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Carnegie Hall Presents

Víkingur Ólafsson, Piano

Tuesday, February 22, 2022 7:30 PM Zankel Hall
Víkingur Ólafsson by Ari Magg
Icelandic pianist Víkingur ÓlafssonGramophone magazine’s 2019 Artist of the Year—makes one of the season’s most eagerly awaited debuts. Ólafsson consistently earns global acclaim for his concert appearances, and his chart-topping recordings of J. S. Bach, Debussy, and Philip Glass are all critically lauded. Experience the next great Carnegie Hall debut by an artist whose “ability to paint with a thousand colors is magnificent” (International Piano).

Performers

Víkingur Ólafsson, Piano

Program

GALUPPI Andante spiritoso from Keyboard Sonata in F Minor

MOZART Rondo in F Major, K. 494

C.P.E. BACH Rondo in D Minor, Wq. 61, No. 4

CIMAROSA Keyboard Sonata in D Minor (arr. Víkingur Ólafsson)

MOZART Fantasy in D Minor, K. 397

MOZART Rondo in D Major, K. 485

CIMAROSA Keyboard Sonata in A Minor (arr. Víkingur Ólafsson)

HAYDN Piano Sonata in B Minor, Hob. XVI: 32

MOZART Gigue, K. 574

MOZART Piano Sonata in C Major, K. 545

MOZART Adagio from String Quintet in G Minor, K. 516 (arr. Víkingur Ólafsson)

GALUPPI Larghetto from Keyboard Sonata in C Minor

MOZART Piano Sonata in C Minor, K. 457

MOZART Adagio in B Minor, K. 540

MOZART Ave verum corpus, K. 618 (transcr. Liszt)


Encore:

J. S. BACH Andante from Organ Sonata No. 4, BWV 528 (arr. August Stradal)

Event Duration

The printed program will last approximately two hours, including one 20-minute intermission. Please note that there will be no late seating before intermission.

Listen to Selected Works

At a Glance

Haydn, Mozart, and C. P. E. Bach—the most eminent of J. S. Bach’s musical progeny—played key roles in the development of the Classical style, which was in full bloom by the time the 15 works to be heard tonight were composed in the late 1700s. Along with their lesser-known Italian contemporaries Galuppi and Cimarosa, these three northern European composers also incorporated into their music elements of the mid–18th-century galant style, whose playful elegance, transparent textures, and formal freedom offered an attractive alternative to the strict, intricately wrought, “learned” style of fugues and church music.

The emergence of the Classical style, predicated on clarity and formal symmetry, ran parallel to innovations in the design and technology of keyboard and other instruments. The so-called fortepiano was invented at the turn of the 18th century and soon rivaled the older harpsichord in popularity, but it wasn’t until the 1770s that it came into its own in the hands of such master craftsmen as Stein and Walter in Vienna and Broadwood in London. Although Galuppi and Cimarosa were chiefly associated with the opera house, the other three composers represented on this program testify to the piano’s increasing centrality in 18th-century musical life: C. P. E. Bach wrote a celebrated treatise on keyboard playing, Haydn habitually composed at the keyboard, and Mozart earned his living as a virtuoso pianist. 

Bios

Víkingur Ólafsson

Pianist Víkingur Ólafsson has made a profound impact with his remarkable combination of highest-level musicianship and visionary programs. His recordings for Deutsche Grammophon—Philip Glass: Piano Works (2017), Johann Sebastian Bach (2018), Debussy | Rameau (2020), and Mozart ...

Pianist Víkingur Ólafsson has made a profound impact with his remarkable combination of highest-level musicianship and visionary programs. His recordings for Deutsche Grammophon—Philip Glass: Piano Works (2017), Johann Sebastian Bach (2018), Debussy | Rameau (2020), and Mozart & Contemporaries (2021)—have captured the public and critical imagination and led to more than 260 million streams. The Daily Telegraph called
Mr. Ólafsson “the new superstar of classical piano,” while The New York Times dubbed him “Iceland’s Glenn Gould.”

Now one of the most sought-after artists today, Mr. Ólafsson’s multiple awards include Gramophone magazine’s 2019 Artist of the Year, the Opus Klassik Award for Instrumental Solo Recording (twice), and BBC Music Magazine’s 2019 Album of the Year. 

Mr. Ólafsson continues to perform with the world’s leading orchestras and serve as artist-in-residence at the top concert halls and festivals. He also works with some of today’s greatest composers.

A captivating communicator both on and off stage, Mr. Ólafsson’s significant talent extends to broadcasting, having presented several of his own series for television and radio. He was artist-in-residence for three months on BBC Radio 4’s flagship arts program, Front Row. Recently, he reached millions of listeners around the world broadcasting live during lockdown from an empty Harpa concert hall in Reykjavík. 

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