Georgian pianist

Eliso Virsaladze plays with unhurried grace and charm.  Her Mozart and Schubert are of exceptional beauty.  Her Schumann is gorgeous - Sviatoslav Ricther is said to have loved her Schumann - and her Brahms stunning.  She has exquisite control and a warm, luscious tone.

Her teacher was her grandmother, Anastasia Virsaladze, herself a pupil of Anna Yesipova and a prominent pianist and highly respected piano teacher in Tbilisi.  At the age of 19, as the story goes, Anastasia phoned Yakov Zak to ask a favor.  Would he allow Eliso to audition for him?  The audition led to Eliso's participation in the 1962 Tchaikovsky competition where she won third prize. Two pianists shared first prize that year: Vladimir Ashkenazy and John Ogdon.  Eliso Virsaladze received irregular instruction from Yakov Zak and Heinrich Neuhaus, and won the first prize in the Schumann Competition in 1966.

Eliso Virsaladze has taught piano at the Moscow Conservatory since 1967 and was nominated professor in 1994.  Since 1995, she has also taught at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Munich.  Among her many well known students are Boris Berezovsky and Ekaterina Voskresenskaya.

I would single out one performance on this page, not because it is particularly better than the others, they are all fabulous, but because it is of a fairly large scale work by Chopin that I have, until hearing Eliso Virsaladze play it, never fully appreciated.  I speak of the Polonaise-Fantaisie, Op 61.  I listened to innumerable performances of this piece over the last fifty years, but never has anyone offered me one that made of this complex and seemingly disjointed work the intensely passionate dramatic expression that I now see that it is.

Eliso Virsaladze is a brightly burning star in the pianistic firmament, the equal of any, and the better of most.

Follow the link Virsaladze plays Concerti to hear her numerous recorded performances with orchestra.

Virsaladze plays Bach and Schumann in Concert

Bach, J.S. The Well-Tempered Clavier Book I

Prelude & Fugue 1 in C major (BWV 846)
Prelude & Fugue 2 in C minor (BWV 847)
Prelude & Fugue 3 in C major (BWV 848)
Prelude & Fugue 4 in C minor (BWV 849)
Prelude & Fugue No. 5 in D major (BWV 850)
Prelude & Fugue No. 6 in D minor (BWV 851)
Prelude & Fugue No. 7 in E Major (BWV 852)
Prelude & Fugue No. 8 in E Minor (BWV 853)

Schumann  Carnaval, Op.9

recorded live at the moscow Conservatory in 2011

00:56 ➢ Haydn  Piano Concerto in D major (Hob XVIII:11)
ii Un poco adagio
09:08 ➢ Mozart  Rondo in A minor, K 511
19:19 ➢ Shostakovich  Prelude & Fugue in D major, Op 87~15
24:32 ➢ Schumann  Carnaval, Op 9

recorded live in 1975

Mozart  from Piano Sonata 8 in A major, K 310

i Allegro maestoso

ii Andante cantabile con espressione

iii Presto

Mozart  Piano Sonata 10 in C major, K 330
i Allegro moderato
06:02ii Andante cantabile
11:04iii Allegretto

Mozart  from Piano Sonata 11 in A major, K 331
iii Rondo Alla Turca: Allegretto

Mozart  Piano Sonata 12 in C major, K 332
i Allegro
04:41ii Adagio
09:07iii Allegro assai

recorded in 2013

Eliso Virsaladze plays Mozart and Prokofiev in concert

05:10 ➢ Mozart  Fantasy in C minor, K 475

Mozart  Piano Sonata 14 in C minor, K 457
17:05i Allegro
23:08ii Adagio
30:53iii Molto allegro

Prokofiev  Piano Sonata 2 in D minor, Op 14 (1912)
35:33i Allegro ma non troppo
41:43ii Scherzo: Allegro marcato
43:34iii Andante
48:45iv Vivace

filmed live on 12.21.2011

Schubert  Impromptus, D 935, Op posth 142

1 Allegro moderato in F minor
9:562 Allegretto in A major
16:503 Andante con variazioni in B major
27:144 Allegro scherzando in F minor

recorded live in 1995

Eliso Virsaladze plays Schubert in concert

Adagio in E major, D 612
➢ Zwolf Grazer Walzer, D 924

Piano Sonata in A major, D 664
14:22i Allegro Moderato
25:55ii Andante
30:28iii Allegro

38:04 ➢ Allegretto in C minor, D 915

Drei Klavierstucke, D 946
1 Allegro Assai
56:302 Allegretto
1:08:053 Allegro

recorded live in 1997

Schubert-Liszt "Der Erlkönig"

recorded live in London

Chopin Recital

09:12 ➢ Polonaise-Fantaisie op.61

22:12Piano Sonata 3 in B minor, Op 58
i Allegro maestoso - ii Scherzo: Molto vivace - iii Largo - iv Finale: Presto non tanto. Agitato

