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Nobuyuki Tsujii, Piano

Friday, May 10, 2019 8 PM Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage
Nobuyuki Tsujii by Giorgia Bertazzi
Please note that Murray Perahia has withdrawn from this recital due to medical reasons. Nobuyuki Tsujii will perform in his place.

The 2009 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition winner returns to Carnegie Hall for a program that showcases his “singing tone and eloquent phrasing” (London's Evening Standard). Nobuyuki Tsujii's “sensitive ear [and] light touch” (Financial Times) are ideally suited to the delicate timbres and subtle colors that make the music of three French masters so beautiful, while his virtuosity intensifies the drama of Chopin’s passionate scherzos.


Nobuyuki Tsujii, Piano


SATIE Trois Gymnopédies

DEBUSSY Images, Book I

RAVEL Sonatine

CHOPIN Scherzo No. 1

CHOPIN Scherzo No. 2

CHOPIN Scherzo No. 3

CHOPIN Scherzo No. 4


DEBUSSY "Clair de lune" from Suite bergamasque

NIKOLAI KAPUSTIN Prelude: Allegro assai from Eight Concert Etudes, Op. 40, No. 1

FOSTER "Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair" (arr. Nobuyuki Tsujii)

CHOPIN Etude in C Minor, Op. 10, No. 12, "Revolutionary"

Event Duration

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

At a Glance

SATIE  Trois Gymnopédies

The leader of a group of irreverently anti-Romantic composers known as “Les Six,” Erik Satie exerted a powerful influence over a long line of composers, from Debussy and Stravinsky to John Cage and Steve Reich. The three closely related piano pieces known as Gymnopédies, after an ancient Greek ceremonial dance, are among his earliest and most enduringly popular works.


DEBUSSY  Images, Book I

At once radical and traditionalist, Debussy rebelled against the ponderous academic style of establishment composers like Saint-Saëns and d’Indy, urging his compatriots to return to the “pure French tradition” that he admired in the music of Rameau. Debussy’s first book of Images, composed between 1901 and 1905, combines an homage to the Baroque master with a pair of exquisitely crafted tone poems.


RAVEL  Sonatine

As a member of the Parisian artists’ circle known as “Les Apaches,” the young Ravel aligned himself with the gadflies who stood apart from France’s hidebound cultural establishment. The Sonatine, with its graceful lyricism and crystalline textures, anticipates the novel harmonies that would characterize his soon-to-be-finished piano cycle Miroirs.


CHOPIN  Four Scherzos

In his four scherzos, as in his contemporaneous polonaises and ballades, Chopin deliberately set out to work on a grander scale than in his earlier waltzes, mazurkas, nocturnes, and other salon pieces. Composed over a period of some eight years, the scherzos illustrate both Chopin’s innovative approach to the keyboard, and the extraordinary range and subtlety of his musical language.


Nobuyuki Tsujii

Described as the “definition of virtuosity” (The Observer), Japanese pianist Nobuyuki “Nobu” Tsujii won the joint gold medal at the 2009 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. Blind since birth, he has gone on to earn an international reputation for the passion and ...

Described as the “definition of virtuosity” (The Observer), Japanese pianist Nobuyuki “Nobu” Tsujii won the joint gold medal at the 2009 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. Blind since birth, he has gone on to earn an international reputation for the passion and excitement he brings to his live performances.

Mr. Tsujii has appeared worldwide in concerts with leading orchestras that include the Mariinsky Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, BBC Philharmonic,
Munich Philharmonic, NHK Symphony Orchestra, Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra, Tokyo Symphony Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Japan Philharmonic Orchestra, Seattle Symphony, Filarmonica della Scala, and Sinfonieorchester Basel. He has performed under the baton of Valery Gergiev, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Vladimir Spivakov, Juanjo Mena, and Vasily Petrenko, among others.

As a recitalist, Mr. Tsujii has performed in major cities across North America, and he regularly appears at prestigious European venues that include Paris’s Théâtre des Champs-Élysées, Berlin’s Philharmonie, and Vienna’s Musikverein. Highlights of the 2017–2018 season included concerts with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic and Mr. Petrenko; performances at Moscow’s White Nights Festival with Mr. Gergiev; and concerts at Vienna’s Musikverein with the Tonkünstler Orchestra and Yutaka Sado.

This season, Mr. Tsujii returned to the Iceland Symphony Orchestra under Mr. Ashkenazy and the Mariinsky Orchestra under Mr. Gergiev. He also toured Asia and the East Coast of the United States with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra. In London, Mr. Tsujii made his debut in the Southbank Centre’s International Piano Series. Additional engagements this season included appearances at the International Mstislav Rostropovich Festival, as well as a number of recitals at Berlin’s Philharmonie and Stuttgart’s Liederhalle, among others.

An exclusive recording artist for Avex Classics International, Mr. Tsujii’s albums include Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2 with the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin; Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1 with Mr. Sado and the BBC Philharmonic; Beethoven’s “Emperor” Concerto with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra; and recital recordings of works by Chopin, Mozart, Debussy, and Liszt. Last season, Mr. Tsujii recorded Rachmaninoff’s Variations on a Theme of Paganini under Mr. Petrenko with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic. A live DVD recording of Mr. Tsujii’s 2011 Carnegie Hall recital debut was named DVD of the Month by Gramophone, as was the documentary Touching the Sound: The Improbable Journey of Nobuyuki Tsujii.

Mr. Tsujii’s international tours are supported by All Nippon Airways (ANA).

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