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The program features selections from, or complete presentations of,
three sets of works 
for solo piano: Bartók’s two Chromatic Inventions from the
sixth volume of his
MikrokosmosBach’s Three-Part Inventions, BWV 787-801,
and Liszt’s Transcendental

 Mr. Gerstein also makes his debut with the New Jersey
Symphony Orchestra performing Bernstein’s The Age of Anxiety led by
Music Director Jacques Lacombe at NJPAC in Newark on March 12 and 13,
in New Brunswick, NJ on March 14, and in Morristown, NJ on March 15

Myrios Classics releases Mr. Gerstein’s latest album featuring the world-premiere
recording of the 1879 version of Tchaikovsky’s First Piano Concerto on March 10

NEW YORK, NY (February 13, 2015)—Pianist Kirill Gerstein brings the practice room to the concert hall in a recital of works from solo collections by Bartók, Bach, and Liszt that were originally written to be pedagogical exercises but are now considered feats of pianistic virtuosity. The recital takes place on Monday, March 9 at 7:30 p.m. at Carnegie’s Zankel Hall as part of its Keyboard Virtuosos series. At the center of his program are Bach’s fifteen Three-Part Inventions, also known as his Sinfonias, BWV 787-801, which are bookended by Bartók’s Mikrokosmos Nos. 145a and 145b Chromatic Inventions from Book VI and Liszt’s twelve Transcendental Études, both inspired in part by Bach.

Tickets priced from $43 to $50 are available through CarnegieCharge by phone at (212) 247-7800, online at, or in person at the Carnegie box office.

Bach’s Three-Part Inventions (Sinfonias), along with his Two-Part Inventions and the widely known Well-Tempered Clavier, are some of the most definitive works for keyboard practice. Bartók’s Chromatic Inventions are a reference to Bach’s contrapuntal form and his Mikrokosmos was conceived to be a smaller collection of pieces for a beginner but over time grew to be a collection of 153 pieces that ascend in technical difficulty over six volumes. The Transcendental Études recall Bach’s practice of writing a set of music to encompass a set of key signatures, in that Liszt intended to write 24 études, one in each major and minor key like Bach did with The Well-Tempered Clavier, although in the end the Transcendental Études comprised 12 études in only neutral or flat keys. It originated as the Étude en douze exercices, a set of far less technically demanding exercises by a 15-year-old Liszt in 1826, which were elaborated upon to become the Douze Grandes Études published in 1837, and revised to become what is known and performed today as the Transcendental Études in 1852.

Mr. Gerstein’s recital is followed by a return to the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC), after his January 2015 appearance with Philadelphia Orchestra and Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin, to play Bernstein’s jazz-influenced Symphony No. 2, The Age of Anxiety, in his first performances with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra and Music Director Jacques Lacombe. Mr. Gerstein, who taught himself to play jazz while learning classical music by listening to his parents’ extensive record collection, studied jazz piano at the Berklee School of Music starting at the age of 14 as the youngest student ever admitted after impressing Gary Burton, the dean of curriculum at the time, with his sophisticated talent in both musical styles. He is currently both artist-in-residence in the Piano Department at Berklee and a member of the piano faculty at The Boston Conservatory, in the first joint appointment between both institutions, for which he teaches piano students individually and in seminars and coaches chamber music. He also will be creating an ensemble with jazz and classical musicians from both schools.

Mr. Gerstein says, “I feel that teaching has enriched my playing as much as my experiences as a concert artist have benefitted my teaching. Because of my early experiences in classical and jazz styles, I am convinced that there are more similarities than differences between the various music styles, and that there is much to be gained from a stylistically broad, interconnected study of music. I am grateful for the opportunity to share my cross-discipline training both in performance and in the classroom.”

The NJPAC performances take place on Thursday, March 12 at 1:30 p.m. and Friday March 13 at 8:00 p.m. Tickets priced from $20 to $87 are available through the NJ Symphony at or 1-800-255-3476 or NJPAC through or 1-888-466-5722. Mr. Gerstein also performs The Age of Anxiety with the NJ Symphony at the State Theatre in New Brunswick, NJ, on Saturday, March 14 at 8:00 p.m., and at the Mayo Performing Arts Center in Morristown, NJ on Sunday March 15 at 3:00 p.m.

