Intermusica at the Southbank Centre's 2018/19 classical season
The Southbank Centre launched its 2018/19 classical season on 30 January 2018, with Intermusica artists and performing throughout the year. Highlights include Marin Alsop continuing her relationship with the Southbank in concerts with the Orchestra of the Age of the Enlightenment and the London Philharmonic Orchestra, Nicholas Collon and the Aurora Orchestra continuing their residency, and performances from Leonidas Kavakos, John Wilson, Kian Soltani and George Li.
Another major highlight of the season is the International Chamber Music Series, which Intermusica co-promotes with the Southbank Centre. This year it opens with a concert from Jordi Savall and his Hesperion XXI and features a concert marking the centenary of author Muriel Spark from the Nash Ensemble, and performances from Leonidas Kavakos and Yuja Wang, the Jerusalem, Artemis and Belcea quartets, and performances of Stockhausen by Southbank Centre Artist in Residence Pierre-Laurent Aimard.
Nicholas Collon and the Aurora Orchestra continue as Associate Orchestra with three concerts in the new season. The first, on 16 September 2018, pairs a memorized performance of Beethoven Symphony No.5 with HK Gruber's Frankenstein!! in a concert conceived and directed by Jane Mitchell. Their second, on 20 January 2019, is titled Songs from the Road and features Mahler's Songs of a Wayfarer, arrangements of folk ballads and the world premiere of Du Yun Where we lost our shadows. Their final concert takes place on 5 June 2019 and features works by Beethoven, Thomas Adès, a Max Richter world premiere and Mozart's Symphony No.41.
Kirill Gerstein renews his partnership with Thomas Adès when he joins the composer and the London Philharmonic Orchestra on 26 September to perform Adès' concerto for piano and orchestra, In Seven Days.
Geoffrey Paterson returns to the London Sinfonietta on 13 October to conduct them in a performance of Pascal Dusapin Passion, a collaboration with Music Theatre Wales.
Patricia Bardon returns to the role of Baba the Turk in a performance of Stravinsky The Rake's Progress with Vladimir Jurowski and the London Philharmonic Orchestra on 3 November.
Lahav Shani and Francesco Piemontesi join forces for a concert of Brahms and Beethoven with the Philharmonia Orchestra on 4 November. Shani conducts Weber Oberon Overture, Brahms Symphony No.1 and Beethoven Piano Concerto No.5 'Emperor', with himself as piano soloist.
Marin Alsop makes her first visit of the season on 11 November, conducting the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment in a performance of Brahms Ein deutsches Requiem. She then returns on 16 January to conduct the London Philharmonic Orchestra in a contemporary programme with Colin Currie giving the world premiere of Helen Grime's Percussion Concerto.
John Wilson returns to the Philharmonia Orchestra on 15 November for a concert of Gershwin and Walton. He is joined by Louis Schwizgebel, who performs Gershwin Piano Concerto. Wilson then brings his John Wilson Orchestra to the Southbank Centre on 15 December, leading them in a characteristic programme of music from Hollywood and Broadway. He returns on 18 April to lead the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment in a special performance of Gilbert & Sullivan Trial by Jury.
Mary Bevan joins the Philharmonia Orchestra and conductor Brian Wright for a seasonal performance of Handel's Messiah on 16 December.
Leonidas Kavakos appears at the Southbank Centre's International Chamber Music Series on 18 January alongside Yuja Wang, performing a recital of Mozart, Prokofiev, Bartók and Strauss.
Martyn Brabbins joins the Philharmonia Orchestra on 20 January 2019 to conduct an English programme of Elgar, Vaughan Williams, Britten and the London premiere of Geoffrey Gordon's Prometheus, a concerto for bass clarinet and orchestra.
Jacques Imbrailo joins the Mozartists and conductor Ian Page on 29 January for the next concert in their Mozart 250 series, which is themed around the year 1769. Imbrailo sings arias by Gluck, Haydn, Arne, Gréty and Paisiello.
Susan Bickley returns to the Southbank Centre to sing Beethoven Symphony No.9 alongside the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and conductor Oliver Gooch on 16 March.
Kian Soltani returns on 23 March after his acclaimed debut at Southbank Centre with the West–Eastern Divan Orchestra. This time he joins Edward Gardner and the London Philharmonic Orchestra to play Elgar Cello Concerto.
George Li joins Vasily Petrenko and the London Philharmonic Orchestra on 27 March to perform Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No.1, part of a programme that also features Khachaturian Adagio of Spartacus and Phrygia and Walton Symphony No.1.
Following a critically acclaimed London conducting debut with the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain in 2017, Carlos Miguel Prieto returns to lead the young musicians in a concert on 12 April. Prieto conducts an exciting programme of Revueltas, Carlos Chávez and Copland.
Francesco Piemontesi returns to the International Piano Series on 2 May, performing a solo recital of works by Bach, Debussy and Rachmaninov.
Martin James Bartlett joins the Philharmonia Orchestra on 7 May to perform Ravel Piano Concerto in G, part of a programme that also features the world premiere of Cecilia McDowall Da Vinci Requiem.
George Li performs Prokofiev with the New Jersey Symphony
George Li begins the new year in New Jersey, performing three concerts around the state with the New Jersey Symphony and conductor Xian Zhang. Performing Prokofiev Piano Concerto No.3, George and the orchestra appear in Englewood on 11 January and then continue on to Newark on 13 January and New Brunswick on 14 January.
Li is developing into a noted interpreter of Prokofiev, giving a critically acclaimed performance of his Third Piano Concerto at the Philharmonie in Berlin in 2016:
"The Boston-born George Li went at the piano like a man possessed in the Philharmonie during Prokofiev Piano Concerto No. 3. Naturally, the silver medallist’s extremely flexible virtuosity also incorporates quiet, transparently shimmering notes. The whole thing is certainly vibrant and thrilling."
Der Tagesspiegel, October 2016
Li remains in the United States for his next concerts, appearing with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and Leonard Slatkin in February.
