Who or what inspired you to take up the piano and pursue a career in music?
I believe I’m a pianist because of a profound instinct which was born in me from the first time I touched a piano. When I began to study it, from the beginning, I knew that there was nothing else I could do in my life.
I even remember how I chose between piano and violin, saying that I like the violin but piano is a part of me.
Who or what were the most important influences on your musical life and career?
Well, I have many who’s because many people and events influenced my musical life:
I had several teachers, some were exceptional, some not so much, but I found all useful somehow because I could understand how I want to play and how I don’t want to play which is actually equal important!
But probably the event that made the biggest change in my playing was encountering the Russian piano school at the Moscow Conservatory where I studied for 5 years under the direction of Elisso Virsaladze.
What have been the greatest challenges of your career so far?
It’s always a challenge for me to discovery and express a new piece, finding new elements and intuitions which correspond to the ideal form I feel inside myself.
This process takes much time and energy and is never ending.
Which performance/recordings are you most proud of?
Performances: Always the next!! This because every time I play somewhere I have the opportunity to learn more about myself and the music.
Recordings: Hopefully the next too!! I have been live-recorded several times by radios but I have never experienced a studio recording which should be an interesting process…
Which particular works do you think you perform best?
With time passing my taste and my ideas changes….Maybe I can say that I perform better the composers who I feel are closer to some moments of my life. A year ago I would say Brahms and Prokofiev, today Schubert and Chopin
How do you make your repertoire choices from season to season?
I try to organize my recital repertory always with logic to create not only a couple of pleasant hours, but a real musical recital, with a strong intellectual and emotional meaning.
Do you have a favourite concert venue to perform in and why?
Until recently I haven’t performed in many of the greatest halls acoustics. Amongst those where I have played, I’d say the Great hall of the Moscow Conservatory.
I felt a really special atmosphere there, created by the history of the place but also by my personal memories, being the hall of the conservatory where I studied.
But I should also say that of course the hall is important but even more is the kind of audience who comes to the concert. So, for example, I like to perform in Germany where the public is usually is very respectful and where there is a very good musical culture.
Who are your favourite musicians?
Many from the past …..Cortot, Fisher, Richter, Arrau, Kempff, Glen Gould.……
What is your most memorable concert experience?
My most intense memory is not connected with one of major halls where I performed but with the recital I gave at the home of Sviatoslav Richter in Moscow the day I finished my studies there.
I played on his own piano…his sound remained in the keyboard and as I played I could see a view of all Moscow from the window of the room.
What do you consider to be the most important ideas and concepts to impart to aspiring musicians?
There are 2 things which I consider basic for my musical evolution and that I can share:
The first is that music is not just sound. Music is much more than that! That’s way we have to search and learn from other arts. This connection between arts is always evident in the oriental culture where a musician can learn from a poet, who can learn from a warrior who can learn from a dancer who can learn from a bird…..
In the same way with Western classical music, to have culture is necessary to provide a deeper sense of the music we produce.
Secondly, don’t betray yourself: to take out all what we have inside indifferently than what is around. Diversity in music must be a target and not something to avoid…but of course this diversity should come from what we actually are and our convinced idea and not for the mere desire to be different than others.
Where would you like to be in 10 years’ time?
Like one of the fables of Aesop: there is a man walking in the village and a guard asks him where is he going… He answers that he does not know so the guard says: “How is possible you don’t know? Come with me in prison!” So then the man answers, “Do you see? I was going to the market but now you bring me to the prison. Now can’t you see that in fact I didn’t know where I was going?”
So I feel the same… where the destiny will take me!
Emanuel Rimoldi performs music by Mozart, Schumann, Liszt and Rachmaninov at London’s Wigmore Hall on Tuesday 24th January 2017. Further information and tickets here
Emanuel joins Manchester Camerata for an UpClose exploration of music and the mind. In a multi-sensory experience from darkness into light and hope, we explore the mental ill health behind some of the world’s most well-loved composers.
Thursday 2 February, 7.30pm, HOME, Manchester (Theatre 1)
UPCLOSE: THE NEXT GENERATION
In Collaboration with The Keyboard Trust
Schumann Quintet in E flat major, Op.44
Rachmaninov Trio Elegiaque No.1 in G minor
Emanuel Rimoldi Piano/Lead Artist
Further information and tickets
Top prizewinner of international piano competitions ‘Top of the World’ (2013) and Manhattan (2016), Emanuel Rimoldi initially studied piano and composition at the ‘G. Verdi’ Conservatory in Milan. He continued with postgraduate studies at the Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow with Elissò Virsaladze and attended masterclasses with Yoffe, Petrushansky and Ashkenazy. He has received outstanding reviews in such publications as the Süddeutsche Zeitung, Leipziger Volkszeitung, Hamburger Abendblatt, MusicWeb International and Daily Music, and has performed in many of the most prestigious halls and festivals in Europe.