Classique News, Sabino Pena Arcia
The young violinist Virgil Boutellis-Taft was a student of the late Suzanne Gessner at the Paris Conservatory before continuing a musical journey from Budapest to London and Tel Aviv. His CD, “Incantation”, shows that this path has been beneficial as he already shows a remarkable mastery of his instrument (a magnificent Venetian Montagnana from 1742 lent to him by a private patron). What first impresses you in Virgil Boutellis-Taft’s playing is the plenitude of a warm and pure sound, elegant and sensual, which marvelously develops the expressive intensity of Kol Nidrei by Bruch or of Nigun by Bloch. This young man possesses, most certainly, a romantic sensibility but he also knows how to go beyond lyrical deployment, he knows how to deepen the musical line to open troubling, almost magnetic perspectives, as in Chausson’s Poem. The unifying theme, that of incantation, gives the spiritual key to this success, and is also enhanced by the magnificent accompaniment offered by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Jac van Steen. An album to live with.