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Thursday, April 11, 2013

Tchaikovsky Celebration @ Utah Symphony (SLC: April 19, 20)

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Media Contact:
Jon Miles | Vice President, Marketing & Public Relations
jmiles@usuo.org | (801)869-9021


SALT LAKE CITY—      The Utah Symphony will conclude a two week Tchaikovsky celebration with a performance of all three of Tchaikovsky’s piano concerti featuring celebrated Canadian pianist Louis Lortie.

Lortie will tackle the feat with the Utah Symphony under the baton of Music Director Thierry Fischer, April 19 and 20 at 8 p.m. in Abravanel Hall.  The program will also include a performance of Arnold Schoenberg’s imaginary film score, “Begleitungsmusic zu einer Lichtspielscene.” 

As a man known for his versatility and prolific works, Tchaikovsky wrote three unique and equally different piano concerti. 

Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1 is his most popular concerto with its stunning and identifiable tune in the introduction.  The concerto received disapproval from famous pianist Nicholai Rubenstein who said it was, “clumsy…badly written…. and vulgar.”  Despite Rubenstein’s initial distain, the concerto was wildly successful with audiences and later embraced by Rubenstein himself.  

Piano Concerto No. 2 eventually became a dedication and peace offering to Rubenstein who had been a long-time advocate of Tchaikovsky’s works.  This concerto wasn’t as widely accepted initially by audiences due to its length.  Tchaikovsky made edits and cuts after the premiere, and some later adjustments were made without Tchaikovsky’s consent. 

The third concerto is Tchaikovsky’s unfinished Concerto No. 3. Unfortunately, Tchaikovsky fell ill and wasn’t able to complete or hear this concerto performed.  It was initially labeled as “first movement” and could have possibly been meant for the first movement of a 7th Symphony Tchaikovsky was working on, but one cannot know for sure.

Schoenberg’s “Beleitungsmusik zu einer Lichtspielscene” was commissioned for a silent film by Heinrichshofen Verlag, but the opportunity ran counter to Schoenberg’s view of art and his own compositions.

Fischer and Toby Tolokan, Utah Symphony Vice President of Artistic Planning, will present a free pre-concert chat each night, one hour prior to the start of the performance on the orchestra level of Abravanel Hall.

Single tickets for the performances range from $18 to $53 for April 12 and 13, 2013 and can be purchased by calling (801) 355-ARTS (2787), in person at the Abravanel hall ticket office (123 W. South Temple) or by visiting www.utahsymphony.org.  Season ticket holders and those desiring group discounts should call (801) 533- NOTE (6683).  All ticket prices are subject to change and availability.  Ticket prices will increase $5 when purchased on the day of the performance.   

About Louis Lortie
French-Canadian pianist Louis Lortie has attracted critical acclaim throughout Europe, Asia, and the United States. Mr. Lortie has performed complete Beethoven sonata cycles at London's Wigmore Hall, Berlin's Philharmonie, and the Sala Grande del Conservatorio Giuseppe Verdi in Milan. As both pianist and conductor with the Montreal Symphony, he has performed all five Beethoven concertos and all of the Mozart concertos. Mr. Lortie has also won widespread acclaim for his interpretation of Ravel and Chopin. He performed the complete works of Ravel in London and Montreal for the BBC and CBC, and is renowned all over the world for his performances of the complete Chopin etudes.

In 2012-2013 he performs Gershwin in Sao Paulo with Tortelier, Liszt with NHK Tokyo and Dutoit, Chopin with the Cleveland Orchestra and Van Zweden, Schubert and Liszt with Krivine in Utrecht, Mozart with the Royal Philharmonic and Dutoit; tours with the La Scala Orchestra playing Brahms 2 and with the Beethoven Orchester Bonn playing Beethoven 4 and 5. He returns to Chicago's Orchestra Hall and other important venues to perform a recital program of opera transcriptions called "Lortie goes to the Opera (Mostly with Wagner)". Other recitals include Copenhagen, Osaka, Cremona and Dresden.

Mr. Lortie has performed with the world's leading conductors, including Riccardo Chailly, Lorin Maazel, Kurt Masur, Seiji Ozawa, Charles Dutoit, Kurt Sanderling, Neeme Järvi, Sir Andrew Davis, Wolfgang Sawallisch, Sir Mark Elder, and Osmo Vänskä. He has also been involved in many chamber-music projects with such musicians as Frank Peter Zimmermann, Leonidas Kavakos, Renaud and Gautier Capuçon, Jan Vogler, Augustin Dumay, the Takács Quartet, and Gidon Kremer. His regular piano-duo partner is fellow Canadian Hélène Mercier.

Louis Lortie studied in Montreal with Yvonne Hubert (a pupil of the legendary Alfred Cortot), in Vienna with Beethoven specialist Dieter Weber, and subsequently with Schnabel disciple Leon Fleisher. He made his debut with the Montreal Symphony at the age of 13; three years later, his first appearance with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra led to an historic tour of the People's Republic of China and Japan. In 1984, he won First Prize in the Busoni Competition and was also prizewinner at the Leeds Competition. In 1992, he was named Officer of the Order of Canada, and received both the Order of Quebec and an honorary doctorate from Université Laval. He has lived in Berlin since 1997 and also has homes in Canada and Italy.

Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Concerto No. 3 for Piano and Orchestra in E-flat major, No. 3, op. 75
Louis Lortie, Piano

Concerto No. 2 for Piano and Orchestra in G major, Opus 44
I.  Allegro brillante e molto vivace
II.  Andante non troppo
III.  Allegro con fuoco
Louis Lortie, Piano


Arnold Schoenberg
Begleitungsmusic zu einer Lichtspielscene, Op. 34
Drohende Gefahr - Angst - Katastrophe
Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Concerto No. 1 for Piano and Orchestra in B-flat minor, Opus 23
I.  Allegro non troppo e molto maestoso
II.  Andantino semplice
III.  Allegro con fuoco
Louis Lortie, Piano

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