Igor Levit - On Dsch
Label: SONY CLASSICAL
Pianist Igor Levit's new album, "ON DSCH" presents two great piano cycles at once: Shostakovich's 24 Preludes and Fugues op. 87 and the virtuosic, rarely heard "Passacaglia on DSCH" by British composer Ronald Stevenson The title of the 3-CD album, "D S C H," comes from the German note names that form Dmitri Shostakovich's resounding monogram. "On DSCH" is a discographic feat, the likes of which even Igor Levit has not yet accomplished in this form. The complete performance of Dmitry Shostakovich's "24 Preludes and Fugues", completed in 1951, lasts around two and a half hours. Levit has already presented this work with enormous success in important concert halls around the world, including the Berlin Philharmonie. Levit describes the "24 Preludes and Fugues" as "a kind of sounding diary". "I find the combination of warmth, immediacy and pure solitude in Shostakovich's 48 pieces to be something quite unique," says the pianist. "For me, it's a ritual of self-exploration and self-discovery that negotiates the most intimate questions." Scottish composer Ronald Stevenson's "Passacaglia on DSCH" is a brilliant series of variations lasting over an hour, Stevenson's most important work, building on the DSCH theme. For Levit, it is "... a true compendium of life, music that tells of our responsibility to the world as a whole." Levit has worked on both cycles over many years; he has presented them several times in concert since 2017 and 2018 respectively. Each of these concerts has been hailed as an exceptional achievement. The album's artwork design by internationally renowned artist and graphic designer Christoph Niemann, who regularly works for the "New Yorker" and the "New York Times", among others, offers a playful, abstract counterpart to this musical experience.