"Eckardstein manages to execute the blinding juxtaposition of divergent energies. Eckardstein's playing, by turns, has been volcanic, impassioned, and occasionally understated, and always lyrically informed. "Fanfare, 31-1-2022
Prokofiev’s music has always been close to my heart.
In his childhood, the Russian composer loved to improvise on the piano, just as I did. His piano style was not as sprawling as, say, that of Rachmaninov, his contemporary. Yet it was all the more flexible, capable of instantly morphing to reflect current events – a style at times fresh and charged with energy, at others suddenly brooding.
Prokofiev’s music was stylistically multilayered from the onset, here and there juxtaposing melodies of a Classical bent with irony, self-deprecation, and driving rhythmic impulse. His skillful formal mastery and his unquenchable thirst for drama derived from opera, and always served him as a striking, never-ending source of inspiration.
In its impressive cohesion and vitality, Prokofiev’s piano output elaborately intermingles a variety of surprising moments where a touch of human feeling sneaks up on the listener, thereby revealing striking sincerity and profound inner feeling. Far from consisting in episodes of post-Romantic bathos, these are moments of bleak, violent despair.
Take, for example, the emotional outbreaks and the instances of sudden, hushed introversion in Prokofiev’s Second Piano Concerto, written prior to the Russian Revolution.
(Excerpt from the liner notes by the artist)
Severin von Eckardstein, one of the leading German pianists of his generation, has delighted the public with many highly acclaimed concerts, e.g. in Berlin, Moscow, Madrid, London, Paris, New York, Amsterdam, Budapest, Hong Kong, Tokyo and Seoul. His talent could be enjoyed at renown music festivals, including Ruhr Piano Festival, La Roque d’Anthéron in France, Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival and the Miami International Piano Festival, where he played the opening concert in 2009.
He has performed with conductors such as Valery Gergiev, Philippe Herreweghe, Lothar Zagrosek and
Marek Janowski, and made important debuts, among others in 2007 (Amsterdam under Paavo Järvi),
Dallas (under Jaap van Zweden), Budaypest (under Zsolt Hamar). During the European lockdown in
November 20 he debuted with Mariinsky Orchestra (under Valery Gergiev) and the Ural Philhamonic
in Yekaterinburg, Russia.
As a frequent guest of the concert series Meesterpianisten at Concertgebouw Amsterdam, he was reinvited to this extraordinary series for the 8th time in 2020.
Von Eckardstein won prizes at numerous noteworthy international competitions, e.g. Ferruccio Busoni in Bozen (1998), Leeds International Piano Competition (2000), ARD-Competition in Munich (1999) and was awarded first prize at the Concours Reine Elisabeth in Brussels (2003).
Musically educated by Prof. Barbara Szczepanska, Prof. Karl-Heinz Kämmerling, Prof. Klaus Hellwig and at the International Piano Academy Lake Como, he himself has been serving as master class instructor on many occasions, among others in South Korea, Finland, Belgium and at the UdK, Berlin.
In 2015 he founded the chamber concert series Klangbrücken at Konzerthaus Berlin together with violinist Franziska Hölscher.
CD recordings with compositions by Medtner, Scriabin, Wagner, Schubert, Schumann, Debussy and others are highly regarded. His latest album of Dupont´s cycle La maison dans les dunes was awarded with Diapason d´Or.
Eckardstein manages to execute the blinding juxtaposition of divergent energies.
Eckardstein's playing, by turns, has been volcanic, impassioned, and occasionally understated, and always lyrically informed.
Suddenly you end up in a forest full of dissenting voices that leave room for much, much more nuances and dancing flexibility.
De Nieuwe Muze, 01-10-2021