Performance Monday, January 21, 2013 | 7:30 PM

Nicolas Hodges

Zankel Hall
The Guardian of London raves, “With an energy that sometimes defies belief, Nicolas Hodges’s recitals always boldly go where few other pianists dare.” Here at Carnegie Hall, he’s bound to captivate from beginning to end, with a wide-ranging program that begins with Debussy and concludes with Stravinsky's Three Movements from Pétrouchka.

The contemporary work on this program is part of My Time, My Music.


  • Nicolas Hodges, Piano


  • CARTER Two Thoughts About the Piano
  • BUSONI Giga, bolero e variazione (after Mozart) from An die Jugend, Book III
  • HARRISON BIRTWISTLE Gigue Machine (US Premiere, co-commissioned by Carnegie Hall)
  • DEBUSSY Etudes, Book II


  • Nicolas Hodges

    Nicolas Hodges was born in London in 1970. One of the most exciting performers of his generation, he has captivated audiences worldwide with his interpretations of Classical, Romantic, 20th-century, and contemporary repertoire.

    Mr. Hodges's concerto engagements have included performances with the New York Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, MET Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, and St. Louis Symphony, in addition to European orchestras that include the Berliner Philharmoniker, Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, Bamberger Symphoniker, Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra, WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln, SWR Sinfonieorchester Baden-Baden und Freiburg, London Symphony Orchestra, London Philharmonic, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra, Helsinki Philharmonic, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, and Orquesta y Coro Nacionales de España. Other performances further afield include dates with the Tokyo Philharmonic and Melbourne Symphony. Among the distinguished conductors with whom Mr. Hodges has collaborated are Daniel Barenboim, James Levine, Leonard Slatkin, David Robertson, Hans Graf, Oliver Knussen, Thomas Adès, George Benjamin, Jukka-Pekka Saraste, Ilan Volkov, and Tadaaki Otaka.

    In recent seasons, Mr. Hodges has become closely associated with the piano works of an extraordinary array of contemporary composers, including Georges Aperghis, Elliott Carter, Beat Furrer, Thomas Adès, Harrison Birtwistle, Wolfgang Rihm, and Salvatore Sciarrino, all of whom have written works for him. Forthcoming premieres include concertos by Hugues  Dufourt, Pascal Dusapin, Miroslav Srnka, Gerald Barry, Hans Thomalla, and Mark Andre.

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Stravinsky's Three Movements from Pétrouchka (La semaine grasse, con moto—Allegretto—Tempo giusto—Agitato)
Maurizio Pollini, Piano
Deutsche Grammaphon

At a Glance

The collection of works on this evening's program pays homage to the etude and in turn, the composers who wrote them. French for "study," the etude was established as a genre with the first generation of piano pedagogues, including Muzio Clementi, and continued by Carl Czerny (considered to be the father of the etude). Franz Liszt, and of course Frédéric Chopin, developed this tradition further, creating the concert etude—a piece not only designed to advance pianistic technique, but also suitable for public performance. These works are fiercely difficult and often focus on developing one particular technique of the pianist.

Though Claude Debussy's is the only work formally titled etude, those of Elliott Carter, Ferruccio Busoni, and Harrison Birtwistle also have these focused objectives—whether it be rhythm, texture, articulation, counterpoint, or speed. And like the Debussy anthology reflects on earlier etude models, the Busoni and Birtwistle pieces also recall the gigue, a popular dance form of eras past.
Program Notes
Lead support for Carnegie Hall commissions is provided by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
This performance is part of Keyboard Virtuosos III: Keynotes.

Part of