Verbier Festival announces 2018 programme
Verbier Festival has announced its programme for 2018, with a typically star-studded line-up featuring a host of Intermusica artists. Highlights include a gala concert celebrating 25 years of Verbier, a solo recital from Daniil Trifonov and a Mischa Maisky ‘Carte Blanche’ concert.
George Li joins Valery Gergiev and the Verbier Festival Orchestra for the opening concert of the festival on 19 July at 19:00 at the Salle des Combins.
Sergei Babayan performs with Yuri Bashmet on 20 July at 11:00 at the Église with a programme of J.S. Bach Schnittke and Shostakovich.
On 21 July, Leonidas Kavakos performs his first concert of the festival with Diemut Poppen and Gautier Capuçon at 20:00 at the Église.
Kristóf Baráti and Sergei Babayan join friends for a recital on 22 July at 20:00 at the Église.
On 23 July, Mischa Maisky performs a ‘Carte Blanche’ concert with various musical friends, including son Sascha Maisky and daughter Lily Maisky at 20:00 at the Église.
Kavakos joins the Verbier Festival Orchestra, Christopher Eschenbach and Ying Fang for a programme of Mahler and Berg on 23 July at 19:00 at the Salle des Combins.
Baráti performs with Lucas Debargue at 11:00 at the Église, with music by Debussy, Franck and Brahms.
On 25 July, a gala concert celebrates Verbier Festival’s silver jubilee at the Salle des Combins at 18:00. Performers include Babayan, Kavakos, Renaud Capuçon, Maisky and Daniil Trifonov, among many other stars of the classical world.
Baráti performs another recital at the Église on 27 July at 17:00, with Daniel Lozakovich, Eduard Wulfson and Zarina Shimanskaya.
Capuçon and Kavakos join forces with Yuja Wang and others on 27 July at the Église at 20:00 for a programme of Mozart and Tchaikovsky.
Kian Soltani and Trifonov perform at the Église at 11:00 on 29 July for music by Robert and Clara Schumann, and a piece by Trifonov himself.
Richard Goode returns to the festival at 15:00 on 29 July to perform Mozart with the Verbier Festival Junior Orchestra and conductor Alain Altinoglu.
Capuçon joins various fellow musicians for an all-Brahms programme on 29 July at 20:00 at the Église.
Soltani joins a quartet on 20 July at 17:00 at the Église for a concert of Lucas Debargue (also one of the performers) and Brahms.
Babayan performs a solo recital on 31 July at 11:00 at the Église.
Kavakos joins another A-list line up for a programme of Prokofiev, Schoenberg, Fauré and Chausson on 31 July at 20:00 at the Église.
Trifonov performs a solo recital at 19:00 at the Salle des Combins the same day, 31 July, with a programme exploring Chopin.
Soltani joins Aaron Pilsan on 1 August at 11:00 at the Église for a duo recital.
Maisky performs with Iván Fischer and the Verbier Festival Orchestra on 2 August at 19:00 at the Salle des Combins, performing Dvořák’s Cello Concerto.
Visit the Verbier Festival website for the full list of concerts for 2018.
George Li debuts with the San Diego Symphony
George Li begins December in California, where he makes his debut with the San Diego Symphony Orchestra on 1 and 2 December 2017. Li joins the orchestra at its home at Jacobs Music Center and performs Chopin Piano Concerto No.1 under the baton of David Danzmayr.
Li performed the concerto with the Kansas City Symphony in January, a performance that was highly praised:
"Under Li’s touch, Chopin’s exuberant composition exploded throughout the hall. Li revealed immediately why he is a rising star, and a winner of international competitions. He plays with an animated style that fits the youthful Chopin’s work... Yet he revealed immediately..., his controlled, but expressive and delicate touch as he and the orchestra cast the spell of the contemplative movement, described by Chopin as a 'meditation in beautiful spring weather, but by moonlight.'"
Kansas City Metropolis
George Li makes his London concerto debut with the Philharmonia Orchestra at Royal Festival Hall
On 23 November, George Li makes his London concerto debut with the Philharmonia Orchestra at the Royal Festival Hall with conductor Long Yu. He plays Rachmaninov Piano Concerto No.2, and the previous night makes his debut with the Philharmonia at the Bedford Corn Exchange.
These are Li’s second performances with Long Yu this month, after a concert with the China Philharmonic Orchestra in Beijing at the beginning of November.
Li returns to London in March 2018 for a recital at the Southbank Centre’s International Piano Series at St John’s Smith Square.
George Li makes debut with Shanghai Symphony Orchestra in return to China
George Li begins the month with a return to China, where he makes his debut with the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra on 3 November. Li joins the orchestra and conductor Wen-pin Chien at Shanghai's Symphony Hall to perform Rachmaninov Piano Concerto No.2. He also performs the concerto in Beijing on 7 November, this time with the China Philharmonic Orchestra and Long Yu.
Following his trip to China, Li returns to the UK for his debut with the Philharmonia Orchestra, performing Rachmaninov Piano Concerto No2. once again under the baton of Long Yu. He joins the orchestra for concerts at the Bedford Corn Exchange and London's Royal Festival Hall on 22 and 23 November.
George Li: Live at the Mariinsky released on Warner Classics
George Li’s debut solo recording, Live at the Mariinsky, is released by Warner Classics on 6 October 2017. The album offers an enthralling programme of Haydn, Chopin, Rachmaninov and Liszt, recorded live at the Mariinsky Concert Hall in St Petersburg in October 2016. Click here to read an interview with Li about the recording for Presto Classical.
“Whimsical, somber, bravura, elated, and boldly rapturous, the piece brings forth a panoply of colors from Li, many of which prove mesmeric, especially his own improvisation on the Liszt declamations. Fingers and personality inundate the occasion, and I think we might take our hats off.”
Audiophile Audition, September 2017
George Li begins recital tour of North America & Europe
George Li embarks on a tour of North America and Europe this month, beginning with a recital at San Francisco's Davis Symphony Hall on 8 October 2017. The performance, presented by the San Francisco Symphony, comes just weeks after Li made his debut with the orchestra in their season-opening gala.
