October 30, 2000

Russian Pianist to Showcase an All-Brahms Performance Nov. 11

"Lilya Zilberstein owns the kind of fingers from which music pours naturally … They

are powerful fingers, accurate beyond the dreams of most of her keyboard kin."

--Toronto Star


MIDDLEBURY, Vt. -- Concertgoers are in for a treat when Russian pianist Lilya Zilberstein returns to Vermont for an evening of Brahms at 8 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 11, at the concert hall in the Middlebury College Center for the Arts on South Main Street (Route 30). Zilberstein’s program will feature Brahms’ Eight Piano Pieces, opus 76; Variations on an Original Theme; Variations on a Hungarian Folk Song; Three Intermezzi, opus 117; and the Paganini Variations, opus 35.

An accomplished recitalist, Zilberstein plays regularly throughout the United States, Europe, and Japan. Her recent schedule included appearances in New York, San Francisco, Rotterdam, Prague, Florence, Berlin, and Vienna. A Deutsche Grammophon recording artist, she was the 1987 winner of the Busoni International Piano Competition. More recently, she was the 1998 prizewinner of the Accademia Musicale Chigiana in Siena, Italy.

Zilberstein also enjoys solo engagements alongside orchestras. Some of her acclaimed efforts have been with the Berlin Philharmonic, the London Symphony, the Danish National Radio Orchestra, the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Montreal Symphony.

Just one year ago, Zilberstein visited Vermont with the Carl Nielsen Orchestra when it made an appearance as a joint presentation by the Lane Series and Burlington’s Flynn Theatre. She joined the orchestra for a piece by Prokofiev. Of her efforts that night, one reviewer wrote, "Zilberstein is the possessor of one of the most formidable techniques that has come to Burlington. Her ability to shade dynamics was incredible. Her playing of legato passages was marvelous, like a shower of rose petals on the audience. Her handling of the more percussive sections clearly reminded us that the piano is, first and foremost, a percussive instrument."

Zilberstein has cultivated a trademark forceful command of her instrument, especially in handling works of the Russian masters. The New York Times has called her "an insightful interpreter with a powerful technique."

A native of Moscow, Zilberstein graduated from the Gnessin Pedagogical Institute and has claimed numerous Russian piano competitions. She has lived in Hamburg for the past 10 years with her husband and two sons.

Zilberstein’s performance is sponsored by the Middlebury College Concert Series.

Reservations for the concert are required. Tickets are $10 for general admission and $8 for senior citizens. A pre-performance dinner will be held at 6:30 p.m. at Rehearsals Cafe in the Center for the Arts. For tickets or dinner reservations, call the college box office 802-443-6433.

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