BBC Music Magazine recording of the month for Incantation

The new album featuring Antonín Dvořák’s and Bohuslav Martinů's Piano Concertos, as performed by Ivo Kahánek and Bamberger Symphoniker conducted by Jakub Hrůša, received the Recording of the Month in the Christmas issue of BBC Music Magazine. 

„There is no higher praise possible than to say that the spirit of Rudolf Firkušný hovers over this new release. (…) Kahánek’s scru­pulous attention to the dynamic markings results in a clear-textured performance of rare delicacy (…) Everything adds up coherently thanks to Kahánek's command of its fascinating sonorities,” writes John Allison in the enthusiastic review.

„Earning the Recording of the Month accolade amidst global competition from such a prestigious publication as BBC Music Magazine is a great honour. Yet I am even more delighted by the fact that it is an immense compliment to Czech music as a whole, as some works have been unjustly underestimated. I would like to express my thanks to the reviewer for having understood our intents, to Supraphon for support and care, and, particularly, to Jakub Hrůša and the Bamberger Symphoniker for putting heart and soul into the recording,” says Ivo Kahánek about the award. 

The conductor Jakub Hrůša added: „Working with Ivo Kahánek has always involved the uttermost professionalism and human warmth – both, I think, resulting from his artistic humility. I am happy that our joint sincere and ardent endeavour, shared with the equally fervent Bamberger Symphoniker, to ‚serve‘ two geniuses of Czech music, Dvořák and Martinů, has earned such appreciation. First and foremost, we have paid tribute to the two brilliant composers. We were, of course, our own men in each and every bar, but our work primarily aimed to celebrate the extraordinary beauty of their works. In this respect, Ivo and I chime with each other – we strive to be servants of the letter and spirit of the pieces we perform, in all detail and overall expression. I look forward to getting together with Ivo again – and with Martinů and Dvořák too!“

Get the album here.


“Le jeu du pianiste Ivo Kahánek est envoûtant, il sait nous captiver avec son style pianistique qui atteint presque la grâce…”
★★★★ Classique HD, September 2019

“Un pianiste ou plutôt un musicien romantique par excellence: les phrasés qu’il développe, si soigneusement peaufinés sous ses doigts, saisissent par leur chaleur dans tous les registres, scintillant dans les aigus, caressant les oreilles par la mise en valeur de la douceur vocale de la ligne mélodique… Pour le Concerto pour piano n° 4 Incantation de Bohuslav Martinů, il impressionne par le raffinement et la précision de son toucher au travers d’une partition riche en couleurs et parsemée de touches contrastées… Un must pour les amateurs du piano.”
★★★★ ResMusica, October 2019

“From start to finish, Dvořák’s and Martinů’s piano concertos are given compelling performances by Ivo Kahánek which feel fresh and exhilarating. With glorious sound to match the quality of the performances, this is an album to relish.”
★★★★ MusicWeb International, November 2019

“Kahánek and Jakub Hrůša make a brilliant case for a loveable piece. Dvořák's second subject is incredibly catchy, and the slow movement’s opening is drop-dead gorgeous. Kahánek never seeks to dominate; this is very much a meeting of equals, and probably the concerto's best modern recording… Keeping track of Martinů’s fre­ewheeling first movement is an exhilarating challenge, one's ears continually tickled by startling orchestral details… And as with the Dvořák, it receives a remarkable performance, with Hrůša’s Bamberger Symphoniker on incandescent form. Marvellous.”
★★★★ The Art Desk, November 2019

Text: Supraphon