Following the performance in San Francisco, Li then gives recitals at the Liederhalle in Stuttgart on 14 October, the Chan Centre in Vancouver on 22 October and finally gives his debut recital at New York's Carnegie Hall on 27 October.
Li's programme draws on his debut album, Live at the Mariinsky, which is released this month on Warner Classics. During the tour, he performs works by Haydn, Beethoven, Rachmaninov and Liszt.
George Li performs at San Francisco Symphony's All SF season-opening concert
George Li joins the San Francisco Symphony and Michael Tilson Thomas for their annual All SF Concert at Davies Symphony Hall on 15 September 2017. Tickets to the All SF Concert are distributed to the city's most impactful community groups and non-profits, allowing the orchestra to celebrate their contribution to the life of San Francisco and its inhabitants. Li performs Rachmaninov Piano Concerto No.2, part of a programme that also includes Bernstein Overture to Candide and Symphonic Dances from West Side Story, as well as Ravel Bolero.
Li performed the same concerto for his recent debut with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, which the Sydney Morning Herald described as "absorbing listening":
"Li played Rachmaninoff's Piano Concert No. 2 in C minor, Opus 18 with overarching musical concentration that engendered clarity of shape and melodic lines of expressively calibrated nuance... each note was weighted with delicate intensity to build an arch of expansive emotional weight."
Li returns to San Francisco in October for a solo recital, also at Davies Symphony Hall.
George Li gives first concerts with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra
George Li makes his debut with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra in the first of three concerts on 31 August 2017. Performing under the baton of David Robertson, Li gives further performances at the Sydney Opera House on 1 and 2 September. Li joins the orchestra to perform Rachmaninov Piano Concerto No.2.
The concerts in Sydney are Li's second debut of the month, following his first performance with the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra on 17 August. Elsewhere, he performs in recital in Poland and South Korea.
George Li debuts with the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra
George Li travels to Norway this month for a performance of Gershwin Rhapsody in Blue with the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra on 17 August 2017. The concert, which marks Li's debut with the orchestra, takes place in the city's Palace Square under the baton of Wayne Marshall.
Last October Li performed Gershwin Variations on "I Got Rhythm" to great acclaim at the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra’s opening season concert at Walt Disney Hall under the baton of Gustavo Dudamel.
Elsewhere, Li ends the month with a second debut, this time with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra in three concerts on 31 August and 1 and 2 September at Sydney Opera House. He also gives recitals at the Duszniki Festival in Poland on 5 August and at Seoul Arts Center on 23 August with a programme of pieces by Chopin, Beethoven and Liszt.
George Li signs an exclusive, multi-disc contract with Warner Classics
George Li has signed an exclusive, multi-disc contract with Warner Classics. Li’s debut album “Live from the Mariinsky” releases internationally on 6 October 2017, featuring the works of Haydn, Chopin, Rachmaninov and Liszt.
The young American’s artistry captured the musical world’s attention at the 2015 Tchaikovsky Competition, one of the most formidable events of its kind. He describes it as being “like the musical Olympics”, but also found that “being there in Moscow was a sublime feeling”. His talent and dedication duly prevailed. As Pianist magazine has written: “His musicianship is informed by a fulsome emotional world, sensitivity to drama, directness of expression and distinctive beauty of tone that together conspire to give him a strong personal voice at the instrument.”
For his first recording with the label, George returned to Russia and recorded his debut album “Live from the Mariinsky”, releasing internationally on 6 October 2017 and featuring the works of Haydn, Chopin, Rachmaninov and Liszt.
Recent and upcoming highlights include his debuts with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, Sydney Symphony, Philharmonia, London Symphony Orchestra, Oslo Philharmonic, Hamburg Philharmonic, Orchestre National de Lyon, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Mälmo Symphony, Verbier Festival Orchestra, DSO Berlin, Seattle Symphony and Frankfurt Radio Symphony, with conductors including Gustavo Dudamel, Manfred Honeck, Michael Tilson Thomas, David Robertson, Giandrea Noseda, Leonard Slatkin, Ludovic Morlot, Robert Spano, James Gaffigan and Yuri Temirkanov. He frequently appears with Valery Gergiev, including performances at the Paris Philharmonie, Luxemburg Philharmonie, New York’s Brooklyn Academy of Music, Grafenegg Festival and the White Nights Festival.
George Li awarded the 2017 Arthur Waser Prize for outstanding soloists
George Li has been awarded the 2017 Arthur Waser Prize by the Arthur Waser Foundation and the Lucerne Symphony Orchestra. The prize consists of a monetary award of CHF 25,000 and a debut with the Lucerne Symphony Orchestra at the KKL Lucerne. The laureate concerts take place on 2 and 3 May 2018, when he performs Rachmaninov Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, Op.43 under the baton of Juanjo Mena.
The Arthur Waser Foundation was established in 1999 as a not-for-profit charitable trust and provides support for a wide range of social and cultural projects in Switzerland and beyond. The Arthur Waser Foundation and the Luzerner Sinfonieorchester have enjoyed a close relationship for many years based on their shared goals of searching for talent, providing sustained support for that talent, and nurturing existing potential.
George Li returns to the Verbier Festival
George Li returns to the Verbier Festival on 27 July 2017, giving three performances throughout the festival. On 27 July, Li joins Pablo Ferrandez (cello) and Daniel Lozakovich (violin) at the Église de Verbier for a recital featuring a programme of Shostakovich Cello Sonata in D minor, Op.40, C. Franck Violin Sonata in A major and Mendelssohn Piano Trio No.1 in D minor, Op.49.
Li's second performance at Verbier comes with fellow Intermusica artist Joshua Weilerstein, who conducts Li and the Verbier Festival Chamber Orchestra in a performance of Liszt Piano Concerto No.1.
He ends his week in Verbier with his solo recital debut on July 31, when he performs a programme of works by Beethoven and Liszt.
