Gary Dunning, President and Executive Director
Sir András Schiff, piano
Friday, February 26, 2016, 8pm — NEC’s Jordan Hall
(Boston) Celebrity Series of Boston will present pianist Sir András Schiff on Friday, February 26, 2016 at 8pm at NEC’s Jordan Hall, 30 Gainsborough Street, Boston, MA. The program will feature the last sonatas by Haydn, Beethoven, Mozart, and Schubert. This performance is an Aaron Richmond Recital, endowed by Nancy Richmond Winsten and the late Dr. Joseph Winsten in memory of Aaron Richmond, who founded Celebrity Series in 1938.
Tickets start at $65, and are available online at www.celebrityseries.org, by calling CelebrityCharge at (617) 482-6661 Monday-Friday 10:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m., or at the Jordan Hall Box Office.
This recital is the sixth Celebrity Series performance for Sir András Schiff; he made his Celebrity Series debut in March 1995, and his most recent concert was in November 2013.
Sir András Schiff is world-renowned and critically acclaimed as a pianist, conductor, pedagogue and lecturer. Born in Budapest, Hungary in 1953, he started piano lessons at age five with Elisabeth Vadász. He continued his musical studies at the Ferenc Liszt Academy with Professor Pál Kadosa, György Kurtág and Ferenc Rados, and in London with George Malcolm.
Having recently completed The Bach Project throughout the 2012-2013 and 2013-2014 concert seasons, North America prepares for The Last Sonatas, a series of three recitals comprising the final three sonatas of Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven and Schubert. The Last Sonatas takes place over the course of the next two seasons with the complete series slated for New York’s Carnegie Hall, San Francisco’s Symphony Hall, Los Angeles’s Disney Hall, Chicago’s Symphony Hall, Washington Performing Arts’ Strathmore Hall, The Vancouver Recital Society and University Musical Society of The University of Michigan. Further recitals are scheduled in Napa, La Jolla, Santa Fe, Scottsdale and Kansas City. In October 2015, the San Francisco Symphony and Los Angeles Philharmonic hosted this versatile artist in a series of concerts with orchestra and chorus – Sir András’s first performances in North America on the podium and at the piano with chorus, orchestra and soloists.
In his role as lecturer, Sir András Schiff has put together a round table forum that was presented on December 17 by New York’s 92nd Street Y, addressing the pianist’s belief that it is the responsibility of every politically-informed artist to speak out against racial injustice and persecution. Violinist Gidon Kremer and writer Assaf Gavron join the dialogue. As pedagogue, he partners with 92Y and SubCulture for “Sir András Schiff Selects: Young Pianists” – a three-concert series in February & March curated by Sir András and introducing rising young pianists Kuok-Wai Lio, Roman Rabinovich and Adam Golka.
Sir András Schiff has established a prolific discography, and since 1997 has been an exclusive artist for ECM New Series and its producer, Manfred Eicher. Recordings for ECM include the complete solo piano music of Beethoven and Janácek, two solo albums of Schumann piano pieces, his second recordings of the Bach Partitas and Goldberg Variations, The Well-Tempered Clavier, Books I and II and Beethoven’s Diabelli Variations recorded on two instruments: a Bechstein from 1921 and an original fortepiano from Vienna 1820 – the place and time of the composition. The pianist recently completed a recording in July at Beethovenhaus, Bonn on the Franz Brodmann Fortepiano used also for the Diabelli album. The all-Schubert disc featuring Sonata in B (D960), Sonata in G (D894), Moments Musicaux (D780) and the Impromptus will be released in fall 2015.
Orchestral engagements find Sir András Schiff performing mainly as both conductor and soloist. In 1999 he created his own chamber orchestra, the Cappella Andrea Barca, which consists of international soloists, chamber musicians and friends. He also works every year with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe.
Since childhood he has enjoyed playing chamber music, and from 1989 until 1998 was Artistic Director of the internationally praised “Musiktage Mondsee” chamber music festival near Salzburg. In 1995, together with Heinz Holliger, he founded the “Ittinger Pfingstkonzerte” in Kartause Ittingen, Switzerland. In 1998 he started a similar series, entitled “Homage to Palladio” at the Teatro Olimpico in Vicenza. From 2004 to 2007 he was Artist in Residence of the Kunstfest Weimar. In the 2007-8 season, he was Pianist in Residence of the Berlin Philharmonic.
