Yong Siew Toh Conservatory Auditorium
This review of the Singapore début of Ilya Rashkovskiy, 1st prizewinner of the 1st Hong Kong International Piano Competition in 2005, appeared on the pages of The Straits Times on 8 December 2007.
For the more visceral challenges of the Schubert-Liszt Valse-Caprice No. 6 and Liszt Mephisto Waltz No.l, Rashkovskiy resisted the temptation to showboat a la Horowitz or Lang Lang. The results were still highly satisfying, with the feather-light touches in the "love music" of the latter warhorse proving more persuasive that its obligatory stampeding octaves.
One encore, a subtly and lovingly shaded Chopin Prelude, served to fuel one thought: While the Far East has become the mass producer of fine performers, Russia still has the lion's share of music's aristocrats.