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Musical World

Robert DeGaetano

  • Pianist

Reviews

Robert DeGaetano reviews

Mr. DeGaetano's playing is robust, precise, chiming and propulsive. He constructs a sturdy, almost metronomic rhythmic framework for every movement, which would prove constraining if it were not for lyrical sensitivity.
The New York Times


DeGaetano has the fire of youth, and he has technical strength that is outstanding even in a time when technique is assumed. The unusual features of his performance are depth of tone quality and a maturity of musical conception.
The Atlanta Constitution

There was more to Robert DeGaetano's performances with the Dallas Symphony that met the ear, for his playing of the Rachmaninov Paganini Rhapsody heralded more than a shining, confident mastery of a demanding work; it marked the return of a full-fledged artist.
The Dallas Morning News


DeGaetano is a physical pianist. His body mirrors the rhythmic outlines of his performance. He leans into lines with every ounce on his strong frame and his concentration is an extroverted act of will rather than an exercise in reflection. His playing has enormous rhythmic integrity and intensity and comes across with immense conviction.
The Washington Post

[DeGaetano's performance of Chopin's Scherzo in Bb minor] was the high point of the evening. Mr. DeGaetano proved to be an original interpreter with a powerful, fluent technique, [whose] reconsidered accenting and balances...produced a lively, persuasive reading.
The New York Times

Viva! Virtuoso: DeGaetano Commands Carnegie as Pianist Comes Into His Own...Robert DeGaetano is a true virtuoso, bravely attempting musical feats many other pianists..can't quite achieve. He's exciting and interesting...and his range of dynamics (particularly in a revelatory performance of Debussy's La Cathédrale engloutie) can hit the solar plexus, as it did in a final Liszt group. DeGaetano the composer will probably always elicit controversy, but more for the accessibility of his music, which no doubt would scandalize the avant-garde. He writes lovely pieces full of strong melodic ideas and a big-boned counterpoint.
The Westsider

Formidable technical equipment, impregnable technique and solid musicianship...[his] keyboard achievements are out of the ordinary. Somewhere he has acquired remarkable pianistic control that makes his playing seductive in a variety of styles.

The New York Times

The Schumann in poetry, emotion, technical brilliance, clarity and sensitive touch was as good as I have ever heard in recital or on records. To have heard him play Liszt was a high-water mark in my listening experience—unforgettable. If the piano were a beautiful lady, she would sip brandy and unpin her hair for DeGaetano.
Metro Magazine (Philadelphia)

A pianist whose name should be remembered, for he has the sensitivity and the power of the late Arthur Rubinstein.
Charleston-News Courier

Should Bach be played on the modern piano? If the results are as exciting as those produced by Robert DeGaetano, the answer is an unqualified yes. Mr. DeGaetano’s playing is robust, precise, chiming and propulsive.
The New York Times

DeGaetano can shape a Romantic melody with exceptional skill, clearly a performer in the romantic mold...beautifully articulated, lovingly traced in the late Romantic heroic style.
The Washington Post

It was evident from the very outset of his Purcell Room [Barbicon Center] recital last night that the American pianist, Robert DeGaetano, possessed a big, powerful technique, matching an uninhibitedly forceful interpretative personality.
The Daily Telegraph (London)

Equipped with a big technique and the ability to elicit a perfectly heavenly tone from his instrument, DeGaetano must be regarded as a major talent among his generation of pianists.
Atlanta Journal

With a patina of breathtaking technique and musical intelligence, he surely belongs to the greats.
Amarillo News-Globe

Mozart’s Sonata K.310 in A minor and [the] Nocturne in E-flat by Chopin became things of beauty and enchantment [with] an ease that transformed every difficulty into effortless and breathless pyrotechnics. Robert ended his concert to a standing ovation. Schumann’s Carnival has travelled down a century to immortalize his friends...DeGaetano’s Challenger will forever express the dreams, despair, hope and triumph of our generation. The Challenger will bear the message in the universal language of music to all corners of the earth and remain a testament to this movement in time. ‘Hat’s off’ to the man who crystallized the ambitions of our age into this masterpiece, The Challenger. ‘Hat’s off’ to Robert DeGaetano, pianist and composer.
Sunday Navhind Times (Goa, India)

The kind of musician who reassures you that one can be a virtuoso and still have brains.
Chicago Tribune

It was in his own composition that you saw the makings of a composer of robust insight into a technique of expression that was at once moving and modern without being too cerebral and self-conscious. DeGaetano’s future as both a pianist and composer seems assured.
Indian Express (Delhi, India)

Mr. DeGaetano’s own Sonata No.1 proved a sort of musical diary—personal, deeply felt and often affecting. The composer’s musical language is straightforward and tonal, his writing for the piano virtuosic.
The New York Times

The concerto [by DeGaetano] is essentially tonal, with generous overtones of Rachmaninoff, Ravel and Prokofiev.
Detroit News

Clearly a full-fledged artist, impressive on both a technical and musical level.
Dallas Morning News

A smart musician, bringing a capacity audience to a standing ovation."
The New York Daily News

Stressing poetry, nuance and phrasing, he offered breathtaking dynamics, a marvelous sense of scale and gorgeous tone.
Albuquerque Journal

A pianist with a clean, even technique, playing with fluency and phrasing with sensitivity.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

A powerful, brilliant and unusually well-developed technique...beyond that, a penetrating musical intelligence.
St. Paul Pioneer-Press

[The Challenger]...The composer’s sincerity and creative thrust are beyond question...DeGaetano’s performance left us gaping.
Times of India (Bombay)