Subtlety distinguished his set of Chopin mazurkas, a velvety touch evoking folk music instruments such as bagpipes, hurdygurdies, or shepherd’s pipes. Geniušas savored the dissonances and blue notes of these pieces, best in the melancholy Op.30 No. 4. An eclectic range of musical interests also came out in two fascinating encores, Grieg’s “Drommesyn” and Leonid Desyatnikov’s jazzy “Foxtrot” (in the pianist’s own transcription).
- The Washington Post
(Charles T. Downey)
All of these qualities combined to optimal effect in Schumann’s “Faschingsschwank aus Wien.” Often pianists have either the technical fortitude for the outer movements or the discernment to make the three inner movements sing. Geniušas excelled at both, capturing the work’s frenetic energy, razor wit and despondent gloom.
- The Washington Post
(Charles T. Downey)
Geniušas brings out, wisely, everything we would expect from the Russian school. The tone is more terse and decisive, the touch deeper. A great performer of Chopin, he is equally a passionate interpreter of Rachmaninov. Opus 32 No. 13 is particularly impressive, as is the rarely-played, short but very eloquent Sonata No. 2 by Prokofiev.
- Le Devoir
Even if the prestige of the competitions is very helpful to the pianist at the beginning of his career, Geniušas is anything but a competition winner on display: he is a true artist who communicates. I must insist on the sobriety and the good taste of Lukas Geniušas: even if he always seeks out the expressive characterisation of a work, he never overworks a line simply to obtain an expressive effect.
- Le Devoir
I must say that I have rarely heard these pieces played in this way, as real music - great music, rather than formal studies in how to play the instrument effectively.
- Le Devoir
Though he commands all the power of the Russian school, Geniušas was fully alert to the lyrical impulse of this music, tracing a dreamy line in the slow movement that showed why he made his name in Chopin. Spellbinding in the cadenza, he voiced each chord and every arpeggio with care.
- The Telegraph
A musician thoughtful beyond his age, the Lithuanian-Russian pianist stamped his individual mark on the performance, no easy achievement in this warhorse concerto. [Grieg Piano Concerto No.1]
- The Telegraph
Geniušas plays with a prizewinner’s brilliance, yet with a mature ability to recreate a work’s architecture, and an expressiveness that doesn’t overtly draw attention to itself.
- The Guardian
The special quality that singles out this CD is the energetic fervour of this 24-year-old Russian's playing. Where some of his peers prefer a gentle whisper, Geniušas risks drama. He is not hampered by convention. This may irritate some, but it shows courage.
- Marco Frei
The programme he chose includes two works which have little in common apart from their extraordinary musical demands. And this pianist offers us one of the most engaged and accurate performances heard in a long time. In the Brahms, we are immediately captured by the vigour of the playing and the total clarity of the structure - the Scherzo and the Finale are exemplary. Lukas Geniušas also possesses a sense of dramatic progression, without taking it to extremes. The temperament is feverish, but controlled, the dynamics and the accents are of an infallible precision.... [Beethoven] Impressive in its vitality, the quality of the playing in the Finale is breathtaking. Lukas Geniušas has an immense talent.
- Pianiste No. 92
Having watched Lukas Geniušas pass through each stage with ease, whether in competitions or in concerts, it is clear that the path he has followed in recent years is simply the prelude to a great career as a pianist.
- La Liberté
The 2nd prize-winner in the 2010 Chopin competition does not for a moment allow the fugues to become cold and lifeless. He animates them with conviction (4th), brings out the fantasy of their embellishments, finds the appropriate level of calm, while maintaining clarity and vivacity. He has a capacity to drive forward, never relaxing a moment of tension, constantly maintaining interest. The interludes are vibrant with energy, metamorphose into a pastoral scene (No.2), whose peace is hardly disturbed by the sound of a distant aeroplane, and are tinged with a gentle humour (Scherzando in No.3). The 24-year-old Russo-Lithuanian pianist dazzles the audience with the energy of his playing, his vast array of nuances (No. 4), his ability to produce a superbly rich sound from his instrument (No. 7) and his delicate and refined playing.
- Bertrand Boissard
To tackle two masterworks of the piano repertoire as one's recording début takes a lot of courage. Lukas Geniušas impresses not only with his energy and fingerwork; he interprets these massive pieces with poetic insight. He displays through noble purism and stylistic empathy a consistently deep understanding of Brahms and Beethoven.
- Spiegel Magazin
At the piano, the young Russian prodigy Lukas Geniušas, winner of several of prestigious awards, gave a fascinating recital.
- La Nouvelle République
(Naëlle Le Moal)
On Sunday morning at 11o’clock Lukas Geniušas performed Hindemith’s entire Ludus Tonalis, in a breathtaking performance that left the audience stunned. The work, consisting of 25 pieces, which is rarely performed in concerts, is far from accessible with its serialist structure (2 series of 12 notes); between the Praeludium and the Postludium we hear 12 3-part fugues alternating with 11 interludes. Lukas Geniušas, born in 1990, interprets with genius these extraordinarily scholarly compositions (they are moreover Hindemith’s final compositions for piano) and maintains a tremendous tension for over an hour, which he slightly relaxes at times, in order to once again build up the intensity. After such concentration, he even follows this with, as an encore, the Finale of Prokofiev’s Sonata No. 7 (admittedly at a slightly restrained tempo); we can imagine the potential and particularly the strength within this young musician.
