Alexei Volodin
Piano

“Next to technical brilliance Volodin also possesses many other musical qualities...a small wonder” (Neue Luzerner Zeitung)

Contacts

Federico Hernandez +44 (0)20 3725 9184
Elise Jennings +44 (0)20 3725 9135

Biography

Acclaimed for his highly sensitive touch and technical brilliance, Alexei Volodin is in demand by orchestras at the highest level. 

This season Volodin will debut with Orchestre symphonique de Montréal and Antwerp Symphony Orchestra and return to Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Russian National and China NCPA orchestras, and Gergiev Festival with Mariinsky Orchestra.  Recent highlights include his debut at the BBC Proms with the London Symphony Orchestra, and concerts with Orquestra del Teatro di San Carlo, Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della Rai, NHK Symphony, The Mariinsky, Rotterdam Philharmonic, the Swedish Radio and Danish National Symphony orchestras under the baton of Kent Nagano, Alexander Vedernikov, Valery Gergiev, Vladimir Ashkenazy and Dima Slobodeniouk.  

Acclaimed for his highly sensitive touch and technical brilliance, Alexei Volodin is in demand by orchestras at the highest level. 

This season Volodin will debut with Orchestre symphonique de Montréal and Antwerp Symphony Orchestra and return to Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Russian National and China NCPA orchestras, and Gergiev Festival with Mariinsky Orchestra.  Recent highlights include his debut at the BBC Proms with the London Symphony Orchestra, and concerts with Orquestra del Teatro di San Carlo, Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della Rai, NHK Symphony, The Mariinsky, Rotterdam Philharmonic, the Swedish Radio and Danish National Symphony orchestras under the baton of Kent Nagano, Alexander Vedernikov, Valery Gergiev, Vladimir Ashkenazy and Dima Slobodeniouk.  

In recital, Volodin regularly performs at Vienna’s Konzerthaus, Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw, Paris’ Philharmonie, London’s International Piano Series and Wigmore Hall, the Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatoire, Alte Oper Frankfurt, Munich’s Herkulesaal, Tonhalle Zürich, Madrid’s Auditorio Nacional, and Barcelona’s Palau de la Musica. As a chamber musician he collaborates with the Borodin Quartet, Casals Quartet and Sol Gabetta

Volodin’s latest album with the Mariinsky label was Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No.4, conducted by Gergiev.  Recording for Challenge Classics, Volodin’s disc of solo Rachmaninov works was released in 2013. He also recorded a solo CD of Schumann, Ravel and Scriabin, and his earlier Chopin disc won a Choc de Classica and was awarded five stars by Diapason. 

Born in 1977 in Leningrad, Alexei Volodin studied at Moscow’s Gnessin Academy, the Moscow Conservatoire, and the International Piano Academy Lake Como. He gained international recognition following his victory at the International Géza Anda Competition in Zurich in 2003.

Alexei Volodin is an exclusive Steinway artist.

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Contacts

Federico Hernandez +44 (0)20 3725 9184
Elise Jennings +44 (0)20 3725 9135

Reviews

“approach[es] the fast movements with mercurial wit and dazzling clarity of fingerwork…allow[s] Prokofiev’s natural lyricism to come to the fore in the slow movement”. 5* (Erik Levi, BBC Music Magazine, March 2016)

“wonderfully mercurial…Volodin's fluent and apparently effortless pianism, matched by the alert accompaniment from Gergiev and his superb orchestra, make a most convincing case for this unjustly neglected work.” 4.5* (Graham Williams, HR Audio, January 2016)

“But the highlight of the evening came in the first half, when the Russian pianist Alexei Volodin was the soloist in Brahms’s Second Piano Concerto. I was astonished by the way in which Volodin combined Russian full-bloodedness with subtlety and deep-listening control of texture in this most-demanding, intellectually and virtuosically, of concertos. It was among the finest specimens of concerto-playing I have heard from the NSO, as the players and soloist made their parts integrate with one another, turn corners impeccably, and shade the discourse between parts. Volodin’s physical efforts were palpable but even stronger was the sense that magisterial mental and physical control were serving musical imagination and insight.” (Martin Adams, The Irish Times, October 2015)

“approach[es] the fast movements with mercurial wit and dazzling clarity of fingerwork…allow[s] Prokofiev’s natural lyricism to come to the fore in the slow movement”. 5* (Erik Levi, BBC Music Magazine, March 2016)

“wonderfully mercurial…Volodin's fluent and apparently effortless pianism, matched by the alert accompaniment from Gergiev and his superb orchestra, make a most convincing case for this unjustly neglected work.” 4.5* (Graham Williams, HR Audio, January 2016)

