British Artist Returns to Perform on the New Piano He Helped to Select
Middlebury, VT—British pianist Paul Lewis will return to the Mahaney Center for the Arts Concert Hall on April 4 to play a program including Bach chorales, Beethoven’s “Moonlight” Sonata, and Mussorgsky’s “Pictures at an Exhibition.” A Middlebury audience favorite, Lewis is internationally recognized as one of the leading pianists of his generation. Lewis will perform on Middlebury’s new Steinway concert grand piano, which he helped select last October at Steinway’s Astoria, NY factory.
Lewis’ recent cycles of core piano works by Beethoven and Schubert—Middlebury is among just a handful of venues worldwide to present both cycles—received unanimous critical and public acclaim worldwide, and consolidated his reputation as one of the world’s foremost interpreters of the central European classical repertoire. Responding to Lewis’ recent Schubert CD release, Gramophonemagazine wrote, “He has developed into arguably the finest Schubert interpreter of his generation.” Anthony Tommasini of the New York Times added, “There are many prized recordings of the Beethoven sonatas from past masters and current artists. But if I had to recommend a single complete set, I would suggest Mr. Lewis’s distinguished recordings.”
Lewis’s multi-award winning discography for the Harmonia Mundi label includes the complete Beethoven piano sonatas, concertos, and the Diabelli Variations; Liszt’s B minor Sonata and other late works; and all of Schubert’s major piano works from the last six years of his life, as well as three song cycles recorded with tenor Mark Padmore. Future recording plans include the Brahms D minor piano concerto with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra and Daniel Harding, and solo works by Mussorgsky and Schumann.
Lewis’s numerous awards have included the Royal Philharmonic Society’s Instrumentalist of the Year award, two Edison awards, three Gramophone awards, the Diapason D’or de l’Annee, the Preis Der Deutschen Schallplattenkritik, the Premio Internazionale Accademia Musicale Chigiana, and the South Bank Show Classical Music award. In the summer of 2010, Lewis became the first pianist in the history of the famed BBC Proms classical music festival to play all five Beethoven Piano Concertos in a single season; the complete cycle was broadcast on BBC television. He is also a regular guest at many other prestigious festivals and venues, including London’s Wigmore Hall and Royal Festival Hall, Alice Tully and Carnegie Hall in New York, the Konzerthaus in Vienna, the Theatre des Champs Elysées in Paris, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Oji Hall in Tokyo, and the Sydney Opera House.
Lewis studied with Joan Havill at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, before going on to study privately with renowned Austrian pianist Alfred Brendel. Along with his wife, the Norwegian cellist Bjørg Lewis, he is artistic director of Midsummer Music, an annual chamber music festival held in Buckinghamshire, UK.
The concert by Paul Lewis will take place on Friday, April 4, 2014 at 8:00 P.M. in the Concert Hall of the Kevin P. Mahaney ’84 Center for the Arts, on the campus of Middlebury College. The Mahaney Center is located at 72 Porter Field Road in Middlebury, just off Route 30 south. Free parking is available. 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, or to purchase tickets, call (802) 443-MIDD (6433) or go to http://www.middlebury.edu/arts.
Top right: photo Eric Manas
Top center: photo Aaron Kimball
Bottom right: photo Jack Liebeck