In January 2019, Russian pianist Elisey Mysin strode onto the stage of the concert hall in Naberezhnye Chelny, an industrial city of more than a half million people on the Kama River, about 600 miles due east of Moscow. He smiled confidently at the audience. The hall was packed. He was dressed in a concert-style black tuxedo, which contrasted nicely with a mane of flowing blond hair. He sat on the piano bench, and then took a few moments to adjust it for height and distance to the keyboard, rested his hands on the keyboard and nodded to the conductor.
The orchestra began to play and soon Mysin was coaxing magic out of the grand piano, playing the challenging “Piano Concerto No. 3 in D Major” by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, who composed the three-movement concerto when he was only 11 years old. Mysin played without music, typical of professional, classical pianists, and played, according to one critic, in a way that showcased “his incredible sense of style and...
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