<< -- 2 -- Gordon Rumson VLADISLAV KOVALSKY
These ideals, shared by the teachers and artists who lived,
worked and created the atmosphere of the St Petersburg Conservatory,
manifested themselves in techniques and methods, but above all,
outlook. Music was conceived not as a mere tournament, or entertainment,
nor as expression of the performer, or even recreation of the
composer's notational intention (though music could be any of
those things as well), but as a profound search for the perfect
sound; the perfect realization of the composers' highest ideal
through the medium of the piano.
This may seem vague and vaguely suspect, but the St Petersburg
tradition also insured that it did not devolve into idle fancy
by grounding itself on severe standards of technique and professionalism.
Technique was not a goal, but an absolute necessity for the attainment
of the ideal.
Without question, Vladislav Kovalsky is one of the most compelling
representatives of this tradition in America today. A pianist
of thorough training, he studied in St Petersburg in the late
1960s with Nathan Perelman. He is an artist of deep insight and
his repertoire extends from the Baroque to the Modern.
What he brings to piano playing is a deep seriousness and almost
philosophic reverence for the sound of the piano.
Listen -- example 1 --
Scriabin: Poem Op 32 No 1
(Live performance. Musical Mosaic 15, 23 November
2003, Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Engineered by Harold Harrison and
Gordon Rumson. Used with permission. Steinway and Sons Piano courtesy
of Irene Besse Keyboards Ltd.)
Copyright © 25 March 2004
Gordon Rumson, Calgary, Canada