Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky * Rafał Alexander Łuszczewski


review on "Chopin Ballades" (DUX 1627)

This is a very impressive recital from Polish pianist Rafael Luszczewski.  I couldn’t see details of the instrument in the notes; the sound throughout is very “present” and the force of the piano and resonance is beautifully captured. Chopin’s four Ballades are held to be inspired by the Polish poet Adam Mickiewicz. Luszczewski is very impressive in the various tempos and uses his instrument to maximum effect to convey the different colours. If I had been in the audience, I would have sat transfixed, as reviews of his concerts confirm. 

The disc ends with the Barcarolle. My idol in this work is Dinu Lipatti (Warners) but Luszczewski is excellent too; I love the flourishes. It is an entirely suitable work to end this disc. 

This is a very fine collection of Chopin and it has been a real pleasure to hear well loved pieces in new performances. Luszczewski has, apparently recorded more than ten Chopin CDs and I hope to have the opportunity to hear some of them. I am avoiding any comparisons as, I go along with Sviatoslav Richter who famously said, either a pianist can play or can’t; Luszczewski, emphatically can.

by David R Dunsmore, MusicWeb International, April 2020


Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky’s concert at Marama Hall, 10th May, 2018

The Polish Heritage of Otago and Southland and the Polish Embassy sponsored a concert by the distinguished pianist, Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky, at Marama Hall last night. Lustchevsky is presumably used to much larger venues, yet there was no stinting on his performance. He maintained a high level of energy throughout, with thunderous octaves in both hands contrasting with delicate runs and deeply-felt melodies.

His programme was never lightweight. The Chopin and Liszt pieces he played in the first half have huge requirements for the pianist. Among these, in the two transcriptions of Schumann songs by Liszt, we have one (Frühlingsnacht) that is more Liszt than Schumann, while the other (Widmung) allows Schumann’s glorious voice to sing through. Liszt’s Hungarian Rhapsody No 2, full of fire and passion, ended the first half.

Though the two Paderewski ‘miniatures’ in the second half were less strenuous, the two dances by de Falla, and the exhausting original piano version of Rhapsody in Blue by Gershwin are full scale works. Lustchevsky endeared himself to the audience throughout by introducing each piece in a warm and down-to-earth style, in clearly enunciated English.

Several pieces in the concert were a tribute to his fellow-countryman Paderewski who had played them in New Zealand on his 1904 tour. Two encores ended the concert: Chopin’s Fantasie-Impromptu, with its central tune made famous as I’m always chasing rainbows, and a lyrical Nocturne by Paderewski.

by Mike Crowl, Dunedin, New Zealand, May 18th, 2018


Tonight Christchurch was treated to a phenomenal recital by Raphael Lustchevsky, celebrating the centenary of Poland's regained independence. Raphael's virtuoso performance had the audience literally gasping in wonder, and up on its feet in a standing ovation. A joyous and proud evening for the Polish community, bringing the best of Poland to New Zealand.

"Polonia Christchurch", Christchurch, New Zealand, May 2018

"What a relief to finally listen to something Polish, which is not as heavy as a cathedral and grim as the entrance to the crypt."

The CD released by the reliable DUX label, which continues to look for an interesting repertoire, contains works probably unknown even to the experienced music lovers. The first one is a Piano Quartet in E flat major op.15 by Józef Elsner (1769-1854), a quite efficient composer with a good sense of catchy melodies and bright, transparent textures. His work in spirit is quite Mozartish - cheerful, though not devoid of tones of light melancholy.

A bit darker and definitely more diverse in moods seems to be Emanuel Kania's Piano Trio in G minor (1827-1887). It is understandable, considering that he already represents the romantic trend, where gusts, impulse and passion break classicist conventions and give way to emotions. Both works, although written by composers of a lively temperament, create a moderate fire, remaining in a noble, yet slightly social mood. And as their greatest advantage - both compositions are examples of good quality work that does not die out in pretentious refinement, but is the result of submission to the finest requirements of the art of composing.

The album was released on the occasion of the 800th anniversary of the city of Opole, the region where both composers come from. The contractors of the works are also connected with this region, among them Rafael A. Luszczewski, who is one of the most talented pianists of the young generation. The group performed perfectly, and above all tuned well to the works of Elsner and Kania, which deny that Polish music is only good when it is bleak like a November hangman (ref. to: November Uprising).

Audiolifestyle Magazine, Warsaw, Poland, August 2017


"The elegant and the savage" - review on the CD album "Polish Chamber Music: Elsner & Kania", DUX 1352 /2017/

I like when music invites me to research and find out how much is yet to discover. I have recently heard the Piano Trio of Emanuel Kania live. He was a versatile musician: composer, pianist, organist, pedagogue and, notably, the music critic. He came from Opole, like Joseph Elsner, who taught Chopin. Now both Elsner and Kania are together on one CD. The Piano Quartet by Elsner and the Piano Trio by Kania are performed by the musicians from the Opole Philharmonic and the pianist Rafael Łuszczewski.

The quartet is a light, elegant, five-o-clock music. But Trio ... It's rather a suite, where each of the four movements makes a whole
coherent poem. And this wildness of sound with such modest measures! I bet it was a hit in its prime-days. For those who know - it will recall the famous Zarębski quintet. Magic and emotion from the first to the last note! 

