Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Pianist András Schiff is Knighted

by Rodney Punt

LA Opus has been notified that eminent pianist Sir András Schiff, a frequent visitor to Southern California, has been awarded Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II in the 2014 Birthday Honours. BBC News had this to say about the recent announcement:

"Schiff has been hailed as the greatest musician Hungary has produced since the composers Bela Bartok and Zoltan Kodaly. Alongside his brilliance as a pianist, he has a reputation as one of the great musical thinkers. His lectures on Beethoven's 32 piano sonatas remain a central tenet of music broadcasting."

A British citizen since 2001, Sir András Schiff was recently awarded the Royal Philharmonic Society Gold Medal in December 2013 and the International Classical Music Award 2012, in the category “Solo Instrumental Recording of the Year” for his recording of “Geistervariationen” with works by Robert Schumann (ECM). Recitals and special cycles, such as the major keyboard works of J.S. Bach, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Chopin, Schumann and Bartók, form an important part of his activities. Since 2004 he has performed complete cycles of the 32 Beethoven Piano Sonatas in 20 cities, and the cycle in the Zurich Tonhalle was recorded live.

With renewed interest these days in the "Classical Style", Schiff will probe some of the later sonatas of Mozart, Haydn, Beethoven and Schubert in a North American tour in early 2015 that includes the cities of New York, Washington DC, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Vancouver, and Ann Arbor. His local solo recitals are under the auspices of the LA Phil at the Walt Disney Concert Hall.

The LA Phil programs, one each in the Colburn Celebrity Series 1 & 2, are as follows:

Wed FEB 18, 2015, 8:00pm (CCS-2)
HAYDN Piano Sonata in C, Hob. XVI:50
BEETHOVEN Sonata in E, Op. 109
MOZART Sonata in C, K. 545
SCHUBERT Piano Sonata in C minor, D. 958

Wed MAR 4, 2015, 8:00pm (CCS-1)
MOZART Sonata in B-flat, K. 570
BEETHOVEN Sonata in A-flat, Op. 110
HAYDN Sonata in D, Hob. XVI:51
SCHUBERT Sonata in A, D. 959

Further details and tickets: LA Phil tickets


Photo of András Schiff used by permission of Kirshbaum, Demler & Associates.
Rodney Punt can be contacted at [email protected]

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