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  • Carnegie Hall Presents
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CARNEGIE HALL PRESENTS

Sir András Schiff, Piano

Tuesday, April 3, 2018 8 PM Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage
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Sir András Schiff by Peter Fischli
The fantasy, sonata, and suite are forms that inspired tremendous creativity in composers from Bach to Brahms. Mendelssohn’s Fantasia in F-sharp Minor unfolds in three movements, each imbued with simple, graceful themes. There’s nothing particularly English about Bach’s Suite No. 6, but it captivates with its balance of pulsing energy and tenderness. Brahms’s miniatures, particularly his fantasies, are quintessentially Romantic character pieces that evoke powerful moods with economy and great beauty.

Part of: Great Artists II

Sir András Schiff is also performing April 5.

Performers

Sir András Schiff, Piano

Program

MENDELSSOHN Fantasia in F-sharp Minor, Op. 28
BEETHOVEN Piano Sonata No. 24 in F-sharp Major, Op. 78
BRAHMS Klavierstücke, Op. 76
BRAHMS Seven Fantasies, Op. 116
BACH English Suite No. 6 in D Minor

Encores:
BACH Italian Concerto, BWV 971
BRAHMS Albumblatt in A Minor, Op. Posth.

Event Duration

The printed program will last approximately two hours, including one 20-minute intermission.

At a Glance

FELIX MENDELSSOHN  Fantasia in F-sharp Minor, Op. 28

Together with the “Scottish” Symphony and Hebrides Overture, this evocative and technically challenging three-movement Fantasia—originally titled Sonate écossaise (Scottish Sonata)—reflects the impressions Mendelssohn gleaned on a visit to the Scottish Highlands.

 

LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN  Piano Sonata No. 24 in F-sharp Major, Op. 78

Beethoven had a special affection for this two-movement sonata, written in the wake of the “Emperor” Concerto. Commissioned by Muzio Clementi for his publishing firm in London, the F-sharp–Major Sonata is notable for its tonality—unique in Beethoven’s oeuvre—as well as its concision and dynamic energy.

 

JOHANNES BRAHMS  Klavierstücke, Op. 76; Seven Fantasies, Op. 116

Brahms lavished as much craftsmanship on his short piano pieces as on his sonatas and concertos. The capriccios and intermezzos gathered in his Op. 76 and Op. 116 attest his lifelong interest in the Romantic genre of the character piece, a vehicle for distilling a particular mood or musical idea to its essence.

 

JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH  English Suite No. 6 in D Minor, BWV 811

Bach devoted much of his time to composing didactic works for the keyboard. Among them were the six misleadingly named English Suites, which demonstrate the composer’s facility in the florid French idiom. Based on courtly dances of the day, the suites exemplify the elegant and melodious galant style that appealed to well-bred amateurs and cultured aristocrats alike.

Bios

Sir András Schiff

Sir András Schiff was born in Budapest, Hungary, and started piano lessons at the age of five with Elisabeth Vadász. He continued his studies at the Franz Liszt Academy of Music with Pál Kadosa, György Kurtág, and Ferenc Rados, and later in London with George Malcolm.

Recitals and special cycles—including the major keyboard works of J. S. Bach, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Chopin, Schumann, and Bartók—form an important part of Sir András’s performing activities. This season, he appears as conductor and soloist with the New York Philharmonic and Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and performs more than a dozen recitals during two North American visits.

An exclusive ECM recording artist, Sir András’s discography of works by Schubert, Schumann, Janáček, Beethoven, and Bach have been released to the highest critical acclaim. The most recent recording, Encores after Beethoven—a collection of encores performed after Sir András’s Beethoven cycle programs—was released in 2016. A recording with violinist Yūko Shiokawa that includes sonatas for violin and piano by Bach, Busoni, and Beethoven was released in October 2017.

Sir András has been awarded numerous international prizes. In 2006 he became an honorary member of Bonn’s Beethoven House in recognition of his interpretations of the composer’s works, and in 2008 he was awarded the Wigmore Hall Medal in appreciation of 30 years of music-making at London’s famed venue. Sir András is also a member of the Honor of Vienna’s Konzarthaus and a recipient of the Royal Philharmonic Society’s Gold Medal.

In the spring of 2011, Sir András attracted attention because of his opposition to the alarming political developments in Hungary. In view of the ensuing attacks on him from Hungarian nationalists, he decided not to perform again in his home country. In June 2014, he was awarded a knighthood by Queen Elizabeth II. Sir András’s book, Musik kommt aus der Stille: Gespräche mit Martin Meyer—essays and conversations with Martin Meyer—was published in March 2017 by Bärenreiter and Henschel.

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