Lucerne Festival at the Piano 2013

SwitzerlandSwitzerland Lucerne Festival  at the Piano 2013

16 – 24 November 2013

During this year’s Piano Festival, held in mid-November, international keyboard virtuosos will concentrate on the great Romantic composers – in the process bringing miniature musical forms into focus. Schubert, Schumann, and Chopin will therefore be prominently featured, as when the Russian pianists Evgeny Kissin and Grigory Sokolov demonstrate their gifts as Schubert interpreters. Robert Schumann’s poetic sound worlds will enchant listeners in recitals by Gabriela Montero and Kirill Gerstein, and Lise de la Salle will explore two ballades by Frédéric Chopin in her third LUCERNE FESTIVAL recital. Toshio Hosokawa meanwhile shows how miniature forms continue to be relevant in contemporary piano music. Four of his Etudes will be given their world premiere by the Japanese pianist Momo Kodama.

The Festival’s three artists who make their debuts – Alexej Gorlatch, Nareh Arghamanyan, and Adam Laloum – will also turn to works by these three Romantic composers. At Piano Off-Stage, the Jazz festival within the Festival, ten renowned jazz pianists will once again perform for five nights in Lucerne’s bars and restaurants. To conclude this week dedicated to the piano, Maurizio Pollini will immerse himself in the universes both Frédéric Chopin and Claude Debussy create in their respective sets of Préludes.

Piano Concerts and Recitals

Evgeny Kissin will play two programs which he has conceived especially for Lucerne. In his recital on 16 November he will pair sonatas by Schubert and Scriabin. Andon20 November Kissin per forms Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1 in B-flat minor, joined by conductor Lawrence Foster and the Chamber Orchestra of Europe.On 18 November pianist and composer Fazıl Say juxtaposes piano sonatas by Mozart and Beethoven with pieces by Bernd Alois Zimmermann and Stravinsky, as well as with Nocturnes by Chopin. Indeed, such miniature forms as nocturnes, etudes, piano pieces, moments musicaux, ballades, and preludes serve as a recurring thread throughout the program ming. In his recital on 17 November, for example, Grigory Sokolov performs impromptus and piano pieces by Franz Schubert. And on 23 November the Japanese pianist Momo Kodama will present works that were originally written as practice pieces, focusing on the contemporary cycle Etudes I-VI for piano by the Japanese composer Toshio Hosokawa, which combines Japanese musical traditions with the European avant-garde. Four of these six etudes will receive their pre miere on this concert. Kodama will pair these works with Johann Sebastian Bach’s “Italian Concerto” as well as Etudes by Claude Debussy. And on 23 November Lise de la Salle will compare and contrast Bach’s masterful polyphony with variations by Brahms and Chopin’s Ballades 1 and 4.

Gabriela Montero appears on 21 November in a recital that will include her improvisations on themes provided by the audience. On the following day Murray Perahia plays and conducts Beethoven’s Fifth Piano Concerto from the keyboard, accompanied by the Academy of St Martin in the Fields, so as to underline the chamber music-like interchange between the solo part and the orchestra. Kirill Gerstein, winner of the Gilmore Artist Award in 2010 and the Avery Fisher Grant, appears in his first Lucerne solo recital on 24 November, when he will combine the varied sound worlds of Haydn, Schumann, and Mussorgsky. In their respective Preludes, the richness of Chopin’s and Debussy’s musical imagination is reflected in miniature forms: on 24 November, for the Piano Festival’s closing concert, Maurizio Pollini will juxtapose Chopin’s Opus 28 and the first volume of Debussy’s Préludes.

Debut Series

For the seventh year in a row, LUCERNE FESTIVAL at the Piano presents the Debut series, and this year introduces three young pianists: Alexej Gorlatch, Nareh Arghamanyan, and Adam Laloum. Alexej Gorlatch captured no fewer than three awards at the International ARD Music Competition in Munich in 2011; Southwest German Radio is currently presenting him as part of their “New Talent” series – he makes his Lucerne debut on 20 November playing Beethoven, Schubert, and Chopin. The Armenian pianist Nareh Arghamanyan, winner of numerous competitions, including First Prize in the Montreal International Musical Competition in 2008, will showcase her multifaceted playing on 21 November in Lucerne with works by Bach, Schumann, and Rachmaninoff. And the French pianist Adam Laloum, winner of the Clara Haskil Competition in 2009, closes out this year’s Debut series on 22 November with a program of works by Schubert and Schumann.

Piano Lectures

On 23 November in the KKL auditorium, Martin Meyer, arts editor of the “Neue Zürcher Zeitung,” will devote himself to the etude as a genre from Scarlatti through Chopin, Liszt, and Rachmaninoff up to Ligeti – a fitting topic for the evening’s recital by Momo Kodama. In the second part he will discuss older live and studio recordings from the archives which have been made available in recent years. Meyer will compare and contrast these performances by pianists from Alfred Cortot through Friedrich Gulda and Martha Argerich to Van Cliburn, Byron Janis, and Glenn Gould with piano music today.

Piano Off-Stage

During the Piano Off-Stage series, now in its eleventh year, Lucerne becomes the gathering place for such newcomers to the scene as Emmet Cohen and Matyas Gayerand for established greats like Alessandro d’Episcopo and Dave Ruosch, as well as the pianists Aaron Goldberg, Kuno Kürner, Jan Luley, Ayako Shirasaki,Stephanie Trick, and Christian Willisohn. Together, they will cover the entire world of piano jazz: from blues, barrelhouse, and boogie-woogie through swing, soul and post-bop to modern mainstream. On Opening Night at the Luzerner Saal in the KKL, they will be introduced in conversation with Andreas Müller-Crépon and, of course, at the keyboard. The series offers five off-stage nights with over 50 performances in bars and restaurants throughout Lucerne. Venues include the KKL foyer, the KKL’s Seebar, the Havanna Bar, as well as the following hotels: The Hotel, Wilden Mann, Des Balances, Schweizerhof, National, Palace, and Montana. Admission to all Piano Off-Stage events is free.

Ticket Sales – This year advance ticket sales begin six weeks earlier than last year:

· Tickets may be purchased online or by written orders beginning Monday, 5 August 2013, online at 12.00 noon at (via post or fax +41 (0)41 226 44 85)

· Tickets may be purchased by telephone beginning Monday, 16 September 2013: t +41 (0)41 226 44 80, weekdays 10.00 am – 5.00 pm

· New: Tickets may be purchased directly at the KKL ticket office throughout LUCERNE FESTIVAL in Summer, from 12 August to 15 September 2013, at the KKL Luzern, daily 10.00 am – 6.00 pm

· Tickets may be purchased at the ticket office beginning Saturday, 16 November 2013, at the KKL Luzern, daily 10.00 am – 6.00 pm