Violinist Vengerov returns to Seoul
By Do Je-hae
Maxim Vengerov has been more of a conductor in recent years, taking a break from the violin due to a shoulder injury in 2008.
As the popular Russian virtuoso has not played here in eight years, his forthcoming recital in Seoul is a source of excitement for local violin fans.
His performance on May 1 will be the highlight of the Seoul Spring Festival of Chamber Music from April 30 through May 13, organizers said Friday.
“Vengerov is ready to re-launch his solo career as he is on a smooth path to recovery. During the festival, the violinist will give a solo recital, besides participating in some chamber music performances,” Rose Kwon, the PR manager for the event’s organizing committee said in a statement. “Conducting has added new depth and sensitivity to his violin-playing.”
The 37-year-old virtuoso will deliver a program of two sonatas by Handel and Beethoven, with a D minor Bach solo partita in between.
This recital is expected to be a departure from the fiery Vengerov performance that fans are used to.
His is known for a jaw-dropping technique and a deeply emotional playing that is most suitably displayed in the passionate works of the Russian and Nordic masters, such as Tchaikovsky, Shostakovich, Sibelius and Nielsen.
During the break from the violin, Vengerov has developed as a more mature artist through his engagements as a conductor.
He also learned to play the viola in two weeks, after hearing the Walton viola concerto and to fulfill his wish to make a recording of the work.
The Grammy Award winner has been has been a professor at the Royal Academy of Music in London since 2005 and served as the chairman of the jury of the prestigious Henryk Wieniawski Violin Competition in Poland.
Besides Venerov, the festival will bring together 180 gifted artists, including the Paris-based violinist Kang Dong-suk as well as Shin A-ra and Wayne Lin who are leading members of the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra.
Since its launch in 2006, the festival has become one of the milestones in the local chamber music community.
The event also highlights master classes, free outdoor concerts at the famous Deoksu Palace, as well as family concerts blending renowned maestros and rising talent.
Tickets range from 30,000 to 100,000 won. For more information, call 02-712-4879 visit www.seoulspring.org.