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  • Carnegie Hall Presents
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CARNEGIE HALL PRESENTS

Marc-André Hamelin, Piano

Thursday, November 15, 2018 8 PM Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage
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Marc-André Hamelin by Sim Canetty-Clarke
Marc-André Hamelin’s performances are always eagerly awaited events. The New York Times praised his recent appearance at Carnegie Hall for its “tremendous power.” Hear him play Castelnuovo-Tedesco’s evocative depiction of cypress trees, a legendary pianist’s arrangement of French popular songs, and some of the most technically challenging classics in the repertoire. The Washington Post has said Hamelin’s “technical facility is breathtaking,” ideal for Busoni’s grand arrangement of Bach’s monumental Chaconne—an arrangement that asks the pianist to play “quasi trombone”—and dazzling showpieces by Schumann and Chopin.

Performers

Marc-André Hamelin, Piano

Program

BACH Chaconne in D Minor from Violin Partita No. 2 (arr. Busoni)
SCHUMANN Fantasy in C Major, Op. 17
ALEXIS WEISSENBERG Six arrangements of Songs Sung by Charles Trénet
CASTELNUOVO-TEDESCO Cypresses, Op. 17
CHOPIN Polonaise-fantaisie in A-flat Major, Op. 61
CHOPIN Scherzo No. 4

Encores:
SCHUMANN "Vogel als Prophet" from Waldszenen, Op. 82, No. 7
BUSONI "Turandots Frauengemach" (Intermezzo) from Elegies, BV 249, No. 4

Event Duration

The printed program will last approximately two hours, including one 20-minute intermission.

At a Glance

BACH  Chaconne in D Minor from Violin Partita No. 2, BWV 1004

Mendelssohn, Schumann, and Brahms are among the 19th-century composers who made keyboard transcriptions of Bach’s monumental D-Minor Chaconne for solo violin. In his famous arrangement, pianist-composer Ferruccio Busoni added colors and sonorities designed to enhance the grandeur of Bach’s musical conception.

 

SCHUMANN  Fantasy in C Major, Op. 17

Like most of Schumann’s solo piano works of the 1830s, the C-Major Fantasy was a musical valentine to his future bride, Clara Wieck. The music blends the personalities of the composer’s fictitious alter egos: the stormy, impulsive Florestan and dreamy, ruminative Eusebius. Clara professed to hear “an entire orchestra” in the work’s march-like second movement.

 

WEISSENBERG  Six Arrangements of Songs Sung by Charles Trénet

Together with Maurice Chevalier and Édith Piaf, Charles Trénet epitomized the worldly, debonair elegance of 20th-century popular French song. Marc-André Hamelin reconstructed these unpublished versions of six Trénet chansons from recordings by the arranger, pianist Alexis Weissenberg.

 

CASTELNUOVO-TEDESCO  Cypresses, Op. 17

Italian-born composer Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco often drew inspiration from the landscapes of his native country. This short but richly evocative tone poem takes its name from the iconic trees that punctuate the countryside around the Tuscan village where his wife’s family owned a villa.

 

CHOPIN  Polonaise-fantaisie in A-flat Major, Op. 61; Scherzo No. 4 in E Major, Op. 54

Chopin often mixed genres in ways that broadened his music’s expressive range and challenged listeners’ expectations. Both the hybrid Polonaise-fantaisie and the great E-Major Scherzo validate Schumann’s praise of the Polish composer-pianist as “the boldest and proudest poetic spirit of the time.”

Bios

Marc-André Hamelin

Marc-André Hamelin is known worldwide for his unrivaled blend of consummate musicianship and brilliant technique in the great works of the established repertoire, as well as for his intrepid exploration of the rarities of the 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries in concert and on recordings.

The ...

Marc-André Hamelin is known worldwide for his unrivaled blend of consummate musicianship and brilliant technique in the great works of the established repertoire, as well as for his intrepid exploration of the rarities of the 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries in concert and on recordings.

The 2018–2019 season includes Mr. Hamelin’s return to Carnegie Hall for this evening’s recital, as well as recitals at London’s Wigmore Hall and in Montreal, Seattle, Berlin, Florence, Salzburg, and Istanbul, among others. Mr. Hamelin appears with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Stuttgart Philharmonic Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra, and Oregon Symphony, and tours in Europe with the Amsterdam Sinfonietta.

Mr. Hamelin was a distinguished member of the jury of the 15th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition in 2017. Each of the 30 competitors performed Mr. Hamelin’s Toccata on “L’homme armé,” marking the first time the composer of the competition’s commissioned work was also a member of the jury. Although primarily a performer, Mr. Hamelin has also composed music throughout his career. The majority of his works are published by Edition Peters.

Mr. Hamelin records exclusively for Hyperion Records. His most recent releases are a recording of Schubert’s Piano Sonata in B-Flat Major and Four Impromptus, D. 935; Morton Feldman’s For Bunita Marcus; a landmark recording of Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring and Concerto for Two Pianos with Leif Ove Andsnes; and Medtner’s Piano Concerto No. 2 and Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 3 with the London Philharmonic Orchestra and Vladimir Jurowski.

Mr. Hamelin was honored as a 2014 ECHO Klassik Instrumentalist of Year. His three-disc set of Busoni’s late piano music and an album of his own compositions, Hamelin: Études, were cited as recordings of the year by Diapason and Classica. The latter album also received a 2010 Grammy Award nomination (Mr. Hamelin’s ninth), as well as first prize from the German Record Critics’ Award Association.

Mr. Hamelin lives in Boston with his wife, Cathy Fuller. Born in Montreal, he is the recipient of a lifetime achievement award from the German Record Critics’ Award Association. Mr. Hamelin is also an Officer of the Order of Canada, Chevalier de l’Ordre national du Québec, and a member of the Royal Society of Canada.

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