Middlebury

Pianist Steven Osborne Performs an All-Ravel Program March 2

July 11, 2014

Award-Winning Scottish Artist Is Known for Unique Approach and Dazzling Repertoire

steven_osborne-fields_hires

Middlebury, VT—Classical pianist Steven Osborne returns to Middlebury College’s Performing Arts Series on Friday, March 2, 2012 to perform a stunning concert of solo piano works by French composer Maurice Ravel. Born in Scotland, Osborne is one of Britain’s foremost musicians.

Osborne is renowned worldwide for his unique approach to a wide variety of repertoire, from the mainstream classical works of Mozart, Beethoven, and Brahms to the rarefied worlds of Messiaen, Tippett, and Britten. He has won numerous awards and prizes, including the 2009 Gramophone Award for his recording of Britten’s works for piano and orchestra, as well as first prize at both the Naumburg International Competition (New York) and Clara Haskil Competition.

steven_osborne-profile-preferredOsborne last performed in Middlebury in spring 2005, when he gave a well-received recital on the Mahaney Center for the Arts’ Concert Hall stage. The Performing Arts Series has sought an opportunity to bring him back ever since.

The Middlebury concert program will be composed entirely of works from Osborne’s latest Hyperion Records release, “Ravel: the complete solo piano music.” This recording was nominated for a 2011 Gramophone Award, and won the Pizzicato "Supersonic" Award, as well as Disc of the Month and Critic’s Choice awards from BBC Music Magazine and Gramophone respectively. On his blog, Osborne revealed, “Nothing Ravel wrote is easy, even the pieces which sound it; he doesn’t seem to know what feels comfortable at the piano. Yet he had an astonishing instinct for the coloristic possibilities of the piano, and while it may not be the most grateful music to learn, it is supremely effective and satisfying to play.” The program features eleven Ravel works, including “Sonatine,” “La Valse,” and the notoriously challenging “Gaspard de la nuit.”

Osborne’s recitals of carefully crafted programs have earned him public and critical acclaim. “Scottish pianist Steven Osborne just seems to get better every time he gives a concert,” proclaimed The Scotsman. The Daily Telegraph remarked about his concert appearance, “You could have heard a pin drop. Steven Osborne’s power over the hall was absolute…the atmosphere was spellbound.”

steven_osborne_chair1He has performed in many of the world’s prestigious venues, including the Konzerthaus Vienna, Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Philharmonie Berlin, Palais des Beaux Arts Brussels, Suntory Hall Tokyo, Washington’s Kennedy Center, and Carnegie Hall. He has performed with many of the world’s most prestigious orchestras, including recent visits to the Yomiuri Nippon Symphony, Berlin Symphony, Deutsches Sinfonieorchester Berlin, Finnish Radio Symphony, Sydney Symphony, Hong Kong Philharmonic, and the Dallas Symphony Orchestra. In the UK, he works regularly with the London Philharmonic, City of Birmingham Symphony, Philharmonia and BBC Philharmonic Orchestras. His concerts are frequently broadcast by the BBC and he performs every year at Wigmore Hall in London.

Osborne’s regular chamber music partners include Alban Gerhardt and Dietrich Henschel, as well as two Middlebury favorites and Performing Arts Series artists: violinist Alina Ibragimova and pianist Paul Lewis.

The concert by Steven Osborne will take place on Friday, March 2, 2012, at 8:00 p.m., at Middlebury College’s Mahaney Center for the Arts, in the Concert Hall. Tickets are $25 for the general public; $20 for Middlebury College faculty, staff, alumni, emeriti, and other ID card holders; and $6 for Middlebury College students. For more information, call (802) 443-MIDD (6433) or go to http://go.middlebury.edu/arts.

 

Top photo: Ben Evalovega