Homage to Sviatoslav Richter
When Sviatoslav Richter died 20 years ago at the age of over 80, he had witnessed the demise of the Tsars, fortunately escaped Stalin's purges as an ethnic German and experienced the fall of the Iron Curtain. So it's no wonder that world history and the musical history that he created are closely related. If not before, it was after his legendary Carnegie Hall recitals, for which he was granted an exit visa in 1960 to travel to the USA, that he was recognised around the world as one of the greatest pianists of his time, and many composers including Sergei Prokofiev dedicated works to him. Many of Richter's recordings are considered classic interpretations even today. Recalling the two concerts Richter performed at the Kölner Philharmonie in the last decade of his life, Igor Levit and Elisabeth Leonskaja devote concerts to their great role model, including one on Boxing Day.