Key Pianists Returns To Weill Recital Hall At Carnegie Hall

By: Jul. 23, 2019
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Key Pianists Returns To Weill Recital Hall At Carnegie Hall

The imaginative and increasingly important Key Pianists concert series, founded by pianist Terry Eder in 2015, embarks on its fifth season with a recital by James Dick, whom American Record Guide lauded for his "patrician civility and lucid, beautiful sonority", on Thursday evening, October 10, 2019, at 7:30 pm at Carnegie Hall's Weill Recital Hall. His program will include Schumann's Carnaval, Op. 9, Haydn's Piano Sonata in B Minor, and Beethoven's Bagatelles Op. 126, as well as modern American composer Dan Welcher's The Birth of Shiva, for solo piano. On Wednesday evening, March 11, 2020, at 7:30 pm, pianist Ann Schein-cited by Tim Smith of The Baltimore Sun as playing with "a disarming combination of tonal fire power and electric phrasing" (October 11, 2011)-will return to the Series for an all-Chopin program, commemorating the 40th anniversary of her series of recitals in Alice Tully Hall of all the solo Chopin repertoire. To close out the season, pianist Jonathan Plowright, noted for "world-class [playing]; understated virtuosity at its best" (BBC Music Magazine), will perform Liszt's Consolations, Brahms' Sonata in F Minor, Josef Suk's Pisen Laski, and two works by Paderewski on Thursday evening, June 4, 2020, at 7:30 pm.

"This series is all about giving voice to pianists who have something unique to tell us, but are not always given a chance to be heard in the crowded New York concert scene," says founder, artistic and executive director Terry Eder.

In Season Two, Eric Simpson, writing for the New York Classical Review, described Ann Schein's rendition of Chopin's Sonata No. 3 in B Minor: "There was almost a Beethovenian confidence in Schein's approach to the music, as she combined a firm attack with splendid, singing melody. [...] In the trio she made the instrument glow. The Largo showed a strong affinity for the quiet intensity of Chopinian bliss, sublime and rolling" (6 Oct 2016).

Tickets will be available for purchase in person at the Carnegie Hall Box Office at 57th Street and Seventh Avenue, by phone through CarnegieCharge at 212-247-7800, and online at

More about the artists for the 2019-20 season follows:

James Dick, Thursday evening, October 10, 2019, at 7:30 pm

Tickets are $35. Student and senior discounts are available at the box office.

Haydn: Sonata in B Minor, Hob.XVI:32
Beethoven: Bagatelles, Op. 126
Dan Welcher: The Birth of Shiva - Fantasy for Solo Piano
Schumann: Carnaval, Op. 9

Recognized as one of the truly important pianists of his generation, internationally renowned concert pianist and Steinway artist James Dick brings keyboard sonorities of captivation, opulence, and brilliance to performances that radiate intellectual insight and emotional authenticity.

Raised in Hutchinson Kansas, his talent moved him from the farm to the University of Texas Music Building and out to the world's great concert halls. He received a scholarship to the University of Texas in Austin, studying with Dalies Frantz. Later, he was a Fulbright Scholar and studied with Sir Clifford Curzon in England. Mr. Dick's early triumphs as a major prizewinner in the Tchaikovsky, Busoni and Leventritt International Competitions were a mere prelude to an eminent career highlighted by acclaimed recitals and concerto performances in the world's premier concert halls, including New York's Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Town Hall, and 92nd Street "Y"; London's Queen Elizabeth Hall, Wigmore Hall, and Purcell Room; Le Theatre du Chatelet and Salle Gaveau in Paris; the Academy of Music in Philadelphia; the Kennedy Center and the National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C.; and Orchestra Hall in Chicago.

Mr. Dick has performed with the Chicago Symphony, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the National Symphony, and many major orchestras, with such conductors as Ormandy, Barbirolli, Levin, Maazel, Kondrashin, Spano, Oue, Sanderling, Hogwood, de Preist, and Verrot. In chamber music, he has been guest soloist with the Cleveland, Tokyo, Parisii, Ravel, Debussy, and Cassatt quartets, and the Dorian and Moragues wind quintets, concertizing as well with Yo-Yo Ma, Regis Pasquier, Young Uck Kim, Raphael Hillyer, Rostislav Dubinsky, Martin Lovett, Andrew Marriner, Guy Deplus, and Carol Wincenc.