"Presto" Magazine, Warsaw, Poland, June 2017


Piano Recital by Raphael Lustchevsky

On Thursday, November 10, 2016, the piano recital supported by the Embassy of the Republic of Poland in Singapore took place at Victoria Concert Hall. The concert performed by renowned Polish pianist, Raphael Lustchevsky (Rafal Luszczewski) marked the 98th Anniversary of Independence of the Republic of Poland. The artist presented compositions of Karol Szymanowski, Franz Schubert and Fryderyk Chopin. The concert was received with a standing ovation followed by two encores.

source: Embassy of the Republic of Poland, Singapore, November 2016


Raphael Lustchevsky, un polaco enamorado de la música en Ecuador

Sus constantes visitas a esta ciudad, ya sea para dar conciertos o talleres, hicieron que naciera en el músico polaco Raphael Lustchevsky la idea de crear un espacio que ofreciera a jóvenes instrumentistas la oportunidad de mostrar su talento y que a su vez este sean reconocidos. “En Guayaquil hay muchos jóvenes talentosos que quieren surgir y es una manera de darles el empujón”, dice el laureado pianista, con 20 años de trayectoria musical, en referencia a lo que lo motivó a crear el Concurso Nacional de Piano Fryderyk Chopin. Es así como nace este certamen bienal. Hoy se da inicio a su segunda edición (...).

Lustchevsky manifiesta que el concurso ha sido un esfuerzo mancomunado de varias instituciones, como el Consulado de Polonia en esta ciudad. Según Lustchevsky, quien también preside el jurado de la competencia, su intención es mostrar el legado que el compositor y pianista Fryderyk Chopin dejó al mundo, y que mejor que a través de las manos y la creatividad de los jóvenes músicos que hay en el país.

"El Universo", Guayaquil, Ecuador, July 12, 2016


review on the CD album "Chopin Live" DUX 1240 /2015/

Exceptional fidelity to the era of Frederic Chopin and unusual clarity of interpretation make Luszczewski one of the finest performers of Chopin's repertoire in the world and one of the greatest pianists of his generation. His name is known to the patrons of the finest concert halls in the world and the audience of renowned international festivals. It is worth mentioning that Raphael A. Luszczewski beyond incredible technique and sense of Chopin's forms, is also an outstanding popularizer of Polish composer in the world, largely responsible, among others, for the organization of Chopin's music competitions taking place in South American countries.

The newest album of Raphael A. Luszczewski is the second album (after the "Dancing in the Blue", 2010) published by the label DUX, and contains live-recorded tracks in Australia, in 2012. Although we are dealing with a repertoire very popular and very often performed by Chopinists, since scherzos and polonaises constitute the two main trends that define our national style of piano works, the publication of these recordings may prove to be a great event on the Polish music market.

It's rather seldom that we are confronted with music so brilliantly flowing from the heart of the romantic expression contained in the works of Chopin. Luszczewski phenomenally operates moods and dynamics enchanted in an exquisitely performed "Polonaise in C sharp minor," or preceding it, played extremely freely but with almost sterile purity "Polonaise in A flat major". The interpretation of so exemplary Chopinesque "Polonaise in A-flat major" that we find on this album can exceptionally delight and provoke to plunge into contemplative listening. This applies, moreover, to a series of all five polonaises constituting the first part of the disc, played with a dance charm and mastery of the form.

Even more, almost acrobatic, virtuosity can be found in the four superbly played Scherzi. Here, however, the pianist never pulled away from enormous feeling and sensitivity, visible in every touch of the keys. Each individual scherzo performed by Luszczewski is characterized by deeply inspirational interpretation and emotions palpable in every sound. Luszczewski succeeded to combine in symbiosis the nobility, warmth and delicacy with remarkable dynamics and expression, these contrasts being reconciled by a feature which is lacking in many modern pianists: unfettered inspiration and spirit enchanted in the works of Frederic Chopin.

Robert Ratajczak, LongPlay - CDreviews, http://longplay.blox.pl/, Warsaw, November 2015


comment on the latest CD album, Chopin Live /2015/

Fryderyk Chopin transformed the scherzo into an autonomous, independent work, rather than a part of a symphony or sonata as it was previously part of during the Classical era. Expanding this genre gave it a new, more romantic and dramatic expression. The composer's polonaises give us a glance into his Polish patriotism. The polonaise is the most important national dance of Poland, and Chopin composed 18 over his lifetime. Polish pianist Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky performs these works brilliantly.

http://www.hbdirect.com/ Classics & Jazz, Vermont, U.S., February 2016


"Paraguay celebra 95 años de relaciones diplomáticas con Polonia"

Asunción, IP.- En el el Palacio Benigno López se conmemoró, este viernes, los 95 años de relaciones diplomáticas entre el Paraguay y Polonia. El viceministro de Relaciones Económicas e Integración, Rigoberto Gauto, destacó la labor de ambos países “que hacen grandes esfuerzos por impulsar la integración en sus respectivas regiones”. Además, el viceministro, resaltó los nombres polacos que “dieron mucho por el desarrollo mundial, como Nicolás Copérnico, quien nos indicó donde estábamos y quiénes éramos. Por último, para cerrar el acto de conmemoración, se contó con la presencia del artista Raphael Alexander Lustchevsky, pianista destacado, quien interpretó obras del compositor polaco Frederick Chopin.

Agencia de Información Paraguaya, Asunción, Paraguay, October 2, 2015

after the 48th National Piano Festival in Slupsk, Poland :

The evening of September 9th, appeared as a pianistic and artistic event of extraordinary measure - also in relation to the pianistry throughout the history of the Festival. The hero of this evening was the pianist Rafael Luszczewski - a disciple of the Katowice Academy in the class of Andrzej Jasiński, as well as Lazar Berman, Alexis Weissenberg - outstanding pianists and teachers. He is the artist who enjoys extremely rich piano activity on an international scale. Now, the audience of the Festival got to know the basic part of it: piano recital. 

