Life – Igor Levit, piano (Sony 542445)
Igor Levit’s new album Life is an imaginary recital with a vast emotional range - from tender intimacy (Schumann’s ‘Ghost’ Variations, Bill Evans’s Peace Piece) to the sublime and monumental (the Liszt-Busoni Fantasy and Fugue on ‘Ad nos’). This celebrated pianist and impassioned intellectual poses as a spirited guide to regions of music that ask the big questions of human existence – questions about meaning and permanence, inner peace, memory and redemption. On Life, Levit reflects at the keyboard on the experience of loss, hovering between grief and despair, resignation and solace. He has chosen works whose bleak grandeur and melancholy beauty have occupied him for years. Each of them is a tribute to the virtuosic potential of the piano. Poetic moments of quiet contemplation confront life-affirming, highly sensual music of immediate spellbinding physicality. Levit’s deliberately subjective selection effortlessly crosses borders between eras, styles and genres, offering a multitude of new discoveries. More than ever before, you appreciate the individuality and immense curiosity of an artist who has already set standards with some of the supreme masterpieces of Bach and Beethoven.