An exceptional pianist, Serhiy Salov dazzles both with the virtuosity of his playing and the sensitivity of his interpretation. He is a great soul of an artist entirely turned towards music.
Coming in 2022-23, a prolific season, Serhiy Salov will give chamber music recitals at the Conservatoire de Montréal and at the Chapelle historique du Bon Pasteur, Beethoven's second piano concerto with La Sinfonia de Lanaudière, the first concerto of Tchaikovsky with the Orchestre Symphonique de Laval as well as concertos by Mozart and Chopin, in the main series of the Société Pro Musica.
2022 has been an exceptionally prolific year for Serhiy. In addition to a recording of Mozart's complete piano sonatas, we also saw the pianist at work in the feature film Coda - Life with Music, starring Sir Patrick Stewart, Katie Holmes and Giancarlo Esposito, a film released in June in Canada and of which Serhiy interpreted all the music.
Another seminal feature of Salov’s artistic profile is the ever-increasing role of improvisational elements in the works performed. The pianist often writes his own cadenzas and improvises variants in Mozarts concertos and sonatas. Salov’s imminent creative project is entitled TRAGEDIA ‘Z’, a Requiem for Mariupol – a musical commemoration of the massacre of 20 thousand civilians perpetrated by russia in the spring 2022 that is splicing J. S. Bach’s Well Tempered Clavier and St. Matthew Passion with free improvisation.
As a result of his winning the 2004 Montreal International Music Competition the young Ukranian then settled over to Canada.
From the early years of his career, Salov has been seeking enlarge his repertoire through concert transcriptions of large-scale symphonic works for solo piano. Indeed, it was his own arrangement for solo piano of Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring that led Gramophone magazine to state that “Serhiy Salov makes Stravinsky’s masterpiece his own”. The magazine praised his “glittering technique, meticulous balancing of chords and precise articulation of rapid-fire figurations” as well as his “splendid ear for nuance” and the “unruffled tonal sheen” in a “remarkable tour de force”.Salov’s solo Rite of Spring is just one example of his piano transcriptions. His other enterprises in this area include revisiting of Stravinsky’s Petrushka, Les nocturnes, by Claude Debussy, as well as scenes from the Wagner operas Walküre, Siegfried and Götterdämmerung. Furthermore, Mussorgsky’s NIght on a bare mountain and Prelude to the opera Khovanshchina, as well as Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker and most recently a solo piano version of both Suites for two pianos by Rachmaninov have been premiered.
In May 2014, Serhiy Salov won the Montreal Music Competition Improvisation Prize.
With recital programmes that extend from Johann Sebastian Bach through the Classical, Romantic and early Modernist composers to György Ligeti, the pianist recently also dedicates himself to contemporary pieces. His concerto repertoire ranges from the great works of the 19th and 20th centuries to lesser-known 20th century composers. Apart from his native Ukraine, Serhiy Salov has made solo appearances in Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK, and has performed as a soloist with the Berlin Symphony, the Hallé Orchestra, the Montréal Symphony Orchestra, the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, the Orchestre National de Radio France, the Philharmonia Orchestra, the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Salt Lake City Symphony, Tokyo Symphony, Krakow and Lodz Philharmonic orchestras. The maestros with whom he collaborated include Lawrence Foster, Jacques Lacombe, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Leonard Slatkin and Kent Nagano – the conductor with whom he toured major concert sites in Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay in spring 2013. In 2013 he interpreted Beethoven’s Triple Concerto with I Musici de Montréal and Maksim Vengerov.
In Salov’s own words, he was privileged to have been able to catch the last glimpse of the glory of the exceptional pianistic tradition of the old school, just before the all-encompassing crisis struck in early 90’s, resulting in the best pedagogues and artists leaving the country. Salov thus found himself confronted with the necessity of pursuing further education and artistic ideas abroad. In 1994, aged 15, he left for Germany joining the Junior Department and then the regular curriculum of the Hochschule für Musik Freiburg. He then completed a four-year course at London’s Guildhall School of Music and Drama, receiving the Concert Recital Diploma (Premier Prix) as well as the Master’s Degree.
Serhiy Salov hails from Ukraine. It is in his native city of Donetsk that he gave his public debut at age eleven performing the Grieg piano concerto with the National Symphony Orchestra his home country followed by his first solo recital at the Donetsk’s Philharmonia Hall.
In addition to his Montréal Grand Prize, his competition achievements include First Prize at the Épinal International Piano Competition (2001). Second Prizes at the Gina Bachauer Competition (2010) and the Cincinnati World Piano Competition (2012) and Third Prizes at the Long-Thibaud (2001), the Hamamatsu (2003) and the Tromsö Top of the World (2009) competitions.