Listen to the International Piano Series podcast with Mitsuko Uchida

Mitsuko Uchida talks about the strangeness of Schumann, her piano collection and her interval snack of choice.

You can hear Mitsuko Uchida perform a recital of Schumann, Schoenberg and Bach on Tuesday 15 January 2013, 7.30pm at Royal Festival Hall.

Find out more / book tickets

 

Watch Alice Sara Ott perform Pictures at an Exhibition

You can see Alice Sara Ott perform Mussorgsky’s ‘Pictures at an Exhibition’ at Royal Festival Hall on Tuesday 12 February, 7.30pm.

Find out more/book tickets

Watch Francesco Piemontesi performing at the BBC Music Magazine Awards

Pianist Francesco Piemontesi has garnered a string of accolades that mark him out as a rising star, including his recent BBC Music Magazine Award, presented to him by Alfred Brendel.

“It is most gratifying that in a time when some careers are made with the excessive help of promotion, there is a young pianist with real talent, a pianist of natural poise and grace, of wonderful technical equipment, and of the ability to remind us what beautiful playing means: cantabile playing that is colourful, luminous and harmonious, without in the least lacking tension and atmosphere. I congratulate Francesco Piemontesi very warmly and wish him a wonderful future, and I congratulate the producer for the lovely sound on the record.” Alfred Brendel, speaking at the award ceremony at Kings Place in April.

Watch the award ceremony in full, or jump to 10’29 to watch Francesco Piemontesi performing live at the event:

Francesco Piemontesi makes his International Piano Series debut on Wednesday 7 November, 7.30pm at Queen Elizabeth Hall.

Find out more / book tickets

Listen to the International Piano Series podcast with pianist Christian Blackshaw

Christian Blackshaw talks in depth about his love of Schumann and Schubert, ahead of his Queen Elizabeth Hall recital next year as part of the International Piano Series.

 

You can hear Christian Blackshaw perform on 26 February 2013, 7.30pm at Queen Elizabeth Hall.

Find out more/book tickets

INTERVIEW WITH MAYUKO KATSUMURA & SPECIAL TICKET OFFER

Japanese violin player Mayuko Katumura will perform later this month in the Purcell Room alongside Noriko Kawai on the piano. We caught up with Mayuko ahead of the concert:

You grew up in Japan, but studied in London and have since gone on to perform all over the world. Can you tell us a bit more about your musical background?

My grandfather (my mother’s side) was a great classical music lover and every weekend at the family-get-together since I was a baby, I used to listen to LPs of all the major violin concertos. From this very early introduction to classical music,  I have never thought of any other profession than as a violinist.

When I studied at the music high school in Tokyo, I was lucky to have a wonderful violin teacher who studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. He recommended I study with Professor Yfrah Neaman at the Guildhall, who was his teacher.  So I came to London when I was 19 and studied with Yfrah for 6 years. It must have been difficult for him to talk with me at first as I did not speak English at all then. However, I was surrounded by kind, generous English friends at the Guildhall and I soon got used to all the aspect of living in London

What’s your earliest musical memory?
At my grandparents at the weekends, when my mother was trying to make me have an afternoon nap, she always play the LP of Schubert’s string quartet “ Death and Maiden “. When she let me listen to this, I always knew I was going to be left on my own while everybody else was together in the other room. I was only 2 years old. However, this memory stays very clear in my mind, and I still feel the same loneliness whenever I listen to this quartet!

What are you particularly looking forward to about your forthcoming concert at Southbank Centre? 
It is first time for me to perform at the Purcell Room, and I am very excited about it, as ever since I came to England and attended concerts at the Southbank Centre, I was saying to myself that I want to perform in this small and intimate hall in the future.

Is there a piece of music you would pick out as one of the ‘best’ works ever written? 
I would say Bach’s Chaconne from the Partita no. 2

What other talent or skill would you like to possess? 
I always imagine what would happen if I could speak French and German when I woke up next morning! It took 14 years for me to learn English, so I really wish I had a talent for languages!

If you could programme your ideal Southbank Centre show, which artists (living or dead) would you bring together?
Henryk Szeryng (I am a big fan) presented by Mr. Bean

What is the most played piece of music on your mp3 player or in your CD collection?
Currently it is Henryk Szeryng playing Handel’s Sonata in D. His playing is really heavenly.

Do you have any strange rituals you carry out before or after you perform? 
I always stretch out my legs like a Sumo wrestler before wearing my concert dress. This action is called “Matawari “in the Sumo world, and is very important in preparation for the fight!

We are a very limited number of tickets available at 50% discount. Simply quote the word ‘MAYUKO’ over the phone or online into the promo-code box on the event page before choosing your seats.

For more information about the concert and to book your tickets  click here

MAYUKO KATSUMURA & NORIKO KAWAI PERFORM AT SOUTHBANK CENTRE

On 26th September, we welcome two extremely talented Japanese musicians, Mayuko Katsumura and Noriko Kawai, to Southbank Centre’s Purcell Room. Violinist Mayuko, a major prize winner in national music competitions in Japan, will be performing alongside Noriko Kawai on the piano.

For a sneak preview of what’s in store, you can listen to this audio clip of Mayuko performing a 2nd movement of the Shostakovich Violin Concerto no.1 with the London Symphony Orchestra at Abbey Road Studios in March earlier this year.

Listen to Mayuko Katsumura – live at Abbey Road studio.

Click here for more info and to book tickets

COMPOSER DAVID BRAID AND PIANIST SERGEI PODOBEDOV ON BBC RADIO 3 + SPECIAL OFFER ON TICKETS

Composer David Braid and pianist Sergei Podobedov will appear together on BBC Radio 3’s InTune programme on June 29th ahead of their forthcoming concert at Southbank Centre. The show starts at 4.30pm that day but will also be available on iplayer.

David will be discussing his recent work and Sergei will be performing ‘Lyrical Toccata’ one of the ‘Three Pieces for Piano’ that feature on David’s new CD with Toccata Classics: ‘Chamber and Instrumental Music’, Please see: http://bit.ly/LaTRXo for details of the new disc, which will be released next month.

Sergei will also be performing some movements from Schumann’s Carnaval, which he will perform in full at David Braid’s forthcoming CD launch concert at the Purcell Room at Queen Elizabeth Hall, on Monday 2nd July at 19:45.

We are offering a special offer on tickets for this event – £8 for the best available seats. Simply type the word ‘BRAIDMUSIC’ into the promo-code box on the event page before choosing your seats.

For more information on David Braid and Sergei Podobedov, please see: www.davidbraid.net and http://www.sergeipodobedov.com

To find out more about the concert, and to book tickets, click here