Naples Philharmonic Orchestra
Hans Graf, conductor
Kirill returns to Toledo to perform Brahms’ two piano concertos in back-to-back concerts on Friday, February 28 and Saturday, March 1 with conductor Stefan Sanderling and the Toledo Symphony.
In a preview by The Toledo Blade, Kirill said, “Hearing both concertos presents a very complete portrait of Brahms. The first concerto is a youthful, hyper-romantic, and dramatic work; the second is still dramatic but with a certain classical perfection to its form.”
The Blade said, “Gerstein is a hot property these days. After winning the 2010 Gilmore Artist Award, a unique and lucrative prize given every four years to a pianist of promise, the Russian-born prodigy, who had developed both classical and jazz chops, has been busy.
“He commissioned new boundary-crossing works and has performed with nearly every major orchestra in the United States and abroad. He’ll be featured soloist at this year’s Gilmore Award ceremonies in Kalamazoo, Mich., where he’ll perform with singer Storm Large.”
Kirill is looking forward to performing in Toledo again.
“I enjoy coming to Toledo,” said Gerstein. “I like the orchestra, the hall, and the museum.”
The Boston Globe tells the tale of how Old Friend, a piece Kirill commissioned from composer Timo Andres, came into fruition.
You can hear the Boston premiere of Old Friend tonight at Kirill’s recital, which includes works by Haydn (Variations in F minor), Schumann (Carnaval), and Mussorgsky (Pictures at an Exhibition), at Jordan Hall.
The McCarter Theatre welcomes Kirill back to Princeton this Tuesday, January 28, after his performance there two years ago. In the feature below, in which Kirill is considered to possess “a voracious musical curiosity and technique to spare,” Kirill discusses how he carefully curates his recital programs and how receiving the Gilmore Artist Award in 2010 changed his life and career.
In a piece in The New York Times‘ Arts & Leisure section this coming Sunday on classical music’s centennial commemoration of World War I this year, Kirill discusses the significance of the historical context in which Ravel composed his Piano Concerto for the Left Hand, which Kirill will perform in March with the Dresden Philharmonic:
“There’s the biographical element of the piece … It is for one hand, and we all know why the other hand is not present. But I also think that the piece is unique: It is one of a handful of pieces that is truly very dark in Ravel. I always find that it has this kind of dark glow.” –Kirill Gerstein
For 160 years, the pianos made by Steinway & Sons have been considered the finest in the world. So when hedge fund billionaire John Paulson recently bought the company, it struck fear in the hearts of musicians: Would the famously handcrafted pianos be changed, for the sake of efficiency? Paulson, who owns several Steinways himself, says nothing will change.
Great pianists need great pianos. Vladimir Horowitz, the famous Russian pianist, used to travel with his own personal Steinway when he concertized around the world.
Most concert halls and conservatories in America own Steinways, and pianists from Lang Lang to Harry Connick, Jr. to Billy Joel are Steinway artists.
This fall, Russian pianist Kirill Gerstein was in New York City, set to appear with the New York Philharmonic. He sat at the keyboard of a Steinway D, a 9-foot concert grand, at Steinway Hall, the company’s lavish showroom in Manhattan.
NPR’s Morning Edition, December 17, 2013
Kirill Gerstein and violist Tabea Zimmermann’s “Sonatas for Viola & Piano Vol. 2” featuring works by Brahms, Schubert and Franck, released on Myrios Classics, received a prestigious 2013 Diapason D’or de l’Année award in the Chamber Music category.