On Tuesday, March 10, Myrios Classics releases Mr. Gerstein’s first orchestral album on the label, which features the world-premiere recording of a new scholarly urtext edition of Tchaikovsky’s second version of his Piano Concerto No. 1, based on the composer’s own conducting score, and Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 2, performed with the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin. The recording is available for pre-order on Amazon.

About Kirill Gerstein

Kirill Gerstein has proven to be one of today’s most intriguing and versatile musicians, with a masterful technique, discerning intelligence, and a musical curiosity that has led him to explore repertoire spanning centuries and numerous styles. He is the recipient of the 2010 Gilmore Artist Award and received the First Prize at the 2001 Arthur Rubinstein Piano Competition in Tel Aviv. Mr. Gerstein tours extensively as a recitalist and concert soloist and often performs chamber music with his colleagues.

Highlights of the 2014-15 season include performances with the Boston, Nashville, San Francisco, St. Louis, and Vancouver symphonies and the Minnesota and Philadelphia orchestras, among others. Internationally, he performs with the Vienna Philharmonic, London’s Philharmonia and BBC Symphony Orchestras, the Gewandhaus Leipzig Orchestra, Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, and São Paulo Symphony Orchestra.

Prior recordings for Myrios Classics include two recital albums: Imaginary Pictures, which pairs Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition with Schumann’s Carnaval, and an album of works by Schumann, Liszt, and Oliver Knussen. Both recordings have been chosen by The New York Times as a “best recording of the year.” Mr. Gerstein has also collaborated with violist Tabea Zimmerman on recordings of sonatas for viola and piano.

Born in Voronezh in southwestern Russia, Mr. Gerstein studied piano at a special music school for gifted children and then formally studied both classical and jazz after moving to the US at the age of 14—first jazz piano at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, then classical piano at the Manhattan School of Music where he completed both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees by the age of 20.

# # #

Monday, March 9 at 7:30 p.m.
Carnegie Hall, Zankel Hall
New York, NY

Kirill Gerstein, piano

BARTÓK           No. 145a Chromatic Invention (III) from Mikrokosmos, Sz. 107, Book VI
No. 145b Chromatic Invention (III) from Mikrokosmos, Sz. 107, Book VI
BACH               Three-Part Inventions (Sinfonias)
No. 1 in C major, BWV 787
No. 2 in C minor, BWV 788
No. 3 in D major, BWV 789
No. 4 in D minor, BWV 790
No. 5 in E-flat major, BWV 791
No. 6 in E major, BWV 792
No. 7 in E minor, BWV 793
No. 8 in F major, BWV 794
No. 9 in F minor, BWV 795
No. 10 in G major, BWV 796
No. 11 in G minor, BWV 797
No. 12 in A major, BWV 798
No. 13 in A minor, BWV 799
No. 14 in B-flat major, BWV 800
No. 15 in B minor, BWV 801
LISZT                Transcendental ÉtudesS. 139
No. 1 in C major, “Preludio”
No. 2 in A minor – Molto vivace
No. 3 in F major, “Paysage”
No. 4 in D minor, “Mazeppa”
No. 5 in B-flat major, “Feux Follets”
No. 6 in G minor, “Vision”
No. 7 in E-flat major, “Eroica”
No. 8 in C minor, “Wilde Jagd”
No. 9 in A-flat major, “Ricordanza”
No. 10 in F minor – Allegro agitato molto
No. 11 in D-flat major, “Harmonies du Soir”
No. 12 in B-flat minor, “Chasse-Neige”

Thursday, March 12 at 1:30 p.m.
Friday, March 13 at 8:00 p.m.
New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC)
Newark, NJ

Saturday, March 14 at 8:00 p.m.
State Theatre
New Brunswick, NJ

Sunday, March 15 at 3:00 p.m.
Mayo Performing Arts Center
Morristown, NJ

Jacques Lacombe, conductor
Kirill Gerstein, piano
New Jersey Symphony Orchestra

BERNSTEIN      Symphony No. 2, The Age of Anxiety
MAHLER            Symphony No. 1, “Titan”

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