Gryaznov, an Innovator and Visionary


By Giselle Brodsky
Artistic Director & Founder of MIPF
November 20th, 2022

Vyacheslav Gryasnov’s stunning South Florida debut in 2022 revealed that he is no ordinary artist. His refreshingly brilliant transcriptions and interpretations put him in a category by himself.

He was selected to participate in our Festival because he is an artist that thinks outside of the box. He understands the importance of interpretations that move forward to motivate and inspire the next generations of pianists and audiences.

He is a superb artist, a consummate musician, and a visionary. For this season’s performance, he decided to present himself as a pianist not as an arranger and offered our audience rarely heard repertoire. He began his recital with four pieces from Jean-Philippe Rameau’s Suite in A minor.

Rameau was regarded as one of the most important French composers and music theorists of the 18th century. By the end of this century, his music had gone out of fashion and not until the 20th that serious efforts were made to revive it. Gryasnov’s rendering of these pieces will remain as a benchmark for the utmost sensibility and purity.

The program continued with the rarely heard, little known Mozart Variations on “Lison dormait”, K264/315D from the opera Julie by Nicolas-Alexandre Dezède, written by Mozart when he was 22 years old – and reappearing in Paris after a long hiatus. Its delicious manner was planned to appeal to French taste.

Vyacheslav’s interpretation was evocative of that era and its style – finessed to a breathtaking level, illustrative of deep understanding of the craft of piano playing. Our audience marveled,happy to have discovered another jewel in the piano repertoire.

These two pristine selections by Rameau and Mozart prepared the listener for what was yet to come: Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 4, a true masterpiece.

The Concerto’s performance originally was announced for 2 pianos – the unusual way when not with its orchestra. Two days before the performance, Vyacheslav called me to say that he no longer needed the second piano to perform the concerto and asked if I would trust him to play with his own virtual orchestra. Intrigued, I said YES!

The experience of hearing his performance of the concerto with his own synthesized version of a dream orchestra was exhilarating, exciting, and illuminating. The audience was taken on a quasi-interplanetary ride and loved it.

This ground-breaking concept is visionary and will allow artists and presenters to share important concerto repertoire without incurring the astronomic costs of a live orchestra. Whilea virtual orchestra will never replace a live one, we were thrilled to let the Miami International Piano Festival, as in the past, serve as a canvas for the innovative artistry.

Gryasnov’s innovatory premiere here – yes, our event was the first of its kind - brought a new beam of light for all pianists interested in exploring the possibility of performing concertos. Once his futuristic vision is shown to the wider world, it doubtless will excite a much younger audience and provide fresh possibilities to emerging pianists.

This magical experience has already inspired us. We will be presenting Rachmaninoff’s wondrous five works for piano and orchestra with five different pianists next season.

I feel grateful, hopeful, and optimistic about the future of classical music because of visionary artists such as Vyacheslav Gryasnov.

— Giselle Brodsky, Artistic Director & Founder of the MIPF