James Dick has received numerous honors and commendations, including the Texas Medal of Arts, the Chevalier des Arts et Lettres from the French Ministry of Culture, and Honorary Associate of London's Royal Academy of Music.

He is a fervent supporter of new music, having commissioned Benjamin Lees, Dan Welcher, Malcolm Hawkins, and Chinary Ung to write, respectively, "Etudes," "Shiva's Drum," "Rasmandala," and "Rising Light" for piano and orchestra. In February 1998, James Dick premiered "Flight of Passage: From Silent Sun to Starry Night" by Claude Baker. This piece is inspired by poems by Walt Whitman. It was performed in New York (Alice Tully Hall), Paris (Salle Gaveau) and London (Purcell Room).

In addition to his schedule as a world-renowned guest artist, James Dick in 1971 established the Round Top Festival Institute in Round Top, Texas to nurture and incubate aspiring young musicians. The institute (today operated under The James Dick Foundation for the Performing Arts) has grown from a handful of gifted young pianists in rented space on the town square of Round Top to a 210-acre European-styled campus where distinguished faculty each year teach nearly 100 young artists and the Festival Institute provides year-round education and performance programs for audiences.

Today James Dick is well-known to music lovers as a man of great talent, vision, and class.

Ann Schein, Wednesday evening, March 11, 2020, at 7:30 pm

Tickets are $35. Student and senior discounts are available at the box office.

Chopin: Polonaise-Fantasie, Op. 61
Chopin: Nocturne in E Flat Major, Op. 55, No. 2
Chopin: Ballade No. 4 in F Minor
Chopin: Sonata No. 2 in B Flat Minor, Op. 35
Chopin: Preludes, Op. 28

About Ann Schein, The Washington Post has written, "Thank heaven for Ann Schein...what a relief it is to hear a pianist who, with no muss or fuss, simply reaches right into the heart of whatever she is playing - and creates music so powerful you cannot tear yourself away" (May 3, 2006). From her first recordings with Kapp Records, and her highly acclaimed Carnegie Hall recital debut as an artist on the Sol Hurok roster, Ann Schein's career has earned her praise in major American and European cities and in more than 50 countries around the world. Since her debut in Mexico City in 1957 when she performed both the Rachmaninoff Third Concerto and the Tchaikovsky B-flat Concerto, she has performed thousands of concerts on every continent.

Ms. Schein has performed with conductors including George Szell, James Levine, Seiji Ozawa, James dePreist, David Zinman, Stanislaw Skrowacewski, and Sir Colin Davis, and with major orchestras including the New York Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Baltimore Symphony, Washington National Symphony, London Philharmonic, London Symphony, and the BBC Symphony Orchestra. Over her many years performing in London, she appeared repeatedly in the Promenade Concerts in Albert Hall, including several Last Nights, when favorite soloists are invited to perform. In 1963 she was invited to perform at the White House during the Kennedy administration. Famed critic, Paul Hume, wrote in The Washington Post, "She drew the loveliest sound from the White House piano I have heard."

In the 1980-81 season, Ann Schein extended the legacy of her teachers, Mieczyslaw Munz, Arthur Rubinstein, and Dame Myra Hess performing 6 concerts of the major Chopin repertoire in Lincoln Center's Alice Tully Hall throughout an entire season to outstanding reviews and sold-out houses, the first Chopin cycle presented in New York in 35 years.

Ann Schein has received many distinguished honors for her Chopin performances, beginning with her first recordings in 1958 for Kapp Records. In a special survey of outstanding Chopin recorded performances during the bicentennial of Chopin's birth in 2010, entitled "A Century of Romantic Music," Gregor Benko and Ward Marston cited her performances of Chopin stating in her biography, "Ann Schein was trained in her native United States, where she studied with both Mieczyslaw Munz and Arthur Rubinstein. Her first recordings, made when she was 18 and 19, established her as one of the premiere Chopin pianists of our time."

Recent recordings include an album of all-Schumann for Ivory Classics and an all-Chopin recording of the Opus 28 Preludes and the B Minor Sonata, Opus 58 for MSR Classics. An American album, also for MSR Classics, includes the 1945-46 Elliott Carter Piano Sonata and the Piano Variations of Aaron Copland, as well as a work written for her by double bass and guitar artist, Grammy Award winner and jazz great, John Patitucci, entitled "Lakes." His nephew, J.P. Redmond, a rising composer, has written a piano sonata dedicated to her named "Northeastern Sonata."