George Li & Ben Gernon debut with the Houston Symphony Orchestra
George Li and Ben Gernon both end the month in Houston where they make their debuts with the Houston Symphony Orchestra on 30 June 2017. Appearing at Houston's Miller Outdoor Theatre, Gernon conducts the orchestra in a programme of Mendelssohn Symphony No.1 and Glinka Overture to Ruslan and Lyudmila, with Li joining them to perform Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No.1.
Li's recent performances were met with high critical acclaim in the press:
"Under Li’s touch, Chopin’s exuberant composition exploded throughout the hall. Li revealed immediately why he is a rising star and a winner of international competitions. He plays with an animated style that fits the youthful Chopin’s work... Yet he revealed immediately..., his controlled, but expressive and delicate touch as he and the orchestra cast the spell of the contemplative movement, described by Chopin as a 'meditation in beautiful spring weather, but by moonlight.'"
Kansas City Metropolis, February 2017
Gernon recently made his debut at Oper Stuttgart, conducting Le nozze di Figaro to critical praise:
"Gernon lets Mozart’s music be a classic in the best sense of the word. Its attraction comes through quite naturally in a fresh and balanced interpretation like this one."
Der Neue Merkur, April 2017
George Li makes his debut with the Seattle Symphony
George Li makes his debut with the Seattle Symphony Orchestra on 27 and 29 April 2017, giving two performances of Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No.1 at Benaroya Hall under the baton of Christoph König.
Li has a burgeoning reputation as an interpreter of Russian repertoire, giving a "vibrant and thrilling" performance of Prokofiev Piano Concerto No.3 for his debut with the Deutsches-Symphonie Orchester Berlin earlier in the season:
"The Boston-born George Li went at the piano like a man possessed in the Philharmonie during Prokofiev Piano Concerto No. 3. Naturally, the silver medallist’s extremely flexible virtuosity also incorporates quiet, transparently shimmering notes. The whole thing is certainly vibrant and thrilling."
Der Tagesspiel, October 2016
George Li makes his debut with the Hamburg Philharmonic Orchestra at the Elbphilharmonie
George Li makes his debut with the Hamburg Philharmonic Orchestra this month, joining the orchestra for two sold-out concerts at the newly opened Elbphilharmonie on 12 and 13 March 2017. Li performs Rachmaninov Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini.
The concerts in Hamburg are just the latest in a string of major debuts that has included concerts with the LA Philharmonic, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Orchestre National de Lyon and hr-Sinfonieorchester, as well as Li's Barcelona debut and his first performance at the Philharmonie de Paris, both with the Mariinsky Orchestra.
Li makes two further debuts in the coming months: with the Seattle Symphony Orchestra in April, and with the Malmö Symphony Orchestra in May.
Intermusica artists at the 2017 Verbier Festival
Intermusica artists appear throughout the 2017 Verbier Festival, with all performances streamed live by Medici.tv. See all the performance times, dates and venues below:
Also performing at the Église on 22 July is the Pavel Haas Quartet. At 8pm they are joined by pianist Barry Douglas for a performance of Brahms Piano Quintet in F minor and Beethoven String Quartet No.
Richard Goode, Renaud Capuçon and Edgar Moreau appear at the Église at 8pm on 24 July to perform Brahms Piano Trio No.2. In the second half of the recital, Capuçon and Moreau are joined by Lahav Shani, Maxim Rysanov and Leigh Mesh for a performance of Schubert Piano Quintet in A major 'The Trout'.
The Pavel Haas Quartet makes its second appearance at the festival on 25 July, performing in recital at the Église at 11am. The quartet presents a programme of quartets by Martinů and Smetana as well as Dvořák String Quintet No.3, for which they are joined by the quartet's friend and former colleague Pavel Nikl.
Lahav Shani then conducts the Verbier Festival Chamber Orchestra at the Salle des Combins at 7pm on 25 July, leading a programme of Mozart Il nozze di Figaro Overture, Bruch Violin Concerto No.1 with soloist Daniel Lozakovich and Schubert Symphony No.9.
The Choir of King's College, Cambridge, makes its festival debut this year, performing at the Église at 8pm on 26 July. They give a concert of works by Duruflé, Tomkins, Byrd and Poulence among others.
Joshua Weilerstein conducts the Junior Orchestra at 4pm at the Salle des Combins on 27 July. Weilerstein conducts a programme of Fauré Elegie for Cello and Orchestra with Edgar Moreau followed by Bruch Kol Nidrei and Dvořák Symphony No.6.
Richard Goode makes his second appearance at the festival, performing a programme of Mozart, Janáček, Debussy and Beethoven at the Église at 11am on 29 July.
Joshua Weilerstein is joined by George Li at the Salle des Combins at 4pm on 29 July for a concert with the Verbier Festival Junior Orchestra. Li performs Liszt Piano Concerto No.1, with Weilerstein then conducting Dvořák Symphony No.6.
Kirill Gerstein and Sergei Babayan join Yuja Wang and the Verber Festival Chamber Orchestra at the Salle des Combins at 7pm on 29 July for a performance of Bach concertos under the direction of Roberto Gonzáles-Monjas.
At 11am on 30 July, Kirill Gerstein is joined by Truls Mørk to perform sonatas by Brahms, Janáček and Prokofiev at the Église.
In the evening of 30 July, Antoine Tamestit and Mischa Maisky appear at the Salle des Combins alongside Dmitry Sitkovetsky, Roman Simović and Evgeny Kissin. They perform a programme of Mozart String Quartet No.1, Fauré String Quartet No.1 and Dvořák Piano Quintet No.2.
On 31 July, George Li performs a solo recital of Beethoven and Liszt at 11am at the Église.
Joshua Weilerstein joins Martin Frost and the Verbier Festival Orchestra at the Salle des Combins on 31 July at 7pm. Weilerstein conducts a programme of Copland, Lutoslawski, Shaw and Prokofiev.
On 1 August at 11am, Tamestit joins Roberto González-Monjas, Alexander Sitkovetsky, Pablo Ferrández, Lukas Geniušas & Yuja Wang to perform works by Schubert, Beethoven & Brahms.
