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Piano Festival

16.11.-24.11. 2019

 

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    Franz Schubert (1797–1828)
    Piano Sonata in A minor, D 537
    Piano Sonata in C major, D 840
    Piano Sonata in B-flat major, D 960

    “Perhaps there is a God because there is Schubert,” Mitsuko Uchida once ventured. This bon mot wonderfully sums up the importance that the Viennese composer has for the pianist, who finds Schubert so profoundly human. Born in Japan in 1948, she has long been a British citizen and received the title of Lady Commander in 2009. In her view, Schubert serves as a guide for everyone: you can love, dream, and suffer with him. So it’s no wonder that Uchida will devote her recital entirely to her favorite idol, playing three sonatas from three different creative phases. The ideal way of playing Schubert is something that she has internalized since her youth. At the age of 12, Uchida came to the city on the Danube because her father was appointed Ambassador to Austria. The softness of the Viennese language and its subtle three-quarter time flow into the sound of her Schubert interpretations. As does her pleasure in nuance. When a piano builder once marveled about her: “Finally, a pianist! The others are only fortists,” she took it as a special compliment.

    Dame Mitsuko Uchida

    The pianist Mitsuko Uchida, who was born in Tokyo in 1948, began playing the keyboard at the age of six. After her father had been appointed the Japanese ambassador to Austria, she continued her education at the Vienna Academy of Music with Richard Hauser. Her international career began with prizes at the ARD Competition in Munich in 1966, the Beethoven Competition in Vienna in 1970, and the Leeds International Pianoforte Competition in 1975. Her repertoire focuses on the piano works of Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, and the Second Viennese School. Uchida has performed with the Cleveland Orchestra, the Chicago Symphony, the Berlin Philharmonic, the Royal Concertgebouworkest, and the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, as well as the London Symphony and the London Philharmonic Orchestra; her partners on the podium include Gustavo Dudamel, Bernard Haitink, Mariss Jansons, Vladimir Jurowski, Riccardo Muti, Andris Nelsons, Sir Simon Rattle, and Esa-Pekka Salonen. Since 2016, Uchida has been Artistic Partner of the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, with whom she performs, above all, Mozart’s piano concertos. Recitals regularly take her to Vienna, Berlin, Paris, Amsterdam, London, New York, and Tokyo, as well as to the Salzburg Festival and the Salzburg Mozart Week. She appeared as LUCERNE FESTIVAL’s “artiste étoile” in 2013. Uchida has received the coveted Grammy Award twice: in 2011, for her recording of the Mozart concertos with the Cleveland Orchestra; and in 2017, for an album of lieder with Dorothea Röschmann. Mitsuko Uchida was made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 2009, and she received the Mozarteum Foundation’s Golden Mozart Medal and the Japanese Praemium Imperiale in 2015. She also holds the Gold Medal by the Royal Philharmonic Society in London and an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Cambridge.

    LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 2 September 1990 performing the Schoenberg Piano Concerto with the Cleveland Orchestra led by Christoph von Dohnányi.

    October 2019
     

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