Shriver Hall Concert Series Kicks Off 2023-24 Season With Pianist Angela Hewitt

Free Discovery series kicks off with pianist Yilun Xu, Winner of the 2023 Yale Gordon Competition.

By: Sep. 18, 2023
Shriver Hall Concert Series Kicks Off 2023-24 Season With Pianist Angela Hewitt

Shriver Hall Concert Series (SHCS) — Baltimore's premier presenter of chamber music ensembles and solo recitalists — opens its 2023-24 season with a performance by British-Canadian pianist Angela Hewitt on Sunday, October 15, 2023 at 5:30pm. The award-winning musician returns to Shriver Hall to perform Bach's famed Goldberg Variations, the composer's crowning achievement for the keyboard, and a masterpiece of deep ambition and dazzling creativity.

The Goldberg Variations, BWV 988, is an iconic musical composition for the keyboard by composer Johann Sebastian Bach, that consists of an aria and a set of 30 variations. The work was published in 1741 and is named after Johann Gottlieb Goldberg, who is believed to be the first performer of the work.

Angela Hewitt shares, “It will be a huge pleasure for me to return to Baltimore and to Shriver Hall to play the work that I most enjoy playing in public: Bach's monumental Goldberg Variations. Listening to that work in its entirety can be akin to a spiritual experience, and it gives us, at least momentarily, that sense of completeness which we seek. I remember with great fondness my previous recitals at Shriver Hall over many years and look forward to seeing friends and fans, old and new, once more for what I'm sure will be a memorable afternoon. It will also be great to perform on a Fazioli concert grand piano, brought to Baltimore from New York for the occasion.”

Having been hailed by The Guardian as “the preeminent Bach pianist of our time”, Angela Hewitt is renowned for her landmark recordings of his work. Her interpretations have been praised for the “contrasts, clarity, and warmth she brings to his intellectual marvels” (The Times, London). She last performed at Shriver Hall in 2014 to open the Shriver Hall Concert Series season that year with a performance of Bach's The Art of Fugue.

Shriver Hall Concert Series kicks off its 2023-24 free Discovery Series with a recital by pianist Yilun Xu on Saturday, November 4, 2023 at 3:00pm at the Baltimore Museum of Art, playing selections by Mozart, Janáček, Liszt, and Mussorgsky. As one of Peabody Conservatory's top talents, Yilun Xu – who is also the winner of the 2023 Yale Gordon Competition – has already performed at Beijing's Forbidden City Concert Hall, New York's Carnegie Hall, numerous international music festivals, and on NPR's prestigious From the Top program.

Yilun Xu remarks, “Unlocking the power of music through the keys of the piano, I strive to transport audiences on a journey of emotion and imagination. Each note is a brushstroke on the canvas of sound, creating a symphony of feelings that resonate long after the final chord fades. Join me in experiencing the magic of music, where the piano becomes a storyteller of the soul.”

Shriver Hall Concert Series' Discovery Series, an initiative created specifically for the community, is an annual series of concerts featuring extraordinary young artists emerging on the international scene, with most making their Baltimore debuts on the series. Recitals are presented in different, intimate venues and neighborhoods throughout the region, thereby offering greater access to different local communities.

The next mainstage concert in SHCS' 2023-24 season features the Grammy-winning Takács Quartet as they return to Shriver Hall on Sunday, November 19, 2023 at 5:30pm for the Baltimore premiere of a new work, flow – also a SHCS co-commission – by Nokuthula Ngwenyama. Also featured on the concert are works by Haydn and Beethoven.

Additional concerts in SHCS' 2023-24 Discovery Series include the debuts of flutist Brandon Patrick George and harpist Parker Ramsay for an unforgettable duo recital on Saturday, January 20, 2024 at 3:00pm, and the Isidore Quartet, winner of the 2022 Banff International String Quartet Competition, on Saturday, March 30, 2024 at 3:00pm.

