The unique, unrepeatable nature of music made in the present moment is central to understanding the expressive beauty and compelling honesty of Grigory Sokolov’s art. The Russian pianist’s poetic interpretations, which come to life with mystical intensity in performance, arise from a profound knowledge of the works in his vast repertoire. His recital programmes span everything from transcriptions of medieval sacred polyphony and keyboard works by William Byrd, François Couperin, Jean-Philippe Rameau, and Johann Jakob Froberger to the music of Johann Sebastian Bach, Ludwig van Beethoven, Franz Schubert, Robert Schumann, Fryderyk Chopin, Johannes Brahms and landmark 20th-century compositions by Sergei Prokofiev, Maurice Ravel, Alexander Scriabin, Sergei Rachmaninov, Arnold Schönberg and Igor Stravinsky. He is widely recognized among pianophiles as one of today’s greatest pianists, an artist universally admired for his visionary insight, spellbinding spontaneity and uncompromising devotion to music.
Grigory Sokolov’s charismatic artistry holds power to cultivate the concentration necessary for audiences to contemplate even the most familiar compositions from fresh perspectives. In recital he draws listeners into a close relationship with the music, transcending matters of surface display and showmanship to reveal deeper spiritual meaning. His art rests on the rock-solid foundations of his unique personality and individual vision.
After two decades away from any kind of recording, Grigory Sokolov signed an exclusive contract with Deutsche Grammophon. Their partnership has made possible the publication of various recordings, all of them taken strictly from live concerts. For his first release the Russian pianist chose a concert that he had given in 2008 at the Salzburg Festival, featuring works by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Chopin, Bach, Rameau and Scriabin; a second album followed a year later, with works by Schubert and Beethoven. His third album, released in 2017, presents live performances of piano concertos by Mozart and Rachmaninov. These CD recordings are accompanied by a DVD of Nadia Zhdanova’s documentary A Conversation That Never Was: a portrait of Grigory Sokolov, compiled from interviews with his friends and colleagues and from previously unreleased private recordings. A double CD with DVD in 2020 featuring works by Beethoven, Brahms and Mozart was followed in April 2022 by the release of a concert recording from the Esterházy Palace in Eisenstadt, of three sonatas by Joseph Haydn, the Four Impromptus, D. 935 by Schubert and a generous selection of encores.