Ohlsson exhibited his consummate technical prowess as he tackled Rachmaninoff’s fiery “Piano Concerto No. 1 in F-sharp minor,” a startling contrast to the calmer Borodin.

Rachmaninoff with the Boulder Philharmonic07 Feb 2019

“Opening with a brass fanfare, Ohlsson entered right away with an impressive and ostentatious piano solo, followed by grandiose chords echoed by the orchestra. The work’s slower melancholy passages were punctuated by wickedly fast piano scales, as Ohlsson’s fingers glided to and from each end of the piano. The piano was executed so quickly that the notes blended together into a massive wave of sound.

Increasing in intensity, the final movement, “Allegro Scherzando,” seemed even faster than the other two movements; sonorous cymbals crashing amid the booming brass and clamorous strings while Ohlsson’s piano melody floated over the top, standing out by sheer virtue of its indefatigable speed.”

Colorado University Independent