Chicago Symphony Orchestra
Riccardo Muti, conductor
Following his return from the USA and Canada, Kirill Gerstein continues his exploration of Beethoven’s chamber works with Clemens Hagen and Koljar Blacher. They present the composer’s Violin Sonata No. 9, Cello Sonata No. 3 and Piano Trio Op. 70 No. 2 in Basel (27 Oct), Navarra (28 Oct) and Florence (31 Oct). Kirill also presents three further performances of Strauss’s Enoch Arden with Bruno Ganz in Pirmasens (29 Oct), Iffeldorf (2 Nov) and Munich (23 Nov).
Kirill returns to more Beethoven in November when he performs his Piano Concerto No. 4 with the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra in Dorset (25 Nov), Exeter (26 Nov) and Basingstoke (27 Nov). Prior to this, he gives two performances of Rachmaninov’s Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini with the Oregon Symphony Orchestra under Carlos Kalmar (7 and 9 Nov).
No stranger to jazz, Kirill Gerstein performed Gershwin’s two great jazz-influenced piano concertos with orchestras in Canada earlier this month and received stellar reviews.
Ottawa Citizen on Rhapsody in Blue with the National Arts Centre Orchestra:
“Kirill Gerstein was the dynamic soloist for Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue…his reading of Gershwin was vivid and utterly modern. He adds freedom, lightness and subtle swing to unassailable technical facility and an extra-large sound. His improvisations sounded fluent and organically integrated, and he gave Gershwin’s familiar music spontaneity and posh playfulness.”
Musical Toronto on the Piano Concerto in F with the Toronto Symphony:
“Gerstein’s rendition was…commanding and jazzy…doing justice to the labile shifts in mood in the first movement, offering a beautiful relaxed and bluesy solo in the second movement, and interesting voicing in various sections. An especially strong brass section, with trombone and trumpet solos with just the right touch of grit, enhanced the performance.”
Having opened the new season with a performance of the new urtext edition of Tchaikovsky’s First Piano Concerto in Verona with the London Philharmonic Orchestra as well as making return appearances at the Jerusalem International Chamber Music Festival, the latter half of September sees Kirill Gerstein appear in concerto performances with the hr-Sinfonieorchester under Edward Gardner (24-25 September) for Rachmaninov’s Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini and the Toronto Symphony Orchestra under James Gaffigan (30 September, 1 and 3 October) for Gershwin’s Piano Concerto in F.
Just prior to these performances, Gerstein joins forces again with Bruno Ganz for a presentation of Strauss’s Enoch Arden in Switzerland paired with Liszt’s Transcendental Études.
Pianist Kirill Gerstein has received an ECHO Klassik Award in the category “Concerto Recording of the Year (19th Century Music)” for his world premiere recording of the 1879 version of Tchaikovsky’s first Piano Concerto and Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 2 in G minor, Op. 16, performed with the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin and conducted by James Gaffigan. The recording was released in the U.S. in March 2015 by Myrios Classics.
For the recording, Mr. Gerstein was granted special access from the Tchaikovsky Museum in Klin (Moscow) to new score material based on the latest musicological research and Tchaikovsky’s own conducting score from his last public concert. A new critical Urtext edition of the score was published by the Tchaikovsky Museum in 2015 in association with the 175th anniversary of the composer’s birth.
Kirill Gerstein said, “When I first heard of the research by the Tchaikovsky archive in Klin into the urtext version of Tchaikovsky’s First Piano Concerto, I knew that this was a project I wanted to be involved in. Since then, it has been my mission to draw attention to the version of this concerto that Tchaikovsky himself conducted. I am honored and thrilled by the recognition awarded our recording by the ECHO Klassik Prize.”