Ilya Yakushev

Ilya Yakushev

Russian pianist Ilya Yakushev made an impression on the New York Times in 2007. A concert review of a performance at Alice Tully Hall on 65th Street left no doubt as to his talent.

Of course, Yakushev had already proven it two years early when he won the 2005 World Piano Competition.

“Mr. Yakushev showed superb control, bringing the music to the brink of hysteria and the piano’s capacity for noise making, without ever letting it get away from him,” the reviewer wrote of his performance of Prokofiev. “And he was able to make a repeated single note resound more pointedly than the fabric of quieter chords surrounding it.”

Yakushev, who has played venues across the world for more than two decades, is coming to Safford on Jan. 19, hosted by the Gila Valley Arts Council.

In the 2018-19 season, Yakushev performed as piano soloist with Edmonton Symphony, Cheyenne Symphony, Zacatecas Symphony, and Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra in addition to more than 50 recitals in North America and Europe.

The 2019–20 season included return appearances with Millikin-Decatur Symphony, St. Petersburg Philharmonic, Fairfield County Orchestra, Fort Wayne Philharmonic, Zacatecas Symphony, and Hunterdon Symphony.

In past seasons, he has performed in various prestigious venues worldwide, from his native St. Petersburg to Victoria Hall in Singapore.

In a 2019 interview with the Arkansas Democrat, Yakushev said he started playing piano at age 6, but, “I did not love the piano right away. Please do not believe anyone who says that their kid LOVED the piano from the beginning.”

But, he said he liked the music and the sound of the instrument.

He attended the Rimsky-Korsakov College of Music in St. Petersburg, Russia, and came to New York City in 2000 to attend Mannes College of Music, where he studied with pianist Vladimir Feltsman.

Load comments