The three piano sonatas by Frédéric Chopin rippled beneath the virtuosic fingers of the Russo-Lithuanian Lukas Geniušas. The greatest international piano competitions have already awarded him top prizes. Now he needs to make his name with the public. This he accomplished at Fribourg, where his exceptional talent overwhelmed the audience on Tuesday evening. The Russo-Lithuanian pianist conquered the Equilibre Hall with his interpretation of Frédéric Chopin’s three Sonatas. The performance began in the freshness of youth with the Sonata in C minor Opus 4, which dates from 1828, the year after the death of Beethoven, whose spirit seems to hover over certain passages (menuetto and finale). Admittedly, it doesn’t have the strong character of later works, but this is the idea of this recital: to show the path followed by the composer between the time of his studies and his mature years. Lukas Geniušas imparts perfectly the candour of this first sonata. The sonority of the piano is not particularly gentle, but this allows him to imbue the performance with energy and character. Finishing with a very skilful cadenza, the pianist seems to be saying that this hors d’oeuvre has whetted his appetite for the plats de résistance. He immediately launches, into the famous Sonata in B flat minor. Beginning with fervour, then becoming more lyrical, the first movement leads into a dream-like scherzo. Lukas Geniušas strikes a delicate balance (a very slow tempo, but without dragging) in the funeral march, loaded with references and emotion. With a nervous jolt, the final movement of the sonata begins to ripple beneath his virtuosic fingers, until he brings it to an abrupt halt with a final authoritative chord. In the third part comes the Sonata in B minor. His fingers sweep over the keys as the music tenses and relaxes. One could drown in the flood of notes, but is saved by the constant attention to clarity. The serenity of the largo is echoed in a ‘Nocturne’ offered as an encore, then the evening ends with an elegant foxtrot and a breathtaking Flight of the Bumblebee. A wonderful end to the season for the Fribourg International Piano Series.
- La Liberté Fribourg
One thing is certain: Lukas Geniušas has what it takes to become a top pianist. His powerful and energetic playing immediately creates a tense atmosphere, its deep sonority combined with an infinitely poetic touch, exploiting to the full the different facets of these pieces, which, in contrast to the Chopin Preludes, have no structure.
...the young Russo-Lithuanian pianist, Lukas Geniušas, displayed astounding technical richness and stylistic flair in his performance of Rachmaninov's Rhapsody on a Theme by Paganini.
- Offenbach Post
Geniušas' remarkable finger work resulted in a wide-ranging expressiveness that gave shape to the thematic material.
- Maintal Tagesanzeiger
Pianist Lukas Geniušas effortlessly gave a masterly performance with brilliant fingerwork.... His polished, crystalline tone, most evident in the fast passages, was a wonderful medium of expression.
- Frankfurter Presse
I first heard Lukas Geniusas in Warsaw at the Chopin 2010 competition in which I was part of the jury. I was immediately captivated by his playing. Afterwards I had the opportunity to hear him on other occasions and my enthusiasm for him increased every time. He is a fantastic pianist and his musical approach is completely natural without any affectation or mannerism which puts him aside among most pianists of his generation who fights for individuality . With him music speaks for itself! I have been equally impressed by his Mozart d minor concerto or Tchaikovsky second . Brahms First sonata was the best I ever heard. The Chopin Etudes are sheer magic. In my opinion he has everything to be recognized as one of the greatest pianists of his time. I wish him a great career.
While his peers are doing their best to charm everyone around, including the global music industry, Mr Geniušas has embarked on an altogether more serious mission: a painstaking search for a performance style that is fully modern and catches the spirit of the age.
- Kommersant Russia
He looks like a child with the boyish face, shy eyes and curly hair. But do not be deceived - the 20 year old Lithanian-Russian pianist Lukas Geniusas is already an experienced virtuoso at the piano. Last autumn he won both the 2. Prize and a special prize in the distinguished Chopin Competition. We had proof that Geniusas knows how to interpret Chopin's neckbreaking piano music in Saturday's concert in Diamanten. 24 Etudes - both Opus 10 and 12 were on the programme, and Lukas Geniusas created a brilliant masterpiece out of every etude. In the short span of time - max. 5 minutes for each etude - he created new colours and new atmospheres. From incredible wildness to dreamlike beauty. Everything with a perfect technique. To see him carefully shape his fingers in the slow movements and let them loose in teriffic speed in the faster movements was an impressive sight. His touch was either gentle as an angel's or powerful with an adult pianist's authority. The melodies could be heard clearly and with radiant resonance in the full hall. Second part of the concert was Liszt's immense Piano Sonata in B minor. Geniusas created a drama of the in many ways mysterious sonata. The opening motif sounded dark and dismal. Geniusas attacked the following explosive tones like a lithe cat. He created resonant transitions between the changing atmosperes in the piece. The release came in the last major chords which stood chiseled clearly in the air. Geniusas played three encores.