In this case, under this modest, ordinary name, the 48th Piano Festival offered its listeners a musical event of extraordinary artistic format: the performance of an outstanding artist in a repertoire typical of piano recitals: Chopin's works (Waltz, Polonaise in A major), Liszt (Funerailles), the transcriptions of Schumann's songs, and for the diversity -  Cordoba and Sevilla by Albeniz - all these works played by him beautifully, endowed with the passionate spirit of romance and all the features attributed to them - enriched with inspiring music discourse and miraculous sound, wonderful touch ... We did not recognize the philharmonic grand piano.

But the true coup de foudre that evening was the piano version of Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue. Rafael Luszczewski played it brilliantly, delighting listeners with beautiful, rich sound, captivating dynamics, impressive expression - and exceptional elegance. This performance seemed to beat the original version of this work - with the orchestra. Great recital, great sensitivity, excellent art of the pianist - and in a deep sense the ennoblement of the 48th Piano Festival ...

Kazimierz Rozbicki, "Muzyka 21" Magazine, Warsaw, Poland, October 2014

"International concert pianist Raphael Lustchevsky performs in Gurgaon"

Gurgaon recently witnessed a soulful performance by international concert pianist Raphael A Lustchevsky from Poland, who charmed the people present with his magical fingers and left the audience asking for more.

"The Times of India", New Delhi - India, April 2014


"The Polish Institute & Delhi Music Society present a piano recital by Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky"

The Polish Institute in collaboration with the Delhi Music Society presented a piano recital at India International Centre performed by Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky from Poland in a programme of works by Schubert, Liszt and Chopin. Raphael, known for combining technical brilliance with rich musical talent, received great critical acclaim.

source: The Polish Institute, New Delhi, India, April 2014


"Chopin Recital"

Classic music admirers in the capital received with stormy applauses a recital of Chopin compositions perfectly performed by Rafael Luszczewski. Organized by the Embassy of Poland in Albania, in collaboration with the Albanian Chopin Society and the Albanian-Polish Friendship Association, the recital of outstanding Polish pianist on Thursday’s evening 25 October filled completely the main Concert Hall of National Opera and Ballet in Tirana. The repertoire included polonaises, waltzes, mazurkas, nocturnes, and other pieces of our genius composer. Among the guests were representatives of Albanian state institutions, opinion-forming and cultural circles, diplomatic corps, graduates of Polish universities, Polish community in Albania. 

source: Embassy of the Republic of Poland, Tirana, Albania, 25 of October 2012


"Polished Chopin Recital" by Peter Donnelly

Polish pianist Raphael Lustchevsky made a strong impression in Hobart last September with his complete performance of the Chopin 24 Preludes Op.28. Last Friday evening he again displayed his empathy with the music of his fellow country. The selection of pieces made for a nicely balanced and contrasted program.

Lustchevsky possesses a secure technique and favours a clear-headed and unromantic approach to Chopin's music. He excels in the more dramatic works and his playing of the three Op.34 Waltzes was fast and brilliant, while not lacking finesse. He was at his best in the three Op.59 Mazurkas where a natural feel for the folk idiom paid dividends. Lustchevsky's spectacular performance of the Op.53 Polonaise in A flat major 'Heroique' resulted in a welcome encore.

"The Mercury", Hobart - Tasmania (Australia), June 2012

"Pianist finds Aussie soft spot"

Australia has won another heart in Polish pianist, Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky. I caught up with this musical maestro after he had me spellbound with Chopin and asked him what he thought of our great land. "I love Australia. Tasmania was my favourite place for the unspoiled attitudes of the people, their friendliness and the beautiful countryside to boot", he said.

"The Herald Sun", Melbourne (VIC),  Australia, October 2011


"Raphael Lustchevsky – Polish Pianist Wonder. Perfection in a Polish pianist" by Sr Mary Noonan

I have waited over 80 years to experience anything like this. This Polish pianist was absolutely brilliant. His name is close to unpronounceable. But Oh, his music! All you have to do is to listen, and let it lift you to ecstatic realms. He is Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky. Listing countries where he has won fame is like compiling an atlas of the world. These countries, and more, are places where he performed to rapturous crowds, won prestigious awards, and even, in Peru, founded the Chopin Piano Competition in Lima, the first in South America, becoming its President. It was September 17, 2011. I don’t think I have the words to describe the breathtakingly beautiful performance. All composers he played were Polish, and it is the first time I heard a composition by a woman, a piano sonata by Grazyna Bacewicz.

For me, the climax was Chopin’s “Polonaise in A-flat Major“. It was so thrilling to hear this Polish pianist playing the work of his own countryman. The most amazing feat was to come. He played the whole 24 Chopin Preludes, without a break, catching perfectly the variety of moods. It took 40 minutes. I saw him at close range and noticed that he stopped only once – for less than a minute – to wipe the perspiration from his hands and brow. That was all!

No wonder he received a standing ovation. We clapped, and clapped until we had no energy left. Raphael was generous with his time at the end of the concert, signing CD’s and posing for photos. I hope there are some among you who realise how privileged we were to be able to celebrate with Poland, this country’s term of presidency in the European Union.

