Behzod Abduraimov
Piano

“He can thunder, but he played Tchaikovsky's fast and furious passages not like a challenge but an almost serene joy. He is a pleasure to hear.” (Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times)

Contacts

Katie Cardell-Oliver +44 (0)20 3725 9149
Arnold Klugkist +44 (0)20 3725 9106

Biography

Behzod Abduraimov’s captivating performances are rapidly establishing him as one of the forerunners of his generation.

In recent seasons Behzod has worked with leading orchestras including Los Angeles Philharmonic (James Gaffigan), Boston Symphony Orchestra (Charles Dutoit), London Philharmonic Orchestra (David Zinman), NHK Symphony Orchestra (Vladimir Ashkenazy) and the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra (Jiří Bělohlávek).

In collaboration with The Mariinsky Orchestra and Valery Gergiev, last season Behzod performed in their Prokofiev Piano Concerto cycle at concerts in Stockholm, Vienna and Dortmund and on a major US tour with them, which included his concerto debut at Carnegie Hall. This was followed by his recital debut in the Weill Hall as part of the “Distinctive Debuts” series resulting in an immediate re-invitation to the Stern Auditorium.

Behzod Abduraimov’s captivating performances are rapidly establishing him as one of the forerunners of his generation.

In recent seasons Behzod has worked with leading orchestras including Los Angeles Philharmonic (James Gaffigan), Boston Symphony Orchestra (Charles Dutoit), London Philharmonic Orchestra (David Zinman), NHK Symphony Orchestra (Vladimir Ashkenazy) and the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra (Jiří Bělohlávek).

In collaboration with The Mariinsky Orchestra and Valery Gergiev, last season Behzod performed in their Prokofiev Piano Concerto cycle at concerts in Stockholm, Vienna and Dortmund and on a major US tour with them, which included his concerto debut at Carnegie Hall. This was followed by his recital debut in the Weill Hall as part of the “Distinctive Debuts” series resulting in an immediate re-invitation to the Stern Auditorium.

Behzod’s upcoming highlights include concert debuts with the Münchner Philharmoniker and Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra (Valery Gergiev), Gewandhausorchester Leipzig (Semyon Bychkov), Dallas Symphony (James Gaffigan), Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France (Vasily Petrenko) and the Seattle Symphony (Vassily Sinaisky). In recital Behzod is a featured artist for the Junge Wilde series at the Konzerthaus Dortmund for the next three years, and also gives recitals at Wigmore Hall, Salle Gaveau, MünchenMusik and AMG Konzerte Basel. In the US, recitals include the People’s Symphony Concerts, New York; Tuesday Evening Concert Series, Shriver Hall Concert Series, Spivey Hall and the Washington Performing Arts Series.

Behzod is an alumnus of Park University’s International Center for Music where he studied with Stanislav Ioudenitch, and now serves as the ICM’s artist-in-residence.

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Contacts

Katie Cardell-Oliver +44 (0)20 3725 9149
Arnold Klugkist +44 (0)20 3725 9106

Reviews

“This performance (of Saint-Saëns second Piano Concerto) was notable for less-flashy things - his wonderfully floating thirds in the long, mostly slow opening movement, his light touch and witty subtleties in the tuneful scherzo and the precise little trills in the finale.” (Richard S. Ginell, Los Angeles Times, April 2016)

“This is a pianist who has it all: silky delicacy, mighty thunder-power, rare clarity and the ability to draw a remarkable variety of tonal colors from the instrument. All this is combined with a technical finesse that negotiates the concerto’s (Rachmaninov Piano Concerto No. 2) considerable challenges with stunning ease.” (Melinda Bargreen, Seattle Times, January 2016)

“Some of Mr. Abduraimov’s peers might see Liszt’s “Mephisto Waltz” as a chance to pose, but he abjured, calm and confident enough not to add unnecessary spark to an already heated work (…)  in that piece’s devilish torrents of notes there was a clarity of balancing that showed an ability to give each note its due ... In demeanor and musicianship alike, here is a pianist who is no-nonsense, yet never nondescript.” (New York Times, December 2015)

“This performance (of Saint-Saëns second Piano Concerto) was notable for less-flashy things - his wonderfully floating thirds in the long, mostly slow opening movement, his light touch and witty subtleties in the tuneful scherzo and the precise little trills in the finale.” (Richard S. Ginell, Los Angeles Times, April 2016)

“This is a pianist who has it all: silky delicacy, mighty thunder-power, rare clarity and the ability to draw a remarkable variety of tonal colors from the instrument. All this is combined with a technical finesse that negotiates the concerto’s (Rachmaninov Piano Concerto No. 2) considerable challenges with stunning ease.” (Melinda Bargreen, Seattle Times, January 2016)

“Some of Mr. Abduraimov’s peers might see Liszt’s “Mephisto Waltz” as a chance to pose, but he abjured, calm and confident enough not to add unnecessary spark to an already heated work (…)  in that piece’s devilish torrents of notes there was a clarity of balancing that showed an ability to give each note its due ... In demeanor and musicianship alike, here is a pianist who is no-nonsense, yet never nondescript.” (New York Times, December 2015)

“To play Schubert’s four impromptus with such depth and maturity is quite astounding for a 24 year-old.” (Ruhr Nachrichten, September 2015)

“Abduraimov’s playing made a great impression, full of dynamics and responsiveness with a crystalline touch.” (NRC Handelsblad, September 2015)

“There is no one like Abduraimov who scrutinises with such depth the underworld of the score." (Diapason, July/August 2015)

“He brought fluid fingerwork, lots of dash and appealing impetuosity to his performance of Prokofiev’s popular piece with its famously daunting piano part” (Anthony Tommasini, New York Times, January 2015)

