When da MENACE unleash, he fuckin PLAYS

Berezovsky played essentially the same programme at FLV in feb.
I couldn’t get a ticket to it.
He only got a 3/5 rating in this review: … vrier-2017
Haven’t had a chance to read it yet (Stranger Things 2).

He played the complete op 8 etudes (da TM nemesis), so presumably he will play either the complete set or a selection.


Da complete op 8 Scribets. Man, I gotta hear dat live to see how da tru mofoz do it!

Okay I think we can discount the review; dude doesn’t know what the fuck he’s talking about:


Fuck I don’t know, maybe I’ll wait till the 11th then flip a coin.

These two concerts couldn’t be more different from one another. One is a colorist playing absolut-musik, the other an virtuoso doing bombshells from the Russian romantic repertoire.

The first thing to say about Schiff is that he’s an extremely polarizing pianist. You either love him or hate him, and for it to be the former I think you need to have an interest in “classical” music and appreciate the more subtle aspects of piano playing. His is a sunny, Mendelssohnian view of the musical landscape, completely free from drama and conflict, and built on rigorous, scrupulous musical principles and the idea that music is made through phrasing and coloring. He has been very good again at what he does since around 2007, and if you’re lucky he could give you extraordinary colorful and imaginative playing from a musical mind which is completely unique today. He can also be a real hairdresser at the piano, who simply sits there and delivers nice pleasantries for an entire evening, and in worst case he’s also perfectly capable of simply being grey and boring (though that’s primarily 1993-2006 from my experience). Berezovsky on the other hand is very consistent, and I think you already know about what he’ll give you.

For ME at least, who does appreciate what Schiff does at the piano, this would have been a no brainer. I would have attended his recital since that’s were the potential is. He could deliver something quite memorable, whereas I know Berezovsky wouldn’t. That said, if you upload a recording here I would be happy to listen to either concert.

In case it would help you make up your mind I recorded this with BB earlier this year:

BB#091. February 6, 2017: Fondation Louis Vuitton, Paris, France (Webstream128 | FLAC)

• Prokofiev: Piano Sonata No.8 in B-flat major, Op.84
• Scriabin: Piano Sonata No.5 in F-sharp major, Op.53

• Scriabin: 12 Etudes, Op.8

• Hindemith: 1922 (Suite for Piano), Op.26
• Chopin: Impromptu No.4 in C-sharp minor, Op.66 (Fantaisie-Impromptu)

  • This recital was postponed from Jan.26.