How things have changed! I remember, during my history studies years ago, how the surrounding nations were, three times over the centuries, partitioning Poland – until it was wiped out of existence. Now here it is, one of Europe’s most highly respected countries, inviting the other nations of the world to celebrate this moment of triumph. And doing so, with their proudest product – the perfection of their Polish pianist!

srmarynoonan.wordpress.com, Hobart - Tasmania, Australia, September 2011


"Concert tour in Australia' 2011" (Perth) by John Lee 

On Saturday 1st october, 2011, there was superb artistry to please the ears, and eyes, of Perth recital goers, and public guests of the polish Australian Cultural Society in Western Australia. The generous Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky made a welcome return, introducing pieces before playing the grand Stuart and Sons Concert Piano, in the magnificent timber-lined auditorium of John Inverarity Music and Drama Centre, at Hale School, Wembley Downs.

theatre australia | your portal for australian theatre
Perth, WA (Australia), October 2011


"A classic farewell to summer"
BATH CITY: Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky was helped by Chopin to finish the Summer Concerts in Drøbak in the best possible way.

On the program this time was Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky. The Polish pianist filled the church to the verge in July last year, but this time it was more airy in the ranks of the church. Nevertheless, they received a solid concert from Lustchevsky who has been among major international names from the age of 16. Once again, his countryman Frederic Chopin was on the menu, with 24 Preludes from Op. 28. Brilliantly played, and with an informative introduction, an hour in Lustchevsky's company was another great experience.

"Østlandets Blad", Ski, Norway, September 5, 2011.

"Pianist mit der Pranke eines Tastenlöwen"
Lustchevsky spielt Chopin in der Uniaula am Wilhelmplatz, by Karl Friedrich Ulrich
Mit gebotenem kraftvollen Zugriff, jedoch immer nuanciert dann auch die vier Scherzi. Nach dem kontrastreichen Scherzo h-Moll - nervös-umgetrieben der erste Teil, mit Sentiment gespielt die Kontrafaktur eines polnischen Weihnachtsliedes, im zweiten - bewies Lustchevsky in weit ausgreifenden Läufen, dass er bei aller Noblesse auch über die Pranken eines Tastenlöwen verfügt.
Nach dieser gewaltigen Klangrede musste das durchschaubare Scherzo E-Dur fast belanglos wirken. Lustchevsky verweigerte sich der möglichen Publikumserwartung, half dem harmlosen Stück nicht dramatisierend nach. Unter seinen Fingern durfte es sein, was es ist: ein eigenartiges Idyll. Nach zehn Chopin-Stücken spielte Lustchevsky als zweite Zugabe für sein begeistertes Publikum eine reizende polnische Film-musik.

"Göttinger Tageblatt", Göttingen, Germany. March 30, 2010.


 "Recital of the Polish pianist Rafael Luszczewski in Canberra"

On 27th of May, under the Chopin's 2010 celebrations, a recital was held at the Embassy by one of the most talented Polish pianists, Rafael Luszczewski, who is inscribed on the prestigious list of "Steinway Artists". During the concert, organised by the Embassy, the pianist performed Chopin's: scherzos, mazurkas, polonaises and nocturnes. The concert was attended by mostly Australians who do not have a Polish background. There also were representatives of the scientific and music circles, cultural organisations, media, Federal Ministries and the Polish community. The recital was recorded by the media partner, ArtSound radio station and its broadcast antenna, for the Chopin's 2010 celebrations in Canberra. Rafael Luszczewski's performance was exclusive and he is rated as a high level artist. The pianist received a standing ovation. In the opinion of the audience and the music experts, it was one of the best piano concerts in the Capital of Australia this year.

source: Embassy of the Republic of Poland, Canberra ACT, Australia. June 2010

"Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky plays Chopin in Kota Kinabalu" on tour to SE Asia 2010

What could be better than having Poland’s acclaimed classical pianist Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky — considered one of the best of today’s young generation — performing a recital of Chopin? Nothing could be better. I can tell you this, because I was at such a perfect event, with a front row seat about 10 feet away from this wonderful musician. We were really lucky. Lustchevsky is not only every bit the child-prodigy-grown-up-to-be-a-world-master that we read about, he is also very NICE. He swept out from behind a side curtain wearing formal concert pianist coattails, and bowed grandly. I could see Lustchevsky’s hands moving lightly, with precision and a kind of mischievous charm.

“The Polonaise is the most significant Polish tune, besides the Mazurka,” he said. “It’s one of the five national dances, and Chopin is known for incorporating our national folk music into classical music.” With that, he played the Polonaise in C sharp minor, Op. 26, with all the sweet melancholy that is Chopin. Painfully tender; tearfully beautiful. He then played the Polonaise in A major, Opus. 40, aka “Military.” As named, he struck the keys with a military authority, adding some flair and a smile, because Raphael Lustchevsky is a fun-loving and humourous guy, and he so clearly enjoys his music!

With a flourish, he launched into Scherzo in C sharp minor, Op. 39, and I really thought I’d had some of that Polish vodka because Lustchevsky’s hands were a blur as he played furious double octave runs and his left hand repeatedly leapt across the keyboard in an unleashed surge of intensity. As they say: the crowd went wild.

The tempo instruction of the Scherzo in B minor is “Presto con fuoco” (quickly with fire). Lustchevsky played the passages furiously, and I imagined scared people in the Warsaw streets running blindly at the terrible fear of war. Of course, when the melody of the Christmas carol came through so clearly, it was like Lustchevsky was deliberately playing it to us so we could not fail to detect it.
It was an exhilarating and emotionally exhausting evening. Professor Lustchevsky is a magnificent musician, and a generous teacher. Everyone lucky enough to be in that recital room would know they had witnessed something very special.