“But the highlight of the evening came in the first half, when the Russian pianist Alexei Volodin was the soloist in Brahms’s Second Piano Concerto. I was astonished by the way in which Volodin combined Russian full-bloodedness with subtlety and deep-listening control of texture in this most-demanding, intellectually and virtuosically, of concertos. It was among the finest specimens of concerto-playing I have heard from the NSO, as the players and soloist made their parts integrate with one another, turn corners impeccably, and shade the discourse between parts. Volodin’s physical efforts were palpable but even stronger was the sense that magisterial mental and physical control were serving musical imagination and insight.” (Martin Adams, The Irish Times, October 2015)

“Volodin is the kind of pianist that could only be grown in Russia: a virtuoso who loves to show his muscle, but plays full of passion in the slow passages. And he’s a pianist who knows what the word cantabile means with Rachmaninov: echoing the solemn singing of Orthodox Church music.” ***** (Joep Stapel and Merlijn Kerkhof, NRC Handelsblad, September 2015)

“Alexei Volodin’s performance of the Fourth was superbly controlled and beautifully subtle.” (Tim Ashley, The Guardian, July 2015)

“To hear him slowly open the valves of Chopin’s poetry, aerate Schubert’s lyricism and launch Schumann’s fantasies makes you aware of his layered artistry… Everything in this programme was thoroughly considered, but such is the intelligence of his approach his audience rapport never sounded calculated…his transformation of Schubert’s intricate decorative passages that acquire a life of their own was masterly. Just as admirable was the control and tact with which he discerned the difference between the up-front and explicit Schubert and music much more shadowy and recessive… The Third of the set, the ‘Rosamunde’ variations in B flat, confirmed Volodin’s affinity for Schubert in playing of formidable perception, expressive tonal range and superb delicacy.” (Peter Reed, Classical Source, June 2015)

“His sensitive approach to the Allegretto revealed an extremely delicate and clear touch that veiled the difficulty of the score.” (Georges Masson, Le Républicain Lorrain, January 2015)

“There was a wonderful sense of emotion; the sound had a floating quality mingled with marked contrasts in dynamics and touch which added to the colour and brilliance.” (Jorge de Persia, La Vanguardia, May 2014)

“Ravel’s Miroirs [were] vividly characterised – sweet languor for ‘Oiseaux tristes’, crackling energy for ‘Alborada del gracioso’. And his Chopin encores glittered.” (Michael Church, The Independent, January 2014)

“Since Alexei Volodin won the Géza Anda Competition in Zurich in 2003, he has become part of the world elite. He shows an impressive sensitivity of touch, and a dynamic and dramatic breadth of expression… it's difficult to remember when we heard these pieces better played. Alexei Volodin demonstrates that he is one of the great pianists of our time.” (Carsten Dürer, PIANONews, May/June 2013)

“Alexei Volodin was the sensational soloist in the Prokofiev – a hard-hitting, edgy performance in which he played with staggering technique and furious accuracy”. (Tim Ashley, The Guardian, March 2013)

“Volodin offered the thrilling performance that this work required; a total success”. (Xavier Pujol, El Paìs, May 2012)

 “...the outer movements crackled with energy, while the minuet had the sweetest cantabile… Stravinsky’s Petrushka allowed this coolly relaxed young player to push virtuosity to the limits, delivering perfectly controlled explosions of notes, and turning raucous discords into wild beauty. Each of Volodin’s four encores, including a brilliant jazz number, was a winner, with a late Chopin Nocturne setting the exquisite final seal.” (The Independent, June 2012)

“ …working on a large scale, with natural phrasing and thoughtful rubato, he showed his persuasive pianism.” (Ongaku No Tomo, March 2012)

“The Russian Alexei Volodin and the SWR Symphony Orchestra under Kirill Karabits performed Liszt's first piano concerto and his "Totentanz".  Volodin brought not just technical brilliance but other qualities, heard also in the encore, a Chopin nocturne, in which he made each note ring out like bells...a small miracle.” (Neue Luzerner Zeitung, November 2011)

“He has terrific technique, and proved a consummate interpreter of Prokofiev's bruising concerto with its pounding octaves and triplet rhythms and swelling gales of orchestral accompaniment...The audience found itself holding its breath as the opening andante-allegro reached a thrilling crescendo, and smiling at the whirligig of fairground sound in the second movement and the epic swell of the final allegro.” (Liverpool Echo, September 2011)

“Master pianist Alexei Volodin is a virtuoso. Impressive, and not purely for effect in Prokofiev's Piano Concerto No. 3. Constantly jumping solos, chord progressions, lightning fast runs and cross over figures are demanded. This was no problem for Volodin; who was percussive and precise where needed, individually or with orchestra, reliably and with demonstrative love of the music, the witty, the grotesque. After the final gallop, the conductor clasped his hand...testifying his respect for the pianist.” (Daily Gazette, June 2011)