“The Uzbek pianist is the master of all he surveys. He tackles Tchaikovsky with aplomb and plays with grandeur and depth.” (Geoff Brown, The Times, September 2014)

“He can thunder, but he played Tchaikovsky's fast and furious passages not like a challenge but an almost serene joy. He is a pleasure to hear.” (Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times, July 2014)

“He played with impressive poise and immediacy, navigating the quiet passage work of Rachmaninoff’s much-loved Rhapsody with a certain feline grace but also displaying an unforced strength sufficient to project boldly above the orchestra when necessary. He is a talent to watch.” (Jeremy Eichler, The Boston Globe, April 2014)

“[In] his reading of Schubert’s G-flat Impromptu … [Abduraimov] managed to enclose all the coiled force of his power and talent within a glass bubble, holding it suspended on the crest of a wave of power without dislodging or breaking it… It’s rather exceptional to encounter a young whiz-bang virtuoso and feel that his strongest suit is Schubert. I’m not sure I could give higher praise. Keep your ear on this one.” (Anne Midgette, The Washington Post, December 2013)

“[Abduraimov’s] recital at the Queen Elizabeth Hall was the venue’s best of the year. This young Uzbek, who burst on the scene when he won the London International Piano Competition, seems equal to any challenge.” (Michael Church, International Piano, March/April 2013)

“Abduraimov delivers a perfect legato touch. Shimmeringly decorative up-and-down-scale figurations adorn tuneful melodies, all nicely nuanced, sparkling with energy, drive and verve.” (Tom Aldridge, NUVO (Indianapolis), March 2013)

“Youth exploded as sheer genius in the form of the Tashkent-born (1990) Behzod Abduraimov’s recent appearance here [International Piano Series, Southbank Centre, London]. While the lyric line of his Schubert Sonata in A, D664, was effortless and consummate, his Beethoven Appassionata Sonata was so vehemently expressive that he seemed to be taking music off the very edges of the keyboard, himself nearly falling from his seat. He impressed, too, with ultra-virtuosic Liszt in the second half. But spontaneity, not “cleverness”, was the dominant note.” (Paul Driver, The Sunday Times, December 2012)

“His Danse Macabre sends chills down the spine, and the Mephisto Waltz is utterly engaging, presented with rock-solid technique. Similarly, Prokofiev’s Piano Sonata No 6 and Liszt’s Bénédiction de Dieu dans la solitude reveal Abduraimov’s intellectual curiosity and an artistry that can only blossom.” (International Piano Magazine, September 2012)

“He has the neuro-motor responses of a jungle cat and the energy reserves of an Olympic athlete on peak form…It is easy to imagine how thrilling the Prokofiev Third Concerto, with which Abduraimov won his First Prize in the 2009 London International Competition, must have been...Abduraimov’s Danse macabre glitters like a diamond: clean, pristine and capable of cutting through glass.” (International Record Review, September 2012)

“...a light, transparent touch and immaculately controlled pyrotechnics...La benediction de Dieu is conceived with such refined attention to pace and detail that the poetry is fully released, with the sound possessing a silky sheen; the Mephisto Waltz is a reminder of the high-octane virtuosity which brought him to international attention in the first place.” (BBC Music Magazine, August 2012)

“Here is a good-themed programme from this 20-year-old Uzbek newcomer of ‘demonic dances, God and war, combining technical virtuosity with music fireworks’ … he’s a new face on the scene with bags of talent whose future will be well worth following.” (Jeremy Nicholas, Gramophone, August 2012)

“His debut disc naturally includes plenty that shows off his virtuosity, but music of greater emotional complexity lies at the heart of his programme. Prokofiev’s Sixth Sonata, a complex mix of mood, has kaleidoscopic colour, fierce intensity and, notably in that aching slow-movement waltz, genuine soul.” (The Sunday Times, July 2012)

“Abduraimov is a young master, that is clear...[the disc features] some of the most limpid piano playing these ears have recently heard...The cavernous roar from Abduraimov’s Steinway beggars belief at some points...[he delivers] Liszt’s Mephisto Waltz No 1 in another tumultuous performance. For someone still so young, Abduraimov commands both registers with awesome ease. There’s a big natural talent at work here.” (The Times, June 2012)

“His Danse Macabre has a neurotic, sinister air...and he tackles Prokofiev's Piano Sonata No 6 with both youthful eagerness and maturity. That maturity is even more evident in Liszt's reflective Bénédiction de Dieu dans la Solitude, whose subtle shifts of timing and emphasis he negotiates with apparently effortless command.” (The Independent, June 2012)

“Two years ago, the London press went as far as comparing Abduraimov with the legendary Vladimir Horowitz and putting him near the head of the queue to make Lang Lang’s pedestal wobble. Abduraimov’s performance of the Liszt/Horowitz arrangement of Saint-Saens’ Danse Macabre substantiated their meaning: the technical challenges were met with jaw-dropping ease, a complete absence of shallow showmanship and a masterly control of the dynamics...” (South China Morning Post, March 2012) 

“Abduraimov showed fearless athleticism matched with pearly articulacy. Abduraimov effortlessly nourished the mood and length of Liszt’s Benediction de Dieu dans la Solitude while stressed on the tonal beauty of the piece, totally spell-binding. Liszt’s Mephisto Waltz No. 1 was equally stunning with scrupulous timing, nicely judged rubato and thoughtful poetry. Age 21 or not, this recital was an outstanding Hong Kong debut!” (Time Out Hong Kong, March 2012)

“Just 21, Abduraimov played with the authority and insight of an arrived master, informing everything with extraordinary tonal beauty and expressiveness...concertgoers on Friday could not contain themselves after the first movement. Even conductor Alexander Lazarev joined in the spontaneous eruption of applause for Abduraimov.” (The West Australian, March 2012)

Discography