"SabahSongs", Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia, May 2010


"Traveling along a piano recital of Raphael Lustchevsky"

On Tuesday (11 November 2008), I was invited by the Embassy of Poland to attend a piano recital given by Raphael Lustchevsky. The recital is held in commemoration of the 90th independence day of the Republic of Poland and has a lecture recital format, so the pianist will talk about the background of a song before he plays. I myself was impressed by the innate pianist who appeared warm and friendly, also in its ability to present the works of composers according to their country of origin.

Without further ado, Raphael straight fell into battle with Chopin Polonaise op 40 (Military). Like soldiers marching, Raphael's nimble fingers were able to warm up the atmosphere of the hall. The second song is Chopin Scherzo op 31. This time the pianist seems to start to show its teeth. Introductory mysterious pianissimo was exceptional, highly controlled! There was a contrast between pianissimo and fortissimo, making dramatic effects are packed in Chopinesque "joke". I am personally very impressed with Chopin's Scherzi (which means "joke") , especially op. 31 and op. 39. 

If you see the historical side, the two contrasting sides of Scherzo are contrary to the calm and gentle personal character of Chopin. In fact, there are many works of Chopin that combine two contrasting elements; the first part agitato, but then slow and melodic part. After we ran helter-skelter, there is always an oasis to draw breath before returning to running. Looks like Chopin's humor to convey is a dark joke, where there is always a little touch of the mystery, then interspersed with lightweight agile and carefree. I compare the diabolical feeling of Scherzo op. 31 with a dual personality of Schumann (Eusebius and Florestan) or Liszt (with Faust and Mephistopheles). Scherzos proper for its period are lively, fun, while even full of dramatic elements, mysterious and diabolical: therein lies the genius of Chopin. Whatever it was, Raphael Lustchevsky has presented Scherzo op. 31 tones with accurate precision, everything was measurable and well-played, including the virtuosic passages that require a high level of technical mastery. 

In an atmosphere of the game still fixated on Chopin, Raphael invites all viewers to visit Spain. It is no exaggeration when I say that these solicitations are managed successfully. In fact, I want to be much longer in Spain for the mere mention of Albeniz canciones sung so beautifully and spiritually. Introduction of the Sevilla indeed describes the atmosphere of carnival and fiesta-style fanfares in the mediteranean cities. But when part two (canciones) appears, I just saw how deeply the appreciation of Raphael to the spirituality of each tone has sounded with every melody, as if I am listening to ghost soprano Victoria de Los Angeles being present in the middle of the audience. 

Suddenly there is Piazzolla Tangos! Raphael instantly changes the atmosphere to Piazzolla jazzstyle-Tangos and melancholic nuances becomes definite. No need to explain again: Just great! I do not know the arrangements of Piazzolla Tangos Raphael played, because in general Piazzolla rarely wrote musical notation for piano solo. If that night Raphael plays Tangos with its own arrangements, means the arrangements are a success. 

The last song is Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue. That is precisely the greatness of Raphael, he could play that work so long with bravura and the endless enthusiasm, so as if on stage there was a set of full orchestra played by ten fingers. High technical mastery makes Raphael did not have trouble playing this work, as it were effortless. Of course, flowing blues tunes here and there, ending the music made me travel on American soil. 

Aditya P. Setyadi, http://pianistaholic.blogspot.com/, Jakarta, Indonesia, November 15, 2008


(Teatro Solis, Montevideo)

El primer concierto de la Temporada Principal 2006 de la Orquesta Filarmonica de Montevideo tuvo como principal protagonista al pianista polaco Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky interpretando el Concierto No.1 Op.11 de Chopin. El solista visitante hizo una versión melancolica e intimista de la obra, en la mas pura tradición polaca. Es un concierto que no exige una orquesta de rico entramado sonoro si no por el contrario de una insinuante atmosfera romantica que deje al piano explayarse con tranquilidad en el hermoso fraseo melodico de Chopin. En este sentido el solista tuvo un alto desempeńo desgranando un acertado instinto pianistico y una claridad de ejecución. El publico premio con largos aplausos al solista quien dejó de regalo un nocturno y una polonesa.

"Klasicaa Magazine", Montevideo, Uruguay, May 2006.

link from: The Warsaw Voice, Warsaw 2005

"A Feast of Freshness" by Mary Hitch 
Raphael-Alexandre Lustchevsky at Carlisle Cathedral

FROM the moment that this young man walked quietly to the piano, sat down, remained silent for several seconds, then finally turned and addressed the audience, he had us eating out of the palm of his hand.
He opened his programme with two works by Spanish composers: Sevilla by Albeniz and Spanish Dance by De Falla, both played with great freshness and subtlety of rhythm. Next came two contrasting works by Liszt – the Petrach Sonnet No 104 played with a quiet intensity, and Rhapsodie Espagnole, charmingly described by Lustchevsky as “very tricky”. It is, in fact, monumentally difficult and was played with great brilliance.

The second half began with two pieces by Paderewski (the pianist who became Prime Minister of Poland) and ended with Chopin’s Ballade in G minor and Scherzo in B flat minor. Both were beautifully played, if at times a little fast for the Cathedral’s acoustic. He gave us three splendid encores included Chopin’s Fantasie Impromptu and Revolutionary Study.
Altogether a feast of piano playing.

