Press and Reviews
"Belsky offers a totally winning reading, as replete with technical ability and musical sympathy as the composer could wish for. .... as performer she gives the Sonatina an absorbing, moody reading that does it full justice. ... Belsky’s performances are delightful in their own right. ... I’m grateful to have my misguided image of Busoni corrected in such a thoughtful and thoroughly enjoyable way. Warmly recommended with a suggestion that you read Belsky’s notes, too. The whole package is persuasive, to say the least."
-Huntley Dent, FANFARE Magazine
"The Sonatina Seconda (1912) for instance, demonstrates that Belsky has Busoni’s novel prestidigital demands well in hand. A beguiling alternative with the table spread by the scholar-artist’s concise annotations."
-Adrian Corleonis, FANFARE Magazine
"I have enjoyed this performance by Svetlana Belsky, and whilst it might not replace Marc-André Hamelin’s more comprehensive set of the late piano music, it does make a fine single-disc alternative to his three-disc set. In his ‘Elegies’, including his version of ‘Greensleeves’, ... Belsky is particularly good."
-Stuart Sillitoe, Music Web International, 5/8/2019
"It is plain she is an excellent artist and Busoni enthusiasts should not hesitate to get this."
-American Record Guide
"This disc is an important document. With it, Belsky reveals a little-known side of this composer whose original works are refreshingly innovative for their time."
-The Whole Note, 4/26/2019
"The Sonatina Seconda (1912) begins the program. How modern, how dissonant, how amazing for its time, rousing, and how well played. This is worth the price of admission alone. I never paid enough attention to later Busoni, so this woke me up and made me very aware and very pleased. Ms. Belsky plays it all like she owns it, and indeed she does."
"Svetlana Belsky offers a fascinating tour of some of the notoriously difficult, complex, unclassifiable-as-to-style music of Busoni on a new Ravello CD. Belsky ... thoroughly plumbs the depths of this music. Belsky seems to have a remarkable intuitive understanding of these Busoni pieces, in addition to having spent considerable time studying their intricacies and performance challenges. Her readings are wholly convincing and do a first-rate job of conveying the many facets of this very difficult composer’s complex and highly personal piano music.
"Svetlana Belsky posa en relleu el saludable eclecticisme harmònic, amb nombrosos dibuixos arpegiats, i el delicat estil contrapuntístic de Busoni. ... El pedal impecable de Belsky fon les harmonies en una atmosfera elegant de paisatges sonors flotants. ... Les versions de la pianista Svetlana Belsky d’aquestes obres pianístiques són un bon exemple de suavitat, de regularitat rítmica i, molt especialment, d’una gran subtilitat expressiva. (Svetlana Belsky highlights the laudable harmonic eclecticism, the harmonic tone-painting, and the delicate contrapuntal style of Busoni. ... Belsky's impeccable pedaling melts the harmonies in an elegant atmosphere of floating sound landscapes. ... The pianist Svetlana Belsky's versions of these piano works are a good example of polish, rhythmic precision and, especially, of great expressive subtlety."
"SVETLANA BELSKY/Ferruccio Busoni-The Late Works: A Russian pianist that fell under the spell of the Italian composer while doing her studies now plays her passion from her perch as an instructor at University of Chicago. Obviously a gal who doesn't let grass grow under her feet, her playing shows she's not afraid to sweep away the curtain and play like it really matters. A stunning solo recital that should go a long way toward getting her mentioned more widely in the same breath as other contemporary piano masters, she makes a great case for music being more than just a bunch of notes. Great work on some great works."
"Marrying awe-inducing technical capabilities to an artistic intuition of mind-boggling depth, Belsky manages to enter the inner sanctum of Busoni's creative thought, no matter the style, with miraculous panache. The pianist effortlessly captures the soul of the piece, regardless of whether the composer furiously tears down form and tonality in Sonatina Seconda, whether he reminisces in Chopin's lyricism in his Nine Variations, or whether he allows himself a rather off-color compositional remark by citing "Greensleeves" in Turandots Frauengemach. Belsky makes all these eccentricities sound perfectly plausible, imperative even; and she may well be the first pianist to accomplish this feat."