This new release is particularly interesting. We wanted to showcase important Russian composers from diff erent eras: Rachmaninov, Stravinsky and Shchedrin. Rachmaninov’s first concerto is one of my favourites; it is full of youthfulness, even though this is the later revision, edited by the composer. This composition was written while he was still at the Conservatory, and is one of the most moving and melancholy concertos. Despite his youth, Rachmaninov is revealed here as a profound artist. All his themes are quite astonishing. His genius shines through in this moving work, with all of its youthful naivet.. I haven’t played this work as oft en as the rest of his concertos, but, all the same, Gergiev and I have played it a number of times in Europe and it has been very well received. I think Rachmaninov is one of Gergiev’s favourite composers, too. Because of the breadth, the scale, his music is brought out really vividly by orchestras under Gergiev’s direction. And that is particularly true of the Mariinsky Orchestra.