Tamestit and Maisky reunite at the Église at 8pm on 3 August, this time performing Brahms Piano Quartet No.3 with Nikolai Lugansky. Tamestit also performs Brahms Sonata for Viola and Piano with Lugansky, while Maisky and Lugansky play the composer's Sonata for Violin and Piano No.1 in an arrangement for cello and piano by Paul Klengel.
On 5 August at the Salle des Combins at 7pm, James Ehnes, Antoine Tamestit, Mischa Maisky, Pamela Frank, Roman Simović, Pablo Ferrández, Martin Fröst, Nikolai Lugansky, Yuja Wang, the Verbier Festival Chamber Orchestra and Antonio Pappano will join forces for an evening celebrating friendship and musical excellence.
George Li makes his debut with the Orchestre National de Lyon & hr-Sinfonieorchster
George Li joins the Orchestre National de Lyon and conductor Leonard Slatkin on 19 February 2017 for a performance at New Jersey Performing Arts Centre in Newark, the first of two debuts this month. Li joins the orchestra to perform Liszt Piano Concerto No.1. Li's recent performances of have received high acclaim by the press:
"George Li has energy to spare: the American pianist maintains his presence with even the softest chord, the softest passing note. His rhythmic concentration is in peak condition... As lively and refreshing as spring water, the many scales of the First Concerto sounded like so many slides: here is a musician who enriches more than he holds back, with expressiveness that is breathtaking in its clarity."
Bachtrack, November 2016
Li then travels to Germany for his second debut of the month, again performing Liszt Piano Concerto No.1, when he joins the hr-Sinfonieorchester and Tito Muñoz at the Sendessaal, Frankfurt, on 23 and 24 February.
Intermusica artists star in the Southbank Centre's 2017/18 Classical Season
Intermusica artists star in the Southbank Centre's 2017/18 classical season, which was announced on 26 January 2017.
Highlights of the new season include Marin Alsop conducting Bernstein Mass with the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain and Kian Soltani performing in memory of Jacqueline du Pré with Daniel Barenboim and the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra. The Intermusica co-promoted International Chamber Music Series features James Ehnes leading Messiaen Quartet for the End of Time, Danielle de Niese performing with the Navarra String Quartet and Colin Currie marking the re-opening of the Queen Elizabeth Hall with a world premiere of a new work by Harrison Birtwistle. Boris Giltburg and George Li give solo recitals as part of the long-running International Piano Series, Nicholas Collon conducts Aurora Orchestra in the finale of Pierre-Laurent Aimard's Ligeti in Wonderland festival, and Kian Soltani makes a second appearance alongside Brett Dean for a performance of Schubert Trout Quintet.
28 October 2017
Kian Soltani & West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, cond. Daniel Barenboim / Strauss Don Quixote
14 November 2017
James Ehnes, Steven Osborne, Alban Gerhardt & Jean Johnson / Messiaen Quartet for the End of Time
28 February 2018
Boris Giltburg / Brahms, Shostakovich & Rachmaninov
20 March 2018
George Li / Beethoven, Rachmaninov, Chopin & Liszt
6 & 7 April 2018
Marin Alsop & the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain / Bernstein Mass
19 April 2018
Colin Currie & Nicholas Hodges / Morton Feldman, Stockhausen & Harrison Birtwistle
27 April 2018
Danielle de Niese & Navarra String Quartet / Albert Roussel, Schubert & Ernest Chausson
13 May 2018
Nicholas Collon & Aurora Orchestra / Ligeti
For more information and to book tickets, visit the Southbank Centre website.
George Li makes his debut in Barcelona with the Mariinsky Orchestra & Valery Gergiev
George Li travels to Spain this month to make his debut in Barcelona at the L'Auditori on 27 January 2017. Li performs Liszt Piano Concert No.1 alongside Valery Gergiev and the Mariinsky Orchestra. Li is a regular guest of the orchestra, performing around the world to critical acclaim:
"George Li has energy to spare: the American pianist maintains his presence with even the softest chord, the softest passing note. His rhythmic concentration is in peak condition... As lively and refreshing as spring water, the many scales of the First Concerto sounded like so many slides: here is a musician who enriches more than he holds back, with expressiveness that is breath taking in its clarity."
Bachtrack, November 2016
“A bracing, fearless account…Mr. Li’s playing combined youthful abandon with utter command."
New York Times, February 2016
George Li & Kian Soltani perform at the 8th Verbier Festival at Schloss Elmau
George Li and Kian Soltani travel to Bavaria to perform at the 8th Verbier Festival at Schloss Elmau from 27 November 2016, with both artists giving three performances at the festival.
On 27 November Li performs Beethoven Piano Concerto No.1 with the Verbier Festival Chamber Orchestra and conductor Christoph Koncz, and the following day he performs a solo recital of works by Haydn, Chopin and Prokofiev.
Soltani gives his first performance of the festival on 29 November with the Verbier Festival Chamber Orchestra and Gábor Takács-Nagy, and on 30 November Soltani joins Li and Ye-Eun Choi (violin), Timothy Ridout (viola) and Aaron Pilsan (piano) to perform Mendelssohn Piano Quintet No.2 in F minor. He gives a second chamber recital on 2 December, performing Schubert and Mendelssohn with Ye-Eun Choi and Frank Dupree.
George Li makes his debut at the Philharmonie de Paris with the Mariinsky Orchestra
George Li returns to France with the Mariinsky Orchestra and Valery Gergiev for his debut at the Philharmonie de Paris on 21 November 2016. Li joins the orchestra for a performance of Prokofiev Piano Concerto No.1, a piece of which he gave "a bracing, fearless account" (New York Times) with the orchestra in New York in February.
Li and the orchestra then perform the concerto together again for Li's second debut of the month, this time at the Luxembourg Philharmonie on 23 November. Li ends the month with a residency at Verbier Festival at Schloss Elmau, Bavaria.
