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Pierre-Laurent Aimard, Piano
Tamara Stefanovich, Piano

Thursday, October 25, 2018 7:30 PM Zankel Hall
Pierre-Laurent Aimard by Marco Borggreve, Tamara Stefanovich by Marco Borggreve
Messiaen’s Visions de l’Amen, written shortly after his release from a prisoner of war camp during the Second World War, fuses religious fervor and earthly passion. Daring in its explorations of color, harmony, and rhythm, this ardent work was written for the composer and his student (and future wife) Yvonne Loriod. Pierre-Laurent Aimard and Tamara Stefanovich, renowned for their spectacular virtuosity and piercing intelligence, perform Messiaen’s masterpiece alongside music by Ravel, Bartok, and a Harrison Birtwistle work co-commissioned by Carnegie Hall.
Pierre-Laurent Aimard is also performing February 15.


Pierre-Laurent Aimard, Piano
Tamara Stefanovich, Piano


BARTÓK Seven Pieces from Mikrokosmos

RAVEL Sites auriculaires

HARRISON BIRTWISTLE Keyboard Engine, Construction for Two Pianos (US Premiere, co-commissioned by Carnegie Hall)

MESSIAEN Visions de l'Amen

Event Duration

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

Pre-Concert Talk

Pre-concert talk at 6:30 PM: Pierre-Laurent Aimard and Tamara Stefanovich in conversation with Jeremy Geffen, Senior Director and Artistic Adviser, Carnegie Hall.

Support for the 125 Commissions Project is provided by members of Carnegie Hall’s Composer Club.

At a Glance

BARTÓK  Seven Pieces from Mikrokosmos

A classic of the pedagogical repertoire, the 153 short piano exercises of Bartók’s Mikrokosmos have found a home in both the practice studio and the concert hall. Before immigrating to the United States in 1940, the Hungarian composer arranged seven of the pieces for four hands in order to perform them with his wife, Ditta.


RAVEL  Sites auriculaires

Ravel was fresh out of the Paris Conservatoire when he composed the first of the two miniature tone poems that he cryptically labeled as “auricular sites.” Both the Spanish-flavored “Habanera” and its companion piece, “Entre cloches,” are harbingers of Ravel’s mature impressionistic style.


HARRISON BIRTWISTLE  Keyboard Engine, A Construction for Two Pianos

This highly virtuosic new duet by British composer Harrison Birtwistle, subtitled “A Construction for Two Pianos,” has been described as a “sequence of musical clockworks.” By turns tightly controlled and seemingly chaotic, the music uses repetition and cubist-like collage techniques to generate both energy and coherence.


MESSIAEN  Visions de l’amen

A renowned church organist, French composer Olivier Messiaen drew inspiration from his scholarly interest in ornithology as well as his religious faith. This sequence of seven “musical visions,” composed in occupied Paris during World War II, reflects his conviction that God was manifest in nature as surely as in the mysteries of Catholicism.


Pierre-Laurent Aimard

Widely acclaimed as a key figure in the music of our time and as a uniquely significant interpreter of piano repertoire from every age, Pierre-Laurent Aimard enjoys an internationally ...

Widely acclaimed as a key figure in the music of our time and as a uniquely significant interpreter of piano repertoire from every age, Pierre-Laurent Aimard enjoys an internationally celebrated career. Musical visionary and a pioneer artist renowned for his revelatory insights, he was awarded the 2017 Ernst von Siemens Music Prize in recognition of a life devoted to the service of music.

Mr. Aimard performs around the world each season with major orchestras under such conductors as Esa-Pekka Salonen, Peter Eötvös, Sir Simon Rattle, and Vladimir Jurowski. He has been invited to curate, direct, and perform in a number of residencies, with projects at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Vienna Konzerthaus, Philharmonie Berlin, Alte Oper Frankfurt, Lucerne Festival, University Mozarteum Salzburg, Cité de la musique, Tanglewood Music Festival, and Southbank Centre. He was the artistic director of the Aldeburgh Festival from 2009 to 2016; his final season was marked by a performance of Messiaen’s Catalogue d’oiseaux with the concerts programed from dawn to midnight.

This season, Mr. Aimard continues his three-year residency, curating an entire weekend dedicated to the music of Stockhausen. A milestone project celebrating the evolution of conventional pianism, he also takes it to the Lucerne Festival and Musikfest Berlin. As artist-in-residence at the Concertgebouw, Mr. Aimard tours with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra to Washington, DC, as well as to Naples. He is also in residence at the Edinburgh International Festival and Vienna Konzerthaus. Other highlights include recitals at the Elbphilharmonie, Tchaikovsky Concert Hall, Philharmonie de Paris, Auditorium Orchestre-national de Lyon, and Walt Disney Concert Hall.

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Tamara Stefanovich

Known for captivating interpretations of a wide repertoire, Tamara Stefanovich performs at the world’s major concert venues, including the Philharmonie Berlin, Suntory Hall, Royal ...

Known for captivating interpretations of a wide repertoire, Tamara Stefanovich performs at the world’s major concert venues, including the Philharmonie Berlin, Suntory Hall, Royal Albert Hall, and Wigmore Hall. Her festival appearances include the Festival International de Piano de la Roque d’Anthéron, Salzburger Festspiele, Styriarte Graz, and Beethovenfest Bonn. She has performed with such ensembles as The Cleveland Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, London Symphony Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Bamberger Symphoniker, Britten Sinfonia, Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, and Swedish Chamber Orchestra.

The 2018–2019 season features Ms. Stefanovich’s debut with the hr-Sinfonieorchester under Jonathan Stockhammer, giving the world premiere of Zeynep Gedizlioğlu’s new piano concerto. She returns to the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra (under Christian Eggen) and the Danish National Symphony Orchestra (under Michael Schønwandt) for performances of Hans Abrahamsen’s Left, alone. Together with Asko | Schönberg, she celebrates Reinbert de Leeuw’s 80th birthday. For the start of the season, she joins forces with Pierre-Laurent Aimard and the Lucerne Festival Orchestra for performances of Zimmermann’s Dialoge at the Lucerne Festival and Elbphilharmonie. Recitals with Stockhausen’s Mantra lead the duo to Ultima, Musikfest Berlin, and the Southbank Centre. In October, the duo embarks on an extensive US tour with concerts in New York, Chicago, Berkeley, and Chapel Hill. Further recitals see Ms. Stefanovich perform at the International Pharos Chamber Music Festival, Brucknerhaus Linz, SWR Aktuell Studio Mainz, Barbican Centre, and L’Auditori de Barcelona.

Recent engagements have included performances with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, MDR Leipzig Radio Symphony Orchestra, WDR Symphony Orchestra Cologne, Chamber Orchestra of Europe, and Orquestra Sinfônica do Estado de São Paulo. In 2015, she embarked on an extensive US recital tour to mark the 90th birthday of Pierre Boulez.

Ms. Stefanovich has collaborated with conductors Vladimir Ashkenazy, Osmo Vänskä, and Susanna Mälkki, as well as leading composers, including Pierre Boulez, Peter Eötvös, and György Kurtág. She regularly leads educational projects at London’s Barbican Centre, WDR Symphony Orchestra Cologne, and Klavier-Festival Ruhr.

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