Category Archives: Reviews

Violin Concerto

Weimar group truly dazzles at foellinger

The Brahms Violin Concerto, which followed, with Ukrainian violinist Valery Sokolov as soloist, unfolded with majestic and warm-toned splendor. Sokolov’s sweet tone blended well with the orchestra’s woodwind section, and oboist Brigitte Horlitz made a strong impression with her songful opening to the second movement.
The performance went into high gear in the gypsy finale, with lively interplay between Sokolov, and the orchestra, strongly conducted by Maestro Karabits. Sokolov had shown ultimate mastery of his instrument in the first movement cadenza of the Concerto, and in his encore at the Concerto’s end, he dazzled us with violinistic tricks, so outlandish that they drew chuckles from the audience. This encore turned out to be the cadenza from Nicolò Paganini’s First Violin Concerto.

John Frayne. March 16, 2018

Violin Concerto in D major

Music Worcester presents an elegant program by Sokolov and the Staatskapelle Weimar

Sensitive musicianship and technical excellence characterized the partnership of violinist Valerij Sokolov and the Staatskapelle Weimar under the directorship of Kirill Karabits who appeared at Mechanics Hall on Thursday evening as part of Music Worcester’s 158th season. Sokolov played the Brahms’ Violin Concerto in D major with sublime artistry; beautifully shaped phrases, sensitive interpretation, complete command of the score and a stunning cadenza earned him a well-deserved standing ovation….

By Joyce Tamer, Telegram & Gazette Reviewer, 02 March 2018

Bartok Violin Concerto n.2

RTE Orchestra Dublin, Stanislav Kochanovsky

Sokolov’s rich, warm tone on the G string over the mesmeric harp plucking instantly impressed in Bartók’s Violin Concerto no. 2. Possessing an intense vibrato which he employed liberally, Sokolov attacked his fast passages with bravura. His was an intense, serious reading of the first movement which suited the slow, haunting melody of the second subject but perhaps lacked a little bit of chutzpah in the zanier, jazzier sections of this movement. The NSO responded with much verve, its ominous passages full of menace.
In the Andante tranquillo Sokolov produced a shimmering tonal palette coaxing the folk theme along, particularly on its final iteration. Rudely interrupting this dreamlike state, the finale launched with some spectacular spiccato and gypsy lightness of touch while the orchestra provide some sharp bursts of colours.

14 January 2018

Prokofiev 2

MDR Leipzig

Vollmundig intoniert Valeriy Sokolov die volkstümliche Weise zu Beginn, doch unter der lyrischen Oberfläche brodelt es: Immer wieder wird die Geborgenheit der Hauptthemen aufgebrochen von schattenhaft umhergeisternden Gestalten. Von denen lässt Sokolov sich allerdings nicht irritieren: Auch die solistisch ausgedehnten Passagen spielt er mit unaufdringlicher Virtuosität aus, manövriert die wendigen, teils aberwitzig langen Tonverkettungen über dem sich chromatisch hochschraubenden Getümmel unbehelligt über das Griffbrett und formt mal einen robusten, geradlinigen Ton, mal einen schwelgerisch wiegenden. In Fritz Kreislers kompaktem Recitativo und Scherzo op. 6 als Zugabe begeistert der 31-Jährige zusätzlich mit einem temperamentvollen Wechselspiel violinistischer Raffinesse.

Alexander Faschon, Leipziger Volkszeitung, 13 November 2017


Singapore Symphony Orchestra/Jean-Claude Casadeus, Esplanade Singapore

The master of the subtle nuance, Sokolov drew the audience into a world of profound intimacy and deep discretion, and when the orchestra soothingly re-emerged from its lengthy slumber, it was to produce playing of the most divine delicacy…

The Straits Times, 06 March 2016


Hong Kong Sinfonietta/Ken Lam, Hong Kong City Hall

The sweet tone in Sokolov’s violin lines was evident in the early entry after the harp. The excellent playing defied the damp air and his pricey Stradivarius, dated 1703, delivered alluring resonance….

Oliver Chou, South China Morning Post


Evgeny Izotov (Piano) Teatro Ristori, Verona

The exceptional duo, Valeriy Sokolov, violin and Evgeny Izotov, piano, gave a magistral recital at the Teatro Ristori for the Amici della Music Society’s current season in Verona on 21st January. Their profound eloquence, poise, equilibrium, sensitivity and…

Jill Comerford, GB Opera Magazine


BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra/Nicholas Carter, City Hall, Glasgow

…the gorgeous performance of Barber’s Violin Concerto, gloriously played with a seductive glow and some fierce intensity by Ukranian Valeriy Sokolov. The concerto is among the most overtly beautiful of Barber’s works, but yesterday’s performance…

Michael Tumelty, The Herald Scotland, 28 October 2016


Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra / Kees Bakels, Poole Lighthouse

The Ukrainian violinist seduced in the stark shifts of emphasis and rhythm of the Nocturne, was light and playful yet forthright in the Scherzo, and fittingly energetic in the bow-shredding cadenza – into which he injected a sprinkling of original flourishes without pause…

Daily Echo, January 14th 2016