Sir András Schiff has been awarded numerous international prizes and his relationship with publisher G Henle continues over the next few years with a joint edition of Mozart’s piano concertos and both volumes of The Well-Tempered Clavier. He is an Honorary Member of the Beethoven House in Bonn in recognition of his interpretations of Beethoven’s works, has received the Wigmore Hall Medal in appreciation of 30 years of music-making at Wigmore Hall, the Schumann Prize awarded by the city of Zwickau, the Golden Mozart-Medaille by the International Stiftung Mozarteum, the Order pour le mérite for Sciences and Arts, the Grosse Verdienstkreuz mit Stern der Bundesrepublik Deutschland and was made a Member of Honour of Vienna Konzerthaus. He was given The Royal Philharmonic Society’s Gold Medal, has been made a Special Supernumerary Fellow of Balliol College (Oxford, UK), and received honorary degrees from Leeds University and Music Schools in Budapest, Detmold and Munich.
In the spring of 2011 Sir András Schiff attracted attention because of his opposition to the alarming political development in Hungary, and in view of the ensuing attacks on him from some Hungarian Nationalists decided not to perform again in his home country.
In June 2014, he was awarded a Knighthood by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in the 2014 Birthday Honours.
“The Last Sonatas”
HAYDN: Sonata No. 62 in E-flat Major
BEETHOVEN: Sonata in c minor, Opus 111
MOZART: Sonata in D Major, K. 576
SCHUBERT: Sonata in B-flat Major, D. 960
About Celebrity Series of Boston
Celebrity Series of Boston was founded in 1938 by pianist and impresario Aaron Richmond. Over the course of its 77-year history, Celebrity Series has presented an array of the world’s greatest performing artists, including Sergei Rachmaninoff, Arturo Toscanini, Ignace Paderewski, Artur Rubenstein, Vladimir Horowitz, Glenn Gould, Fritz Kreisler, Jascha Heifetz, Isaac Stern, Andrés Segovia, Kirsten Flagstad, Marian Anderson, Luciano Pavarotti, Béla Bartók, Igor Stravinsky, Martha Graham, Ballet Russe De Monte Carlo, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Mstislav Rostropovich, and the New York City Opera Company.
The Celebrity Series has been bringing the very best performers–from orchestras and chamber ensembles, vocal and piano music, to dance companies, jazz, and more–to Boston’s major concert halls for 77 years. The Celebrity Series of Boston believes in the power of excellence and innovation in the performing arts to enrich life experiences, transform lives and build better communities. Through its education initiatives, the Celebrity Series seeks to build a community of Greater Boston where the performing arts are a valued, lifelong, shared experience–on stages, in schools, at home– everywhere. For more information on Celebrity Series of Boston, call (617) 482-2595 or visit us online at www.celebrityseries.org.
The Celebrity Series of Boston, Inc. receives generous support from Amy & Joshua Boger, Leslie & Howard Appleby, The Garbis & Arminé Barsoumian Charitable Foundation, the Boston Cultural Council, the Stephanie L. Brown Foundation, Charlesbank Capital Partners LLC, the Susanne Marcus Collins Foundation, Deloitte LLP, Donna & Mike Egan, EMC, Foley & Lardner LLP, Gabor Garai & Susan Pravda, David & Harriet Griesinger, the Charles and Cerise Jacobs Charitable Foundation, Paul L. King, The Royal Little Family Foundation, the Massachusetts Cultural Council, Joseph McNay, Stewart Myers, the National Endowment for the Arts, Eleanor & Frank Pao, The Peabody Foundation, PTC, The John S. and Cynthia Reed Foundation, The D.L. Saunders Real Estate Corp., the Stifler Family Foundation, Mr. and Mrs. Henri A. Termeer, Michael and Susan Thonis, Tufts Health Plan, Sanjay & Sangeeta Verma, Vertex Pharmaceuticals, Nancy Richmond Winsten, Anonymous, and many others.