George Li debuts with the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin
George Li travels to Germany this month to make his debut with the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin at the Philharmonie Berlin on 10 October 2016. Li joins the orchestra for a performance of Prokofiev Piano Concerto No.3 under the baton of Lorenzo Viotti.
The concert in Berlin is Li's second debut of the season, coming soon after his first concert with the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl, and also follows a triumphant debut at the Edinburgh International Festival in August:
"No piano recital ever more deserved five stars… he has just about the full package of abilities: masses of style, acres of expertise and technical virtuosity with dexterity almost beyond categorisation… I’ve seldom felt a crowd being so swept along by the momentum of an event; and they roared for more.”
"...there’s plenty to be amazed by, not least his glittering, galvanising, finger-breaking virtuosity, most clearly on show in the fiery Carmen transcription that formed his second, begged-for encore."
George Li makes his LA Philharmonic debut at Walt Disney Concert Hall Opening Gala
George Li performs at the Walt Disney Concert Hall on 27 September 2016 for his debut with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and Gustavo Dudamel. The concert marks the opening of the hall's 2016/17 season.
He performs Gershwin’s Variations on 'I got Rhythm' in a jazz-themed programme of music by Gershwin, Ellington, Porter and Bernstein.
George Li & Daniil Trifonov: Prokofiev Piano Concertos with Rotterdam Philharmonic at the Gergiev Festival
George Li and Daniil Trifonov perform Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto Nos 1 and 3 with Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra and Valery Gergiev at the Gergiev Festival across two concerts on 10 September 2016. The concerts see Prokofiev's five Piano Concertos performed in one day by a number of soloists.
Both Trifonov and Li are regular soloists with Gergiev; in February 2016, both joined him with the Mariinsky Orchestra in their 'Prokofiev Marathon' in New York. Li performed Piano Concerto No.1, the New York Times writing: “a bracing, fearless account…Mr. Li’s playing combined youthful abandon with utter command." Trifonov's performance of Concerto No.3 in New York was praised for its “delicacy and sparkling clarity”.
Intermusica at the Grafenegg Festival 2016
George Li, Valentina Naforniţa and Renaud Capuçon all perform at Grafenegg Festival this summer, while composers Brett Dean and HK Gruber join the jury of the festival’s composer workshop concert, and Martyn Brabbins supports the workshop participants.
On 4 September, George Li joins the Mariinsky Orchestra and Valery Gergiev as soloist in Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No.1. Later that day, Renaud Capuçon appears with Orchestre National de France and Christoph Eschenbach to perform Saint-Saëns Violin Concerto No.3.
Valentina Naforniţa sings Mozart concert arias with the Cologne Radio Orchestra and Jukka-Pekka Saraste on 8 September.
Brett Dean and HK Gruber return to the Festival to sit on the jury of its Ink Still Wet Composer-Conductor Workshop. With the support of the Tonkunstler Orchestra and Martyn Brabbins, contemporary composers will have their work showcased in the workshop’s closing concert on 5 September. Both Dean and Gruber have held the post of Composer-in-Residence at the festival in previous years.
Leonidas Kavakos, Daniil Trifonov, James Ehnes & George Li at Septembre Musical Montreux
Leonidas Kavakos, Daniil Trifonov, James Ehnes & George Li all perform at Montreux’s Septembre Musical in September.
Both Kavakos and Trifonov join the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and Artistic Director and Principal Conductor Charles Dutoit. Kavakos plays the Brahms Violin Concerto on 27 August, and Trifonov is soloist for Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No.2 the following evening, 28 August.
James Ehnes and George Li perform solo recitals. Ehnes performs Bach’s solo Sonatas and Partitas over two concerts on 29 August – his third and fourth performances of solo Bach in two days, after performing the programme at the Stresa Festival the day before.
On 1 September, George Li performs a programme of Haydn, Chopin, Rachmaninov and Liszt. The recital follows soon after his “sensational” (Herald) Edinburgh International Festival debut.
Septembre Musical takes place annually in Montreux and Vevey in Switzerland, featuring international orchestras and chamber music. It works in collaboration with the Verbier Festival Academy to highlight the next generation of artists.
Listen to George Li's Edinburgh International Festival debut
George Li made his debut at the Edinburgh International Festival debut on 10 August with a solo recital of Haydn, Chopin, Rachmaninov and Liszt at the Queen's Hall. The performance was broadcast on BBC Radio 3 live - you can listen again online on the BBC website. The broadcast will be available until 10 September.
The Herald wrote of the concert:
"[Li has] masses of style, acres of expertise and technical virtuosity with dexterity almost beyond categorisation... I've seldom felt a crows being so swept along by the momentum of an event, and they roared for more."
The full programme:
Haydn Piano Sonata in B minor
Chopin Piano Sonata No.2 in B flat minor
Rachmaninov Variations on a Theme of Corelli
Liszt Consolation No.3 in D flat major
Liszt Hungarian Rhapsody No.2
George Li is soloist in Saint-Saëns Piano Concerto No.2 & Joshua Weilerstein makes his debut at Verbier Festival
George Li joins Joshua Weilerstein, making his Verbier Festival debut, and the Verbier Festival Orchestra at the Salle des Combins at 7pm on 6 August 2016.
The concerto is part of a French programme that also includes Bizet Symphony in C major and Saint-Saëns Violin Concerto No.3 with soloist Joshua Bell.
The concert will be streamed live on Medici.tv.
Weilerstein also conducts Mozart Don Giovanni on 7 August with a cast of upcoming young singers from the Verbier Festival Academy.
George Li makes his Edinburgh International Festival debut
George Li gives his Edinburgh International Festival debut on 10 August.
He plays a programme of Haydn Piano Sonata in B minor, Chopin Piano Sonata No.2, Rachmaninov Variations on a Theme of Corelli, Liszt Consolation No.3 in D flat major and Liszt Hungarian Rhapsody No.2 at the Queen’s Hall.
The week before his debut at the festival, he performs a recital at the Schloss Elmau on 3 August, and is the soloist in Saint-Saëns’s Piano Concerto No.2 in G minor at Verbier Festival with the Verbier Festival Orchestra conducted by Joshua Weilerstein on 6 August.