Concert Information

Angela Hewitt, piano
Sunday, October 15, 2023 at 5:30pm
Shriver Hall | 3400 N. Charles Street | Baltimore, MD 21218
Tickets: $276 Subscription; $46 Single Ticket; $10 Students

J.S. BACH: Goldberg Variations, BWV 988

The Paul & Barbara Krieger Early Music Concert

Discovery Series: Yilun Xu, piano, winner of the 2023 Yale Gordon Competition
Saturday, November 4, 2023 at 3:00pm
Baltimore Museum of Art | 10 Art Museum Drive | Baltimore, MD 21218
Tickets: Free, Suggested Donation of $10

W.A. MOZART: Piano Sonata No. 2 in F major, K. 280
LEOŠ JANÁČEK: In the Mists
Franz Liszt: Rhapsodie espagnole, S. 254, R. 90
Modest Mussorgsky: Pictures at an Exhibition 

For almost 60 years, Shriver Hall Concert Series (SHCS) has been “Baltimore's finest importer of classical music talent” (The Baltimore Sun) and the area's premier presenter of chamber music ensembles and solo recitalists with a mission to craft performances and educational programs at the highest level of excellence. A 5-time recipient of Baltimore Magazine's distinction “Best Classical Music” in its annual “Best of Baltimore” issue, the coveted subscription series features many of the world's most renowned soloists and ensembles, presented in The Johns Hopkins University's Shriver Hall.

Founded in 1966 by Dr. Ernest Bueding, a pharmacologist at The Johns Hopkins University, and a group of similarly dedicated music enthusiasts, SHCS set out to make an important contribution to the vitality of an already vibrant city. When flutist Jean-Pierre Rampal walked onto the stage of Shriver Hall for the first concert, more than 1,100 people witnessed the launch of what is now recognized as a remarkable success story: Shriver Hall Concert Series. In the succeeding years SHCS has presented hundreds of acclaimed and emerging International Artists in classical chamber music and recitals and a legacy of important debuts and premieres. In addition, SHCS collaborates with local schools and subsidizes hundreds of student tickets each season.

The list of artists presented by SHCS is remarkable—Radu Lupu, Murray Perahia, Ewa Podlés, Maurizio Pollini, Jacqueline du Pré, Mstislav Rostropovich, Jordi Savall, András Schiff, Rudolf Serkin, Janos Starker, Daniil Trifonov, Lynn Harrell, Emmanuel Ax, Alban Berg Quartet, Guarneri Quartet, Kronos Quartet, Cleveland Quartet, and Quartetto Italiano, among many others. SHCS also has a history of championing important musicians early in their careers, including Richard Goode, Hilary Hahn, Hélène Grimaud, Dawn Upshaw, Lang Lang, and the Emerson String Quartet. Commissioned composers include Timo Andres, Sebastian Currier, James Lee III, Han Lash, Caroline Shaw, Carlos Simon, and Nina C. Young.

Designed specifically for the community, SHCS offers the Discovery Series, a series of free concerts presented in venues throughout the region focused on artists emerging on the national and international scene. Artists featured include Narek Hakhnazaryan, Colin Currie, Xavier Foley, Eric Lu, and the Dover Quartet. SHCS also offers the annual Spring Lecture Series, a series of free talks focused on annual topics related to the intersection of music and society, and a variety of student programs.

For more information, visit

One of the world's leading concert pianists, Angela Hewitt appears in recital and as soloist with major orchestras throughout Europe, the Americas, Australia, and Asia. Her interpretations of the music of J.S. Bach have established her as one of the composer's foremost interpreters of our time.

Born in 1958 into a musical family, Hewitt began her piano studies at age three, performed in public at four, and a year later won her first scholarship. From 1963 to 1973 she studied at Toronto's Royal Conservatory of Music with Earle Moss and Myrtle Guerrero, after which she completed her Bachelor of Music in Performance at the University of Ottawa in the class of French pianist Jean-Paul Sévilla, graduating at the age of 18. She was a prizewinner in numerous piano competitions in Europe, Canada, and the U.S., but it was her triumph in the 1985 Toronto International Bach Piano Competition, held in memory of Glenn Gould, that truly launched her international career.

