Soloist for the Tchaikovsky's Piano Concerto No.1 was pianist Elena Fischer-Dieskau who brought exciting drama and an infectious sparky attitude to the well-known piece. The opening horns followed by full orchestra together with the mighty piano chords set the bold tone, Fischer-Dieskau’s blistering attack matched every bit by the players. As the movement developed, Larsen-Maguire carefully managed the balance and tempo changes, the lush sounding muted strings contrasting spectacularly with their fierce detached chords, two flutes adding colour. Fischer Dieskau’s initial approach was bold and authoritative, her touch turning light and dreamily sensitive in the development passages in the long first movement. The slower Andantino allowed the players more room to breathe with a lovely flute solo and elegant pastoral woodwinds before Fischer-Dieskau’s increasingly fast runs and dynamic flourishes had everyone scampering playfully in the Scherzo, with calm returning as the two flutes emerged into a quiet ending. 

The final movement with its Ukrainian dance theme was thrilling, a showcase for the orchestra and soloist. The players were bristling with energy but Larsen-Maguire kept them on a tight leash, glancing over her shoulder and matching time with the soloist as final passions ran high, Fischer-Dieskau making the fearsome chord sequences and double octave runs look easy, hurtling towards an exciting finish.

Bachtrack, David Smythe 

 

While she is based in Berlin, the Berlin-born soloist for Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No.1 now lives in Scotland, and bears an illustrious name. Elena Fischer-Dieskau is the grand-daughter of German baritone Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, one of the most famous singers of the 20th century. She studied in Hannover and Baltimore and has played concerts on both sides of the Atlantic, but this was, I think, her orchestral debut in Scotland, following a recital in Perth Concert Hall last year. Some of her phrasing of this well-known work was idiosyncratic, but her articulate fingering packs a powerful punch, and her close attention to the blend of her playing with the orchestra was always apparent.

The Herald, Keith Bruce

Elena Fischer-Dieskau combines precision, distinction, elegance, magical dexterity and infinite tenderness with a caressing touch on the piano and attentive communication with the orchestra, in the Schumann piano concerto.

Jounal DNA, France

Fischer-Dieskau's delicate hands produce a thunderous sound. [...] The young pianist enchanted the audience with her emotion-filled performance and inspired every last member of the audience.

Lena Reiner, Schwäbische Zeitung

The young pianist Elena Fischer-Dieskau delighted the audience
with her sensitive playing.
 She is an outstanding pianist full of passion, concentration and youthful energy that draws the audience to her.

Hans-Bernd Hennig, Böhme-Zeitung

The large dynamic spectrum across Brahms’ 16 Walzes op. 39 was scrupulously illuminated by Elena Fischer-Dieskau, as well as the characteristical complexity which binds them. The dainty young woman then shook the piano with Prokofiev's sonata op. 83. Elena Fischer-Dieskau began to play the seventh piano sonata with wild determination, alternating lyrical parts in lost "dreamworlds" with barbarian virtuosity. 

 

Andreas Guballa, DLZ

 

[...] Elena Fischer-Dieskau built this incredibly virtuosic piece (Franz Liszt's Dante Sonata) with a ruthless force but also a delicate differentiation in the lyrical parts.

Roland Dymke, WAZ

Entering the scene, the delicate and slender pianist Elena Fischer-Dieskau presented a great resemblance to a Jane Austin's novel young heroine. However, she turned herself into a warrior of sound and fury, as soon as she sat down on the piano. [...]

Fischer-Dieskau's expressive interpretation of Rachmaninov's second piano concerto, combined with her great technical mastery of the piano, was greeted by the audience with a standing ovation.

Movimento, Brazil