George Li performs at the Ravinia & Lanaudiere Festivals
George Li continues his festival appearances this month with recitals at the Ravinia, Lanaudiere and International Keyboard Institute Festivals from 24 July 2016.
On 24 July, Li appears at the Ravinia Festival, performing a programme of works by Haydn, Chopin, Rachmaninov and Liszt at Bennett Gordon Hall. He then travels to Canada for the Lanaudiere Festival on 25 July, performing the same programme at the Église St-Antoine-de-Lavaltrie in Quebec. Li then finishes July at the International Keyboard Instute Festival in New York, performing in recital at the Kaye Playhouse on 27 July.
Li performs more solo recitals in August, appearing at Schloss Elmau, the Verbier Festival and Edinburgh International Festivals.
George Li: on tour with the Lucerne Symphony Orchestra in China
George Li joins the Lucerne Symphony Orchestra for two concerts in Shanghai on 28 June and Xi’an on 30 June. He plays Grieg’s Piano Concerto in A minor at both Shanghai Oriental Arts Centre and Xi’an Concert Hall.
Following these dates, he performs three solo recitals in Chongqing Grand Theatre (1 July), Beijing Concert Hall (3 July) and Guangzhou’s Guangdong Xinghai Concert Hall (5 July). At each, he plays a programme of Haydn, Chopin, Rachmaninov and Liszt.
Intermusica artists star at the 2016 Verbier Festival
Intermusica artists appear throughout the 2016 Verbier Festival, with all performances streamed live by Medici.tv. Set in the scenic mountain resort of Verbier, Switzerland, the festival draws the most respected names in classical music each year. See performance times, dates and venues below:
Baráti then performs two back to back solo recitals at the Église de Verbier Village on 26 July. At 11am, he performs Bach Sonatas for Solo Violin Nos 1, 2 and 3, and at 2.30pm he performs Bach Violin Partitas Nos 1, 2 and 3.
Daniil Trifonov joins forces with Leonidas Kavakos at the Église de Verbier at 11am on 29 July to perform Smetana Piano Trio, Op.15 alongside Gautier Capucon. Trifonov and Capucon also perform R. Schumann Fantasiestücke and Rachmaninov Cello Sonata in G minor.
Leonidas Kavakos then performs with Yuja Wang, Martin Fröst, Gautier Capucon, Roman Simovic and Blythe Teh Engstroem at the Salle des Combins at 7pm on 30 July, playing a programme of Bartók, Brahms and Robert Schumann.
Daniil Trifonov gives his third and final performance at the festival on 31 July, joining the Verbier Festival Orchestra and conductor Gábor Takács-Nagy at 7pm at the Salle des Combins to perform his own Piano Concerto.
Leonidas Kavakos performs the Brahms Double Concerto with cellist Alexander Buzlov and the Verbier Festival Orchestra and conductor Paavo Jarvi at the Salle des Combins at 7pm on 1 August.
George Li joins Emmanuel Krivine and the Verbier Festival Orchestra at the Salle des Combins at 7pm on 6 August. Li performs as soloist in Saint-Saens Piano Concerto No.2, in addition to Saint-Saens Violin Concerto No.3 with Joshua Bell and Bizet Symphony in C major.
Joshua Weilerstein conducts the Verbier Festival Academy Orchestra in a performance of Mozart Don Giovanni at 2.30pm on 7 August at the Salle des Combins.
Visit Medici.tv for broadcast links to each concert.
George Li performs with the Budapest Festival Orchestra at the Mariinsky Concert Hall
George Li joins Iván Fischer and his Budapest Festival Orchestra on their international tour at the Mariinsky Theatre on 9 June 2016.
Li performs Liszt Piano Concerto No. 2 in A major, part of a programme which also includes Stravinsky Jeu de cartes and Dvorák Symphony No. 8 in G major.
The following day, Li gives a solo recital at the Mariinsky Theatre, performing works by Haydn, Chopin, Rachmaninov and Liszt.
George Li wins Avery Fisher career grant
George Li has been awarded the Avery Fisher career grant at a ceremony in New York on 22 March 2016. The grant gives financial assistance and recognition to talented musicians living in the US who have shown the potential to develop exceptional careers. Previous recipients include Yuja Wang, Kirill Gerstein, Alisa Weilerstein and James Ehnes.
Since winning the Silver Medal at the 2015 Tchaikovsky Competition, Li has been in high demand both as a soloist and a recitalist, performing on tour with Valery Gergiev and the Mariinsky Orchestra in Birmingham, New York and the Far East. His impromptu recital in Beijing in December made him a star overnight in Asia.
Also this month, Li joins the Utah Symphony Orchestra on the 24, 25 and 26 March to perform Rachmaninov Piano Concerto No.2 with Robert Spano.
Recent and forthcoming highlights include his recital debut at the Auditorium du Louvre in Paris, a performance with St Petersburg Philharmonic in Japan, and a return to China for concerts with the Lucerne Symphony and James Gaffigan. Summer engagements include his return to Verbier Festival and his debut at Ravinia Festival.
“Bracing, fearless”: George Li’s Prokofiev with the Mariinsky Orchestra
George Li has received an outstanding review from the New York Times for his performance of Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No.1 with the Mariinsky Orchestra and Valery Gergiev on 24 February in New York. The newspaper wrote:
“A bracing, fearless account…Mr. Li’s playing combined youthful abandon with utter command.”
The ‘Prokofiev Marathon’ saw all of Prokofiev’s Piano Concertos performed at the Brooklyn Academy of Music by Li, Daniil Trifonov, Sergei Babayan, Alexander Toradze and Paul Wittgenstein. Trifonov’s performance of the Third Piano Concerto was also praised by the Times for its “delicacy and sparkling clarity”.
Read the full review on the New York Times website.