"Cumberland News", England, U.K., June 22, 2005


"Just came back from a recital..."
I watched the TV on Monday morning and saw the program on advertising a contest for tixs to piano concert... naturally couldn't resist tryin'.. and I got it today in the afternoon... =)

A recital by the polish pianist Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky who came to Singapore, at the famous Victoria Concert Hall. He played on the Steinway & Sons grand. It was amazing how Fantasie Impromptu and Grand Polonaise Brillante in E-flat major, Op. 22 (closing theme on "The Pianist") sounded like when played by a master like him.. just breathtaking and downright inspiring to the soul.. Naturally did the late Polish pianist (his countryman) Chopin proud.
Then when concert ended, his CDs (Chopin and Beethoven) were up for sale... guess what? Chopin CDs snapped up like bees to honey... then he autographed all the CDs... now I'm a proud owner of his CD.
Heh... though me now only Grade 2... very inspired to emulate him. In years to come, I shall play like him one day =) Wish me luck."

pianostreet.com, Singapore, September 2005

(...) das Orchester war aus Irkutsk angereist, der Dirigent is ebenfalls Russe. Einzig der Klaviersolist Raphael A.Lustchevsky ist gebürtiger Pole, doch verbindet ihn sein slawisches Blut trotzdem unmittelbar sowohl mit der Tonsprache als auch dem vollblütigen Temperament (...). Schon mit der einzigartigen Akkordenkette des Anfangs erwies sich Raphael Lustchevsky als ein Interpret von Generosität, der dann auch in den zahlreichen Virtuositätspartien einen edlen Ausdrucksgehalt stetig mitgestaltete.

"Schaffhauser Nachrichten", Schaffhausen, Switzerland, 25 April, 2005

Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky, the internationally acclaimed Polish pianist (...) achieved world rank by winning the prestigious Dinu Lipatti Competition in Bucharest (...). Lustchevsky, who has been lauded for his intelligence, passion and thrilling technique, makes one feel, says James Galway, that he is 'playing for you especially'."

"The Cape of Great Events", Cape Town & the Western Cape, Cape Town, South Africa, September 20, 2004

(...)el pianista polaco Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky, quien es considerado en la actualidad como uno de los intérpretes más talentosos de su país y con enorme proyección dentro de Europa. Entre sus múltiples cualidades sobresale el dominio de una depurada técnica pianística, además de su evidente serenidad y pureza en la ejecución.

"Cinearte", Santiago, Chile, April 2004

"Poder de convocatoria"
Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional - Temporada Oficial 2004 Teatro Nacional Costa Rica

El pianista Raphael Lustchevsky debutó en forma brillante con la OSN. El poder de convocatoria del flamante director titular de la Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional (OSN), Chosei Komatsu (...) quizá fue aumentado aun por el atractivo de un joven solista en el piano, el virtuoso polaco Raphael Lustchevsky.

Sobre el Concierto No.2 para piano y orquesta del francés Camille Saint-Saens, las malas lenguas musicales sostienen, acaso mas en broma que en serio, que empieza con Bach y termina con Offenbach. (...) 

Lustchevsky demostró agilidad técnica y, pese a la deplorable condición del instrumento, produjo sonoridad colorida; con el apoyo habil de Komatsu y la orquesta, la interpretación del pianista se oyó apropiadamente grave y solemne en el andante sostenuto inicial; ligera y juguetona en el mendelssohniano allegro scherzando; festiva y efervescente en el presto final, una movida tarantela. Fuera de programa, el pianista complació con la Fantasia Impromptu opus 66, de Chopin.


"La Nación", San Jose, Costa Rica, March 23, 2004

"Pianista polaco Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky en el Aula Magna de la Universidad Federico Santa Maria"

Las caracteristicas que mas definen la personalidad artistica de Lustchevsky son una acrisolada claridad discursiva, servida de enfoques mas asociados a una visión intimista del arte musical (...). Lo anterior pudo apreciarse a lo largo de todo el programa, considerando - en justicia - el buen criterio de haber escogido obras acorde a la especial sensibilidad del pianista, manifestada en una clara exposición, una blandura de toque, un sopesado control de volumen, eficaz gradación de planos sonoros y un certero dominio de recursos musicales como el rubato, los crescendos-diminuendos, el fraseo y el color.

"Granvalparaiso", Valparaiso, Chile, 19.04.2004


"Sur les pas de Paderewski - Recital de haute tenue du pianiste Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky"
Raphael A.Lustchevsky a commence son recital jeudi soir par une suite en trois mouvements de Paderewski. (...) Davantage encore, le style de Lustchevsky, technique fabuleuse, beau coup de pedale, s'approche de celui des pianistes de cette epoque. (...)  Les executions de Granados et Albeniz ont confirme les grandes qualites techniques du pianiste, qui avale toutes les difficultes avec une facilite grissante. (...)

Lustchevsky evite la fadeur sucree d'un style de salon. Il construit l'Andante Spianato et Grande Polonaise brillante dans la solidite, la volubilite et la puissance. (...) Tout, absolument tout, dans cette approche instinctive et dominatrice des textes releve d'une nature pianistique qui murira encore. Et lorsque Lustchevsky reussit, dans quelques mouvements lents, a refrener ses ardeurs, le resultat musical est d'une belle intensite.

