SAITAMA ARTS THEATER

MUSIC

Piano Étoile Series Vol.27
Benjamin Grosvenor Piano Recital

Brightest hope of British pianism! 

Sep.5.2015 / 3:00pm

TICKET INFO

ON SALE TO GENERAL PUBLIC

May.30.2015 / 10am-
 *Set Tickets(Piano Étoile Series Vol.27~Vol.28 and Encore! Vol.4~Vol.5)
  Apr.25.2015 / 10am-

SAITAMA ARTS FOUNDATION MEMBERS PRESALE

May.23.2015 / 10am-
 *Set Tickets(Piano Étoile Series Vol.27~Vol.28 and Encore! Vol.4~Vol.5)
  Apr.18.2015 / 10am-

 

TICKET AVAILABLE AT BOX OFFICE ON THE DAY OF PERFORMANCE

HOW TO BUY TICKETS

Benjamin Grosvenor Interview


We are very happy and are sincerely looking forward to your wonderful program. Generally, what is your focus when preparing a program?

Grosvenor: My (general) focus is simply to bring the best that I can out of the music! In preparing a varied programme like this one, each piece brings its own set of challenges.

 

The theme of your program, “Baroque in the Romantic School,” is so interesting. Can you tell us about your interest in Romantic composers’ return to the Baroque style? And what was your intention in selecting “Liszt: Venezia e Napoli” as the final work in this program?
G: The idea of looking back in this way is something that attracted many composers, and particularly those of the romantic era. It is fascinating to see the many ways in which these composers ‘inhabit’ elements of the baroque. When Mendelssohn wrote his Preludes and Fugues, he expressed concern to his publisher that they might not be popular as fugues were out of fashion! They are all wonderful pieces, and still a little more out of fashion than they deserve. Busoni’s arrangement of the Chaconne is fantastically original – there is almost as much of Busoni here as of Bach. Originally for violin, it is as if he transcribed it first for organ, such are the sonorities that he creates.  The Franck Prelude, Chorale and Fugue is a moving, spiritual work, full of great sadness and struggle. In a master stroke, after a great summit of the fugue, the chorale theme returns, quiet and despairing before the two combine in the eventual climax of the work. It is only after this that the struggle is overcome, and the piece ends in jubilation – triumph over sadness. Something similar could be said for Ravel’s Rombeau de Couperin. Compared with these two masterpieces, it is a quite light-hearted work. Given each movement is dedicated to friend of the composer who died in the Great War, he was criticized for not writing music sombre enough.  To this he responded "The dead are sad enough, in their eternal silence”. The music here is inspired by the sensibilities of French keyboard baroque suites.
One can often have too much of a good thing, so after the Ravel we depart from the baroque theme. Liszt’s Venezia e Napoli quotes themes that would have been familiar of the streets of Italy at the time. The work is rich in melodies, atmophere and colour. It is quite an underrated work, and though the Tarantella is often played, it whole set is very effective.

 

How did you first encounter music and the piano?

G: My mother is a piano teacher, and my first lessons were with her. I heard the piano often from a young age and when it came time for me to choose an instrument to learn, I went with this one.


What led to your decision to become a professional pianist?
G: Of course, playing the piano was always something I enjoyed, but when I was 9 or 10, I won a few competitions and discovered that I might not be bad at it. These led to some concerts, and it went from there.

 

Please tell us about your hopes and plans as a musician. For example, what works would you like to undertake and what sort of musician do you wish to be?

G: I would like to be quite a versatile musician, and have a repertoire that encompasses a great many styles. I don’t think I would ever want to specialize. Perhaps this is reflected in some of my recital programmes, which are often very varied.

 

What do you think is the special appeal of the piano?

G: It is an instrument of enormous capabilities. It is like having an orchestra under your fingers, such is the range of colour and sound that it can produce. Of course, it has its limitations, one could say. It is in essence a percussion instrument –the hammers hit the strings and the sound decays – and one cannot sustain and elide notes in the same way that one can with a violin, or ultimately the human voice. A good pianist therefore needs to be a master of illusion, using a variety of effects and techniques to achieve a truly vocal tone on this great instrument.


Thank you very much. We are sincerely looking forward to your concert.


 

Date

Sep.5.2015 / 3:00pm

Venue

Saitama Arts Theater / Concert Hall

Program

Mendelssohn: No.1 and No.5 from "Preludes and Fugues", Op.35
Bach (Arr. by Busoni): Chaconne
Franck: Prélude, choral et fugue en si mineur
Ravel: Le tombeau de Couperin
Liszt: Venezia e Napoli

Please note: Above changed in part from initially announced program.

Presented by

Saitama Arts Foundation

Sponsored by

Yono Food Center

Under the auspice of

Piano Teachers' National Association (PTNA) / British Council

Nursery

Childcare services for 2 year-old and older children are available during the performance presented by the Foundation. Reservation is necessary by one week before the performance. Please contact KOMAMU.
Tel: 048-256-1666 (9am-6pm except Sat, Sun, and Holiday)
1,000 yen / a child

 

TICKET INFO

TICKET AVAILABLE AT BOX OFFICE ON THE DAY OF PERFORMANCE

PRICES

Front seat 3,500yen
Balcony seat 2,500yen
U25*(Balcony limited) 1,000yen
SAFMembers Front seat 3,200yen


Set Tickets (Piano Étoile Series Vol.27~Vol.28 and Encore! Vol.4~Vol.5):
Front seat 12,500yen
Balcony seat 10,500yen
U25* (seat category limited to Balcony) 4,500yen


*Ages 25 and under/Proof of eligibility must be shown for U25 concessions at the entrance of the theater/hall on the day of the performance.

Please Note: Balcony Seats may have an impeded view.

ON SALE

<Public> May.30.2015 / 10am-
 *Set Tickets(Piano Étoile Series Vol.27~Vol.28 and Encore! Vol.4~Vol.5)
  Apr.25.2015 / 10am-

<SAFMembers> May.23.2015 / 10am-
 *Set Tickets(Piano Étoile Series Vol.27~Vol.28 and Encore! Vol.4~Vol.5)
  Apr.18.2015 / 10am-

 

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