Ms. Schein served on the piano faculty of the Peabody Conservatory from 1980-2001, and since 1984 she has been an Artist-Faculty member of the Aspen Music Festival and School. During the 2008-09 season she served as a Visiting Faculty member at Indiana University. From 2007-10 she was on the jury of the Irving S. Gilmore Keyboard Festival, culminating in the prize going to Kirill Gerstein as the winner of the 2010 Gilmore Artist Award. In December of 2012 Peabody Conservatory honored her with a Distinguished Alumni Award. She was invited to serve as Visiting Professor at the Eastman School of Music for the 2016-2017 season and performed and taught at the Bowdoin Music Festival and the Meadowmount School of Music in the summer. She was invited to join the piano faculty at the Mannes School of Music in 2017. In November, 2018, she was honored with a Lifetime Achievement in the Performing Arts by the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington, D.C.

A book written by the music critic for The Washington Post, author and musicologist, Cecelia Hopkins Porter, entitled, "Five Lives in Music: Women Performers, Composers and Impresarios from the Baroque to the Present" features Ann Schein as the 20th Century artist.

In May 2016, she performed the 3rd Rachmaninoff Concerto with the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra, the most recent of over 100 performances of this revered work throughout her career.

Jonathan Plowright, Thursday evening, June 4, 2020 at 7:30 pm

Tickets are $35. Student and senior discounts are available at the box office.

Paderewski: Humoresques de Concert, Op. 14 Nos. 1, 2, and 3
Liszt: Consolations
Josef Suk: Pisen Laski
Paderewski: Theme and Variations, Op. 16 No 3
Brahms: Piano Sonata in F Minor, Op. 3 No. 5

Hailed by Gramophone Magazine as "one of the finest living pianists," Jonathan Plowright has become a well-known and highly respected advocate of neglected Polish Romantic piano repertoire, bringing the works of Sigismund Stojowski and Ignacy Jan Paderewski back into the public consciousness through his high-quality recordings and performances.

Mr. Plowright has appeared as concerto soloist with major orchestras, including the London Philharmonic, BBC Scottish Symphony, the Hallé, the Royal Philharmonic, BBC Concert Orchestra, English Chamber Orchestra, Odessa Philharmonic, the Warsaw Philharmonic, and the Polish Radio and Polish National Symphony Orchestras, among others. He has worked with notable conductors such as Martyn Brabbins, Paul Daniel, Sir Neville Marriner, Gérard Korsten, Christoph Koenig, Barry Wordsworth, Lukasz Borowicz, and Michal Dworzynski. Recital performances include engagements at the Sydney Opera House, Royal Albert Hall, Wigmore Hall, Warsaw Opera House, Polish Music Center at the University of Southern California, Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, and more.

Career highlights include Mr. Plowright's 'Brahms Plus' Artistic Series at the Wigmore Hall spanning the 2018-20 seasons, a recital as part of the "100 for 100" concerts in Poland to commemorate 100 years of Polish independence, and a 2001 recital in Warsaw for the Polish Parliament's "Year of Paderewski" celebrations.

Also highly respected as a chamber musician, Mr. Plowright regularly collaborates with other musicians, appearing at chamber festivals around the world. Amongst those he has performed with are fellow pianists Piers Lane, Artur Pizarro, Frederick Chiu, Leslie Howard, and Kathy Stott, instrumentalists such as Raphael Wallfisch, Leonid Gorokov, the Scottish Ensemble, the Brodsky, Coull, Szymanowski and Silesian (?l?ski) Quartets, among many others.

Mr. Plowright has recorded fourteen critically acclaimed CDs on the Hyperion label. His most recent recording, a collection of pieces by Josef Suk, was named an Editor's Choice by both Gramophone and Pianist Magazines, and received 5-star ratings from Pizzicato and Classical Source. Other notable Hyperion releases include renditions of concertos by Lodumir Rozycki and Constant Lambert; a recording of Paderewski's Piano Concerto with the Polish Sinfonia Iuventus and conductor Lukasz Borowicz was released on Warner Classics in 2017. On the Swedish label BIS Records, Mr. Plowright has recorded the complete Brahms solo piano repertoire.

Mr. Plowright is on the Keyboard Faculty of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, and is often invited to give masterclasses, consultation lessons and prize adjudications at competitions and international conservatoires. In 2013 he was made a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Music.