1:00:31 ➢ Scherzo 3, Op 39
1:08:22 ➢ Etude in C minor, Op 25~7
1:13:48 ➢ Ballade 2 in F major, Op 38
1:21:11 ➢ Nocturne 14 in F minor, Op 48~2
1:28:28 ➢ Ballade 3 in A major, Op 47
1:35:50 ➢ Polonaise 6 in A major, Op 53
1:44:07 ➢ Nocturne 2 in E major Op 9~2

recorded live in 2010

Chopin  24 Études,

12 Études, Op 10

1 in C major
02:102 in A minor
03:383 in E major
08:204 in C minor
10:225 in G major
11:596 in E minor
15:547 in C major
17:248 in F major
19:469 in F minor
21:4710 in A major
23:5711 in E major
26:2312 in C minor

12 Études, Op. 25

28:551 in A major
31:192 in F minor
32:543 in F major
34:424 in A minor
36:165 in E minor
39:336 in G minor
41:377 in C minor
47:268 in D major
48:349 in G major
49:3610 in B minor
53:4811 in A minor
57:3212 in C minor

recorded in the early 1970s

Chopin  Nocturne 8 in D♭ major, Op 27~2

Chopin  Waltzes

in A major, Op 34~1

recorded live in 2011

9 in A-flat major, Op 69~1

Chopin  Mazurkas

in C minor, Op 30~4
3:36 ➢ in D major, Op 33~2

in A Minor, Op 68~2
recorded live in 2011

Schumann  Novellette 8 in F minor, Op 21~8
first part only

Schumann  from Fantasie in C major, Op 17

Im Legendenton
from i
Durchaus fantastisch und leidenschaftlich vorzutragen; Im Legenden-Ton

Erstes Tempo from
Durchaus fantastisch und leidenschaftlich vorzutragen; Im Legenden-Ton

ii Mäßig. Durchaus energisch

Eliso Virsaladze plays Schumann in concert I

Piano Sonata 1 in F minor, Op 11
i Introduzione: Un poco Adagio - Allegro vivace
12:20ii Aria
15:54iii Scherzo: Allegrissimo - intermezzo: Lento
20:11iv Finale: Allegro, un poco maestoso

Piano Sonata 2 in G minor, Op 22
31:23i So rasch wie möglich. schneller. noch schneller
37:30ii Andantino. Getragen
➢ iii Scherzo: Sehr rasch und marquiert
44:23 ➢ iv Rondo: Presto

Waldszenen, Op 82
49:55 ➢ Eintritt - 52:13 ➢ Jäger auf der Lauer - 53:15 ➢ Einsame Blumen
55:37 ➢ Verrufene Stelle - 59:30 ➢ Freundliche Landschaft - 1:00:40 ➢ Herberge
1:03:07 ➢ Vogel als Prophet - 1:06:06 ➢ Jagdlied - 1:08:17 ➢ Abschied

recorded live in 1973 and 1980

Eliso Virsaladze plays Schumann in concert II

Fantasiestücke, Op 12
Des abends - 03:25 ➢ Aufschwung - 06:31 ➢ Warum ? - 09:11 ➢ Grillen
12:22 ➢ In der Nacht - 16:00 ➢ Fabel - 18:33 ➢ Traumeswirren - 20:59 ➢ Ende vom Lied

Kreisleriana, Op 16
26:21 ➢ Äußerst bewegt - 28:38 ➢ Sehr innig und nicht zu rasch
37:55 ➢ Sehr aufgeregt - 41:54 ➢ Sehr langsam - 45:05 ➢ Sehr lebhaft
47:58 ➢ Sehr langsam - 51:41 ➢ Sehr rasch - 53:40 ➢ Schnell und spielend

recorded live in 1994

Eliso Virsaladze plays Schumann in concert III

03:48 ➢ Kinderszenen, Op 15
22:45 ➢ Études Symphoniques, Op 13
47:04 ➢ Kreisleriana, Op 16
1:19:25 ➢ Waldszenen, Op 82 - Vogel als Prophet
1:22:34 ➢ Widmung (arr. Liszt)

recorded live in 2010

Liszt  Spanish Rhapsody

recorded live in 1987

Brahms  Piano Sonata 1 in C major, Op 1
i Allegro
10:59ii Andante
16:08iii Scherzo. Allegro molto e con fuoco
21:29iv Finale. Allegro con fuoco

recorded live in 1993

Tchaïkovsky  Natha-Valse

Prokofiev  Toccata in D minor, Op 11 (1912)

recorded live in 2004

Prokofiev  Sarcasms, Op 17

recorded live in 2004

Prokofiev  Piano Sonata 8 in B major, Op 84 (1944)
i Andante
15:46ii Andante sognando
20:39iii Vivace

recorded live in 1995

For those of you who enjoy murder mysteries, here is my first with a strong musical polemic as background

Murder in the House of the Muse

which is also available as an audiobook.

And this is the more recently published second mystery in the series:

Murder Follows the Muse

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Or return to the Great Women Pianists Play page

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