Feb. 17-18: Emerald City Music Presents Unrivaled: The Pianists of Cliburn
Emerald City Music Presents Unrivaled: The Pianists of Cliburn Featuring Wu Han, alongside 2022 Cliburn Winners Anna Geniushene, Dmytro Choni
in Music by Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninoff, and Scriabin
Violinist Kristin Lee, Artistic Director
Friday, February 17, 2023 at 8pm 415 Westlake 415 Westlake Avenue N | Seattle, WA
Saturday, February 18, 2023 at 7:30pm The Minnaert Center for the Arts 2011 Mottman Rd SW | Olympia, WA
Tickets and Information: www.emeraldcitymusic.org/season/unrivaled-the-pianists-of-cliburn-seattle www.emeraldcitymusic.org/season/unrivaled-the-pianists-of-cliburn-olympia
“[Emerald City Music is] providing what artistic director Kristin Lee calls a ‘Friday date-night vibe’,” – The Seattle Times www.emeraldcitymusic.org
Seattle & Olympia, WA – Emerald City Music (ECM) presents Unrivaled: The Pianists of Cliburn on Friday, February 17, 2023 at 8pm in Seattle at 415 Westlake (415 Westlake Avenue N) and Saturday, February 18, 2023 at 7:30pm in Olympia at The Minnaert Center for the Arts (2011 Mottman Rd SW).
Emerald City Music presents this rare opportunity to hear the 2022 winners of the most pre-eminent piano competition in the world: The Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. Every four years, The Cliburn features the world’s top 18- to 30-year-old pianists competing for gold in front of an audience of over 10 million online and live. Emerald City Music is proud to present Russian pianist Anna Geniushene (2022 Cliburn Competition Silver prize winner) and Ukrainian pianist Dmytro Choni (2022 Cliburn Competition bronze prize winner) alongside the legendary pianist and Cliburn juror, Wu Han.
The unique experience of seeing these pianists perform piano four-hands and on two, side-by-side pianos demonstrates the staying power of music bringing people of all cultures and backgrounds together. The performance will delve into the deep influence of Russian composers on piano literature, beginning with the Romantic music of Tchaikovsky, later exploring the mystical melodies of Scriabin, and finally concluding with music by Rachmaninoff, whose 150th birth date we celebrate this season. The program includes Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite For Two Pianos (Arr. Nicholas Economou); Rachmaninoff’s Suite No. 1 For Two Pianos, Op. 5; Tchaikovsky’s Lullaby, Op. 16, No. 1; Tchaikovsky’s Scherzo À La Russe, Op. 1, No. 1; Scriabin’s Piano Sonata No. 4, Op. 30; and Rachmaninoff’s Suite No. 1 For Two Pianos, Op. 17.
For the Seattle concert held at 415 Westlake, audiences can look forward to ECM’s flagship “date-night experience,” which blends vibrant classical performance with an open bar, and a “wander-around” concert setting with no stage dividing the audience from the musicians. The second performance of the program in Olympia will take place at The Minnaert Center for the Arts.
Emerald City Music (ECM) is the Pacific Northwest home for eclectic, intimate, and vibrant classical chamber music experiences. Known for their casual environment combined with award winning artists, ECM has gained recognition from several high-profile publications like Seattle Times, The City Arts deemed ECM "the beacon for the casual-classical movement". Unique to only ECM attendees are encouraged to wear casual clothes, enjoy the open bar and walk around in order to increase the satisfaction of each of the ECM concerts.
This performance, and all of ECM’s Mainstage performances this season, will be recorded live and then made available on Emerald TV, ECM’s subscription-based streaming platform for performances and additional video content.
About the Musicians:
Anna Geniushene: Anna Geniushene’s fresh, layered, and powerful interpretations defined her participation at the 2022 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition—and won her the coveted silver medal and the adoration of fans around the globe. And when Anna closed the Cliburn Competition with a momentous performance of the Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 1, Gramophone likened it to the contest’s revered namesake, “I couldn’t help but equate Anna Geniushene’s seasoned pianism to Cliburn at his best.” Born in Moscow on New Year’s Day in 1991, Anna made her recital debut just seven years later in the small hall of the Berlin Philharmonic. She has since developed a diverse and versatile career as an artist; a dedication to chamber music –including duo piano repertoire with her husband, Lukas Geniušas– and close collaboration with Quartetto di Cremona; and the creation of her own festival of collaborative music-making (NikoFest).
