Sivan Silver and her partner Gil Garburg set new standards in the high art, often too little appreciated, of the duo on one or two pianos: acclaimed by audiences and critics alike, they are the constantly returning guests of top orchestras, festivals and concert organizers.
Press reviews acclaim the Israeli artists for their consummate technical mastery, highly versatile and nuanced playing and exceptional sensitivity. Silver and Garburg capture the playful character of the piano writing, the interplay of impulse and intensity. Nor is this superficial showmanship or mechanical interaction; rather it is an organic and natural blending of the voices and a profound understanding of the work that determines the performance of the two exponents.
With their new recording of two highly virtuosic works by Igor Stravinsky, "Le sacre du printemps" and "Petrushka", the two artists have met a formidable challenge. Stravinsky, who arranged this ballet music both for orchestra and for four hands, makes great demands of his pianists.
In particular, their interpretation must always stand comparison with the orchestral version. Nor is that all. Stravinsky's works make the utmost demands of the instrument and of the artist: rich in contrast and colour, rhythmically vivid and complex, his music demands power and highly nuanced playing concentrated into a small area. This is a task that the pianist pair tackle with remarkable mastery.
They unlock from the piano the timbres of an orchestra and the rhythms of a percussion kit and do it in a way that creates the impression only one person is playing. Silver-Garburg were well on the way to promising solo careers when they paired up first privately and then at the piano.
They relish the constant contrast between recitals as a duo and orchestral concerts, between intimate pieces that call upon them as a unity, works conceived as dialogue, and those in which they sit at two pianos and summon up the massed power of a full orchestra.
"It's easy for a piano duo to create effects with sheer virtuosity. But we find that far too little. We want the listeners to be touched by our music to the depths of their heart."