Hewitt's award-winning cycle for Hyperion Records of all the major keyboard works of Bach has been described as “one of the record glories of our age” (The Sunday Times). Begun in 1994, it culminated with her much-awaited recording of Bach's Art of Fugue in 2014. Her extensive discography also includes solo recordings of the complete Beethoven Sonatas (she is one of very few women ever to record the complete cycle), Scarlatti, Handel, Couperin, Rameau, Haydn, Chopin, Schumann, Liszt, Fauré, Debussy, Chabrier, Ravel, Granados and Messiaen. She has won four Juno Awards, including one for her album of Mozart Concertos with Canada's National Arts Centre Orchestra.

In 2020 she was awarded two prestigious prizes: the City of Leipzig Bach Medal (being the first woman in its 17-year history to receive the award), and the Wigmore Hall Gold Medal in recognition of some 80 performances over the past 35 years in London's most prestigious chamber music venue.

In 2022 Hewitt was Chairman of the Jury of the prestigious International Bach Competition in Leipzig (piano category). The 2022-23 season sees her performing with orchestras in Finland, Denmark, Montreal, Ottawa, Victoria BC, Prague, Germany, and the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra in New York. Recitals take her to, among others, Barcelona, San Francisco, Seattle, Vienna, Amsterdam, Cambridge, Leipzig, and the famous La Fenice Opera House in Venice. She is also an artist-in-residence at London's Wigmore Hall.

In 2006 Hewitt was awarded an OBE from Queen Elizabeth II in her 80th birthday honors. A frequent guest on BBC Radio, she was invited to be the sole live performer in the two hours of classical music broadcast on BBC Radio 3 immediately following the funeral and committal of Queen Elizabeth II on September 19, 2022. In 2015, Hewitt was promoted to a Companion of the Order of Canada—her country's highest honor. She is a member of the Royal Society of Canada, has seven honorary doctorates, and is a Visiting Fellow of Peterhouse College, Cambridge. Her website is

An avid performer across China, the U.S., and Europe, pianist Yilun Xu has played in such prestigious venues as the Forbidden City Concert Hall, Carnegie Hall, Merkin Concert Hall of Kaufman Center, and Harris Concert Hall in Aspen. Selected as a Jack Kent Cooke Young Artist by NPR's From the Top, a national program showcasing America's best young classical musicians, Yilun continues to receive recognition for her compelling artistry. She has won numerous competitions in China and abroad, including first prizes in the Chappaqua Orchestra Concerto Competition and the Yale Gordon Competition.

Beyond her concert career, Xu has been featured in major music festivals, notably BIMFA On the Road International Music Festival & Academy in Shanghai Conservatory of Music, University of Florida International Piano Festival, Amalfi Coast Music & Arts Festival in Italy, Gijon International Piano Festival, and Aspen Music Festival.

Xu began to study piano when she was four years old. At age ten, she was accepted into the elementary school affiliated with the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, followed by the middle school division. She then moved to the U.S. in 2012 to enroll in The Juilliard School's Pre-College program under the tutelage of professor Yoheved Kaplinsky. Xu subsequently earned her bachelor's degree from the Columbia-Juilliard Exchange Program, merging her Juilliard music concentration with a comprehensive Columbia humanities education, and completed her master's degree under both Kaplinsky and Hung Kuan Chen. Currently, Xu is pursuing her doctoral degree at the Peabody Institute of the John Hopkins University with Yong Hi Moon.

Beyond music, Xu engages her scholarly interests through diverse coursework. She also serves her surrounding communities with her active dedication to student organizations. As the President of the Juilliard Chinese Student & Scholars Association from 2018 to 2022, her leadership proved her an ideal interdisciplinary ambassador for her colleagues as well as her own cultural roots. She encouraged awareness and appreciation for various aspects of Chinese culture to her school communities through her advocacy for Chinese orchestral music, and collaborated to organize gala concerts through partnerships with the Ivy League and other schools.

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