"L'Impartial", La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland, December 2003

"A Concert to Commemorate Indo-Polish Diplomatic Relations" by Nandita Saikia
I went to a concert on September 11 that was held to commemorate 50 years of Indo-Polish diplomatic relations, and 70 years of the establishment of the Polish Consulate in Bombay.
I don't often go to concerts like this one but I'm glad that I did. The concert, which was to help promote Indo-Polish ties, was by a pianist called Rafal-Alexandre Luszczewski who made his debut in the international area at the age of 16 with the Tokyo Symphony. [more >>]

"The India Times”, New Delhi, India, September 2003

"Famous Polish pianist thrills fans at Ipoh resort"

Raphael A.Lustchevsky, a Polish pianist who shot to fame at the age of 16, delighted a packed audience with a classical repertoire at the Meru Valley Resort in Ipoh recently.

"The Straits Times", Ipoh-Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, August 2003

"Two concerts by Raphael A.Lustchevsky"

The gifted and brilliant young Polish pianist was heard in Edinburgh at the end of June (2003). We could ask - "why was this musician not heard yet at a full-scale public concert in Edinburgh?" (...)
What a variety this young artist offered to us! (...) Chopin's music must be close to his heart; brilliant and sometimes thunderous performances came from his hands; the heroic Polonaise in A-flat and the magic wizardry in the Scherzo No.2 were heard in all their glory.(...) The challenging harmonies and keyboard mastery show a total command of modern piano composition in Bacewicz's Piano Sonata No.2 ; and so it was our gain to have heard such a fine performance of this work (...). To add to our delights Raphael gave us music by Ignacy J.Paderewski. (...)

Altogether a wonderful experience, for us to hear this fine young pianist, who, in his modesty, wears his skill and his musicality so lightly, with his charming and assured contact with his audience of those memorable soirees in June.

"Scottish-Polish Cultural Association Newsletter", Edinburgh, Scotland, July 2003

"An evening with Raphael A.Lustchevsky at the Assembly Hall of the AUB"

The full of temperament works by F.Chopin miraculously created by fingers of the artist brought up the memories. The artist paid the honors to the composers whose works he performed tonight, through the honest interpretation without attempt to compete with them. That could be seen during his performance while he played the I.Paderewski (...) with enormous passion and persuasion. His fingers have flown over the keyboard with precision and velocity, performing with such a maestry that only Paderewski had at his command.

The interpretation affected us to the bottom of our hearts, lifting the listeners to the point of emotional escension, that we have never experienced before. It felt like Chopin inspired the pianist through the power of his talent, giving us the opportunity to hear this excellent performance – full of opponent feelings – which the fascinated crowd followed without a whisper. This reflection came to me when I was sitting in the Assembly Hall, listening to the famous Polonaise played by Raphael with such a sense of patrioticism which had never been reached by anyone.

"An-Nahar” – Beirut, Lebanon, October 4, 2003

"The harmony of musical poetry" 

Nice surprise and charm – these are the words to describe remarkable capacities of the Polish pianist Raphael A. Lustchevsky who represents the Polish piano school blending well both the classical and contemporary style. His talent and highly individual interpretations revealed the spirit of the music of the past and current times, showing great sense of diversity and esthetics in performing the works of different character and style. This particular charm which the artist cajoled the public with, during his concert organized jointly by the Syrian Ministy of Culture and the Polish Embassy at Al-Assad Hall in Damascus, was greeted with an enthusiastic response from the public.

„Al-Baas”, Damascus, Syria, September 29, 2003

Lustchevsky's U.S. debut - "An elegant offering" by Charles Ward

Already active in Europe, Latin America and Japan, Lustchevsky used his all-Polish program to reveal a persona that cajoled listeners rather than grabbing them by the gut.

Lustchevsky was an engaging performer who poured out lovely strands of melody and beautifully shaped thickets of sound all afternoon. When opportunity arose to explode with technical bravura, he did - mightily - but he never pummeled or distorted music. His interpretations suggested a musician who approaches music with intelligent understanding, rather than diving into it with raw instinct. Thus, the performances were carefully developed and fastidiously delivered.

 "Houston Chronicle", Houston TX, USA; December 2002


 "Eine Nocturne für Leticia"

Schon die drei Sätze von Paderewski (...) machten deutlich, wo die ganz besondere Gabe und Neigung des Pianisten liegt: in der Epoche der Romantik. Die wellenförmig verlaufende Dynamik der ersten beiden Sätze wurde im dritten Satz durch eine lausbübisch-gnomisch wirkende, volkstümlich anmutende Gestaltung abgelöst. In der Interpretation suchte man vergeblich nach einem Gesamtbogen; sie bestach vielmehr durch die Sprache der aus dem Moment heraus entstandenen Phrasierung und wirkte gerade deshalb so echt und packend. Nach der Pause, (...) die Balance zwischen Leidenschaft und Leiden, zwischen Traum und Realität machten die bekannten Werke von Chopin zugänglicher als gewohnt. Zum Höhepunkt des Konzertes geriet aber die unspektakuläre Nocturne (...). Mit einer unglaublichen Liebe zu jedem Ton schien Lustchevsky für eine einzelne, spezielle Person zu spielen. (...) Diese Matinee wird uns noch lange im Herzen nachklingen...