Dmytro Choni: Dmytro Choni took home bronze at the 2022 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, only the second Ukrainian pianist to medal at the prestigious contest. He won hearts and accolades with a compelling and colorful musicality that is fortified by a genuine, immediately engaging stage presence. Dmytro’s debut album was released by Naxos in 2020; it received a “Supersonic Award” from Pizzicato and was highly acclaimed by the international critics, one raving he “could be one of the 21st century’s most outstanding pianists” (David’s Review Corner). Dmytro Choni began piano in his native Kyiv when he was 4 years old. After a particularly meaningful performance at the age of 14, which he calls “a turning point,” his lifelong journey of professional musicianship began. In March, he told the Fort Worth Report that music is “always kind of a hideaway from what’s going on in the world. Through the music, you can try to project the best possible emotion, the optimism, the hope.”
Wu Han: Pianist Wu Han, recipient of Musical America’s Musician of the Year Award, enjoys a multi-faceted musical life that encompasses performing, recording, and artistic direction at the highest levels. Currently artistic co-director of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and Music@Menlo, she also serves as artistic advisor for Wolf Trap’s Chamber Music in the Barns and for Palm Beach’s Society of the Four Arts.Recent concert activities have taken her from New York’s Lincoln Center stages to the most important concert halls in the United States, Europe, and Asia. She is the founder and artistic director of ArtistLed, classical music’s first artist-directed, internet-based recording label. Her more than 80 releases on ArtistLed, CMS Live, and Music@Menlo Live include masterworks of the chamber repertoire with numerous distinguished musicians.
About Kristin Lee, ECM Artistic Director
A recipient of the 2015 Avery Fisher Career Grant, as well as a top prizewinner of the 2012 Walter W. Naumburg Competition and the Astral Artists’ 2010 National Auditions, Kristin Lee is a violinist remarkable versatility and impeccable technique who enjoys a vibrant career as a soloist, recitalist, chamber musician, and educator. “Her technique is flawless, and she has a sense of melodic shaping that reflects an artistic maturity,” writes the St. Louis PostDispatch, and The Strad reports, “She seems entirely comfortable with stylistic diversity, which is one criterion that separates the run-of-the-mill instrumentalists from true artists.
In addition to her dynamic performing career, Lee was recently appointed to the faculty of University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music as Assistant Professor of Violin. She is the artistic director of Emerald City Music in Seattle, a chamber music series she co-founded in 2015. Also an accomplished chamber musician, Kristin Lee is a member of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, performing at Lincoln Center in New York and on tour with CMS throughout each season, as well as a member of Camerata Pacifica in Santa Barbara, sitting as The Bernard Gondos Chair.
Kristin Lee has appeared as soloist with leading orchestras including The Philadelphia Orchestra, St. Louis Symphony, St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, New Jersey Symphony, Hong Kong Philharmonic, Ural Philharmonic of Russia, Korean Broadcasting Symphony, Guiyang Symphony Orchestra of China, Orquesta Sinfonica Nacional of Dominican Republic, and many others. She has performed on the world’s finest concert stages, including Carnegie Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, the Kennedy Center, Philadelphia’s Kimmel Center, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Ravinia Festival, the Louvre Museum in Paris, Washington, D.C.’s Phillips Collection, and Korea’s Kumho Art Gallery.
Born in Seoul, Lee began studying violin at age five and within one year won First Prize at the Korea Times Violin Competition. In 1995, she moved to the US to continue her studies under Sonja Foster and in 1997 entered The Juilliard School’s Pre-College. In 2000, Lee was chosen to study with Itzhak Perlman after he heard her perform with the Pre-College Symphony. Lee holds a Master’s degree from The Juilliard School. For more information, visit www.violinistkristinlee.com.
Emerald City Music (ECM) is the Pacific Northwest home for eclectic, intimate, and vibrant classical chamber music experiences. Deemed "the beacon for the casual-classical movement" (CityArts), ECM hosts world-renowned musicians in unique concert experiences in its South Lake Union home venue, 415 Westlake. Catch them on tour also in residence in Olympia, Bellingham, and New York City.
Founded in 2015, Emerald City Music produces and tours seven productions annually, with each tour visiting Seattle’s South Lake Union (415 Westlake, a chic contemporary venue with an open bar), Olympia’s Minnaert Center (a 495 seat modern concert hall), a once annual concert at the Bellingham Music Festival, and an annual concert in New York City.
ECM gained recognition regionally and nationally as a major player in the chamber music scene. Artistic Director Kristin Lee –– a touring violinist awarded the Avery Fisher Career Grant and who is a member of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center –– is regarded for her innovative programming that both honors the tradition of chamber music while expanding the genre’s boundary past common limits. Emerald City Music made a name for itself beginning in its second season with a national collaborative commission with Grammy-winning composer John Luther Adams, and has continued to press the boundary of chamber music with accolades like a tour of Steve Reich’s iconic and rare Music for 18 Musicians, a pitch-black performance of Georg Haas’s “In the Dark” quartet, and the West Coast debut of the Danish folk group The Dreamers’ Circus.
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