Behzod Abduraimov’s captivating performances are rapidly establishing him as one of the forerunners of his generation.
Recent seasons have seen Behzod work with leading orchestras worldwide such as the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Boston Symphony, NHK Symphony and Leipzig Gewandhaus orchestras, and prestigious conductors including Valery Gergiev, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Manfred Honeck, Vasily Petrenko, James Gaffigan, Jakub Hrůša and Vladimir Jurowski.
Following his spectacular debut at the BBC Proms with the Münchner Philharmoniker under Gergiev in July 2016, Behzod immediately returned in July 2017. This was followed by his debut at the Festspielhaus Baden-Baden and Rheingau Musik Festivals.
Upcoming European highlights include the Lucerne Festival, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Münchner Philharmoniker, hr-Sinfonieorchester, Philharmonia, Czech Philharmonic, and BBC Symphony orchestras. In recital he is one of the featured artists for the Junge Wilde series at the Konzerthaus Dortmund and will be presented in recital at the main halls of the Barbican, London, and Concertgebouw, Amsterdam. Behzod will also collaborate in recital with the cellist Truls Mørk, which will see them on tour in Europe and the US.
In North America Behzod appears at the Hollywood Bowl, Blossom and Ravinia Festivals. He will make his debut with the San Francisco Symphony and returns to both the Dallas and Atlanta Symphony Orchestras. Last season, Behzod gave his Stern Auditorium recital following his debut success at Carnegie Hall in 2015 and has appeared in concerts with the Houston Symphony and Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre symphonique de Montréal and the Minnesota Orchestra.
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.
“He has technique in spades, playing close to the keys without the need for extravagant gesture, applied at the service of musical sensitivity and sensibility, with an attention to detail and emotional engagement that made the Prokofiev piece sparkle.”
“He has the ability to justify experiments and risks, and the results were compelling. […]Abduraimov is something of a piano whisperer, an approach that worked wonders with Liszt’s transcription of the ‘Liebestod’, which in his caressing performance, full of shimmering tremolandos and voice-leading of inimitable delicacy, transcended its orchestral origin as surely as Isolde’s love transcended Tristan’s death. […] His velocity is fearless, secure and stupendously even, but it was the moments when he led the music into the furthest recesses of romantic isolation – to the extent that you wondered if it would ever find its way out – that you got the measure of a musician fully equipped with an imagination synchronised with the composer’s astounding harmonic, thematic and spiritual plan.”
“The diagnosis is clear: pianist Abduraimov can do anything. The Uzbek pianist Behzod Abduraimov made two dream debuts in Amsterdam this week. His secret: authenticity, control and a velvet pianissimo.”
“Not very many pianists have chosen the tougher cadenza. The mighty Horowitz didn’t. Even Rachmaninoff himself didn’t in his 1939 – 40 recording. Abduraimov did, plunging in with a smashing, unified account full of fire that also left room for subtle touches and finally the most delicate of arpeggios. Abduraimov triumphed again”
“Pianist Behzod Abduraimov, gave a high-octane performance on his Cleveland Orchestra debut that infused the well-known score with all kinds of fresh life and energy. On technical terms alone, Abduraimov’s reading was a knockout. But it was on expressive terms that Abduraimov shone brightest. In the second movement, his steely, swift fingers made dashing work of the Prestissimo but also deferred to a tender, smooth personality one could have attended for ages.”
“From the initial call to arms, through supple lyrical passages and contrasting massive sound-walls of contrapuntal dissonance, Abduraimov outlined this work’s path with bravado and intelligence: one of the year’s most memorable performances.”
“This young man brought jaw-dropping brilliance to Saint-Saëns’ best loved piano concerto with its challenging changes of pace. Abduraimov showed his supreme skill with fingers flowing freely across the octaves. Without a hint of outrageous exuberance he produced an exhilarating performance to be followed immediately by his most favoured encore.”
“He dispatched “Islamey” faster than anyone I’ve heard, his forearms a hummingbird blur in the grueling passagework. His maturity was evident in his reading of Beethoven’s “Appassionata” Sonata, which balanced dramatic thrust with a wonderful sense of flow. His sound has an appealing warmth even in the most testosterone-fueled outbursts.”
“For the rest we got a meticulously controlled account of Ravel’s Bolero, and a performance of “Rach Three” by a young Uzbek born to play it. Behzod Abduraimov brought a singing tenderness to the opening, sensitively commanding leadership to the piano-and-orchestra conversations, and infectious brilliance to the finale.”
“In between, young Uzbekistani pianist Behzod Abduraimov proved a hugely impressive soloist in Rachmaninov’s Third Piano Concerto, technically in total command, poetic and stormingly rousing as the music demanded.”
“In Rachmaninov’s Third Piano Concerto we always had Abduraimov to enjoy. The wonder pianist from Uzbekistan, in his mid-twenties, shaped and stroked his opening phrases with supple beauty and rapture, gorgeous to hear.”
“With Rachmaninov’s 3rd Piano concerto, we came back to the world of real music. The Uzbek-born and now American-resident pianist Behzod Abduraimov launched the piece beautifully, lending an unusually introverted tone to that wonderful opening melody. The silvery passagework that followed had a wonderful musing quality, as if Abduraimov had all the time in the world. Whenever the concerto turned towards intimacy his performance came to light.”
(The Telegraph, Ivan Hewitt, July 2016)
“Abduraimov articulates the manic , frantic passages with stupendous technique , fluent and striking … always in resilient interplay with the colours of the excellent performance from the orchestra. Abduraimov is phenomenal.”
“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”
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