George Li performs with Valery Gergiev and the Mariinsky Orchestra in New York
George Li performs with the Mariinsky Orchestra and Valery Gergiev in a ‘Prokofiev Marathon’ at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in New York on 24 February 2016. In a concert which features all of Prokofiev’s Piano Concertos, Li performs Piano Concerto No.1, with fellow Intermusica artist Daniil Trifonov and Sergei Babayan performing the other two concerti. The concert is part of the ‘Mariinsky at BAM’ series, a two-year residency of the Mariinsky theatre at the Brooklyn Academy of Music.
Li recently performed with the Mariinsky Orchestra in Beijing in December 2015, when he also gave a brilliantly received impromptou recital.
George Li gives debut recital at the Auditorium du Louvre
George Li returns to Europe for two solo recitals in France this month, starting with his debut at the Auditorium du Louvre on 14 January 2016. Li performs Beethoven 32 Variations on an Original Theme in C minor, Rachmaninoff Variations on a Theme of Corelli, Ravel ‘La valse’ and Liszt Hungarian Rhapsody No.2. The concert will be recorded for deferred broadcast by France Musique.
On 15 January, Li travels to Lyon for a performance in the Les virtuoses du piano series organised by the Frédéric Chopin association. The programme features Beethoven, Rachmaninov and Ravel, and also includes Chopin’s Scherzo No.2 in B-flat minor, the Impromptu No.2 in F-sharp major, and the Variations on Là ci darem la mano.
Li last performed in France in August 2015, when he performed at the International Music Festival in Dinard to great success: "[Li] received a standing ovation from the Dinard audience […] He presented five encores in the packed Stephan-Bouttet auditorium to an audience totally committed to his breathtaking virtuosity and natural grace’
“A superstar”: George Li receives rapturous reviews for an impromptu recital in Beijing
George Li stepped in with fifteen minutes notice on 3 December to cover an indisposed soloist during a concert with the Mariinsky Orchestra and Valery Gergiev at the NCPA in Beijing. Instead of the scheduled performance of Rachmaninov Rhapsody on a Theme by Paganini, Li ended the concert with a short solo recital of Beethoven’s 32 Variations in C minor, and Liszt’s Consolation No.3 and Hungarian Rhapsody No.2. The Beijing audience kept Li on stage until nearly midnight, when he finished the concert with a final encore of Liszt’s La Campanella. Earlier the the evening, Li performed Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No.2 with the orchestra and Gergiev.
His impromptu recital received widespread praise from the Beijing press – read some of the reviews below:
“After George Li’s excellent playing…the excited audience in the concert hall moved forward to the stage, as if to cheer a hero who had just saved the world.”
Beijing Morning Post
“His wonderful playing captured the hearts of the audience and he played Liszt’s La Campanella as an encore. He was made a superstar on this night by his powerful performance. He will have a limitless career!”
Beijing Evening News, December 2015
“To the audience, the most impressive moment was when the 20-year-old American born Chinese pianist George Li stepped in to cover Daniel Kharitonov, lighting up the night by his brilliant playing. Soon after the concert, this young talent is already an idol for many in the audience.”
Beijing Times, December 2015
Click here to watch Li's full-length recital at the Mariinsky in St. Petersburg just days before his triumphant debut at Beijing’s NCPA.
George Li performs with Mariinsky Orchestra and Valery Gergiev at NCPA Beijing
George Li continues his tour of high-profile engagements, as part of the Tchaikovsky laureates celebrations, joining the Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra and its Artistic Director Valery Gergiev on their tour to Beijing on 3 December 2015. Li joins the orchestra as they perform a Rachmaninov cycle at the National Centre for Performing Arts.
Li performs Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No.2, in a programme which also includes the composer’s Symphony No.1, the Symphonic Dances, and the Piano Concerto No.1 and the Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini performed by Daniel Kharitonov.
In November, Li returned to Russia for two acclaimed performances, in Moscow with the National Philharmonic of Russia and Vladimir Spivakov, and in St Petersburg for a solo recital at Mariinsky Concert Hall. Click here to watch the recital.
George Li performs with Valery Gergiev and the Mariinsky Orchestra in Birmingham
After his huge triumph at the 2015 Tchaikovsky Competition, pianist George Li has embarked on a European tour, celebrating the laureates of the competition.
On 28 October 2015, Li performs at Symphony Hall in Birmingham with the Mariinsky Orchestra and Valery Gergiev, as part of the orchestra’s UK tour. Li ends the concert by performing Liszt’s Piano Concerto No 1 in E flat major.
Li’s next stop with the Tchaikovsky Laureates is on the 26 November, when he returns to Moscow to perform with the National Philharmonic Orchestra of Russia and Vladimir Spivakov.
Pianist George Li joins Intermusica for worldwide management
We are delighted to announce the signing of pianist George Li for worldwide management.
A name on the lips of many people around the world right now, Chinese-American pianist George Li is the 2015 Tchaikovsky Piano Competition Silver Medallist. His sensational performances in Moscow during the summer were seen by over 10 million people in 179 countries across the globe. Among his many accolades, George was the First Prize winner of the 2014 Concours International Grand Prix Animato in Paris, the 2012 Gilmore Young Artist Award (its youngest recipient), the Verbier Academy’s 2012 Tabor Foundation Piano Award and the 2010 Young Concert Artists International Auditions.
George Li participated in a masterclass with Lang Lang at the age of 9 and since his orchestral debut at the same age, Li has collaborated with orchestras such as the Cleveland Orchestra and the Simon Bolivar Youth Orchestra of Venezuela and has performed recitals at major venues throughout the world, including the Concertgebouw, Musikverein, Dvořák Hall, Severance Hall, Jordan Hall, The Tabernacle, Lincoln Center and the Kennedy Center. He has also performed for President Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel at The White House in Washington D.C. Upcoming highlights include many performances around the world with Valery Gergiev and the Mariinsky Orchestra, National Philharmonic of Russia, NCPA Orchestra of Beijing, among others.
George Li is currently enrolled in the prestigious Harvard-New England Conservatory joint degree program, studying with Wha Kyung Byun and Russell Sherman.
Click here to watch George Li perform Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No.1 and Prokofiev Piano Concerto No.3 in Moscow.