"Schaffhauser Nachrichten", Schaffhausen, Switzerland; November 2002


"Mit Idealismus und grossem Können" by Michael Mössner

Am Samstag, 2.Dezember, war der grosse Saal des Kultur- und Kongresszentrums in Luzern mit jungem Publikum zwischen zwölf und zweinzig Jahren gefüllt. Dirigent Achim Fiedler, der auch schon das Berliner Sinfonieorchester dirigierte, und der junge polnische Klaviervirtuose Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky, der mit 17 Jahren bereits mit dem Tokyo Symphony Orchestra debütierte, standen im Zentrum des Geschehens. Ein bravouröses Heimspiel bot der junge Konzertpianist mit seinem Vortrag des Klavierkonzertes in E-moll, Opus 11 von Frederic Chopin. Dem grossen Applaus folgte als Zugabe das solo Suggestion diabolique von Sergej Prokofiev, ein sehr modernes Stück. Das Konzert war wirklich ein grosser Genuss. Auch damit könnten junge Menschen in die wunderbare Welt der klassischen Musik herangeführt werden.

"Urner Wochenblatt", December 2000, Switzerland


"Geschliffene Juwellen"

MUSIK/LECKERBISSEN FÜR LIEBHABER: Der polnische Pianist Rafael A.Luszczewski spielte im Rahmen der Bernischen Chopin-Gesellschaft die 24 Préludes des Namenspatrons.

(...) In seinem Rezital im Assisensaal des Amthauses (...) nahm sich der junge polnische Pianist mit technischer Brillanz und Gespür für klangliche Subtilitäten der Interpretation dieses reichen Bilderreigens an. Mit kraftvollen Akzenten und weichen, fein ausgehörten Kantilenen verlieh er diesen zwei Dutzend, alle tonarten des Quintenzirkels berücksichtigenden Miniaturen Plastizität und Strahlkraft. Jede agogische Bewegung, jede Betonung schien an ihrem Platze zu sein und verfehlte ihre Wirkung in diesem Spannungsgefüge nicht.

"Berner Zeitung", Berne, Switzerland; December 2000


Uno de los jóvenes pianistas más destacados de los últimos ańos es Raphael Alexandre Lustchevsky. Entre sus múltiples cualidades sobresale el dominio de una depurada técnica pianística, además de su evidente serenidad y pureza en la ejecución. Por su actividad artística ha recibido numerosos reconocimientos internacionales (...).

"Arte y Cultura", COFIAC, Mexico, October 17, 2000


"Luszczewski le Lumineux",
SPECTACLES/MUSIQUE: Raphael Alexandre Luszczewski: un nom a retenir

(...)En final, retour aux sources avec Chopin et la tres grande Sonate en si mineur, abordée avec humilité, pas d'effets de pédale intempestifs ni rubato, et un grand sens de la lisibilité et du détail. Une vision tres personelle, épurée et fluide, signature d'un grand artiste. Ovation du public gratifié de deux bis (...). Raphael-Alexandre le lumineux nous a vraiment éblouis.

 "La Republique du Centre", France; January 1996


In my opinion Luszczewski is very promising pianist for the nearest future. Chopin´s Fantaisie was a proof of his artistic maturity, facility in acquirement of extensive works and - as well as the rest of his program - extraordinary gift for music. The Polonaise in A flat op.53 was a true virtuoso piece, performed with a clean purity, energy and freedom. Generally Luszczewski is characterized by exceptional immunity from stress and seems to be very well prepared for public appearances, which is not a really frequent feature of our young pianists. Anyway, he plays spontaneously and is able to execute his artistic ideas of interpretation and performance even in unpropitious conditions.

by Andrzej Sułek ,"Ruch Muzyczny", Warszawa, Poland; November 1994

"Lustchevsky´s debut at Tokyo Metropolitan Art Space"
Luszczewski´s performance, along with a floating serenity that is difficult to imagine of someone his age, was punctiliously organized and had a clean purity. In a little cool Beethoven, the performance plan was well-thought out and flowed unfalteringly. In the Brahms, nuances stood out in relief, the depth of which being the focus of attention. In the Chopin as well, Luszczewski´s self-confidence was felt to have gained yet another measure of strength, making for a performance abounding with vitality.

"Ongaku no Tomo"/ Chopin Piano Music Magazine, Tokyo, Japan; January 1994


In 1990, being only 16 years old, he recorded his CD for Pony Canyon Inc.. The CD was splendid and Chopin and Liszt´s works were performed with fantastic fluency and extraordinary sense of music.

"Gazeta Wyborcza", Warszawa-Katowice, Poland; February 1992


Charming joy of play and ability to create a mood - Pole playing so faithfully Spanish dances from the Suite Memories of the journey or famous Navarra by I.Albeniz; a special gift of musical narration in Chopin´s works - these are the main features of this young artist.

by Andrzej Chylewski, "Glos Wielkopolski", Poznan, Poland; May 1992 


Rafael Luszczewski (...) performed Schumann´s Symphonic Etudes with the passion of a virtuoso. He contrasted them perfectly, always caring of wonderful sound. I could feel spontaneousness, power of his dynamic will in the artistic performance together with the submission to discipline required by the form and substance of the work.

by Boleslaw Banas ,"Trybuna Opolska", Opole, Poland; November 1992


"(...) Rafael Luszczewski bewies in zwei Scarlatti-Sonaten brillante Fingertechnik und angemessene Luzidität, die im Schlussteil hochst unbequeme F-dur Ballade Op.38 von Chopin geriet zum virtuosen Paradestück. Selbst eine Edelschnulze wie Liszts Petrarca-Sonett II (Nr.123) gewann Profil, und La leggerezza aus Liszts Etudes de Concert kamen Luszczewskis spürbarer Freude an geradezu exaltierter Virtuosität ebenso entgegen (...). So kann man ins Schwarmen geraten."

"Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung", Deutschland; April 1989