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November 2014
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Piano

Emerging from “Cultural Black-out”

Evacuating the paintings of London's National Gallery

Imagine the walls of the National Gallery stripped bare, a city of 8.6 million people shrouded in darkness; theaters, cinemas, museums – all shuttered. As England entered the Second World War, authorities quickly took measures to remove cultural assets, while reducing the potential for civilian casualties by strictly enforcing black-outs and quashing the city’s night life

Champion Plays Ravinia

DenisMatsuevCollage

He calls Chicago Blackhawks goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin “a big friend of mine.” His heroes are Vladimir Horowitz and star hockey center Sergei Fedorov. Russian pianist Denis Matsuev, who has “epic technique” according to the Boston Globe, is not shy about talking sports. In a 2009 Impromptu, he told WFMT that as a youth in Siberia, he could hardly be kept indoors. He played either soccer or ice hockey “about seven hours a day. Music was second.” Speaking with a gentle Russian growl, he laughs

Ravinia’s Back! Hear Concerts Every Monday

KahaneTrio

Monday at 8:00 pm Each summer, the Monday night series Live from WFMT takes a vacation so that WFMT can bring you concerts from the Ravinia Festival. Monday’s broadcast features pianist Jeffrey Kahane, violinist Joseph Swensen, and cellist Carter Brey. Program Mozart: Piano Trio in G, K. 496 Schumann: Piano Trio in d, Op. 63 more…

Free Recital Downtown, Chamber Concert at Ravinia

Israeli pianist Alon Goldstein

Israeli pianist Alon Goldstein returns to Chicago this week for two performances. At lunchtime on Wednesday, he is the featured artist at the annual Al Booth celebration at the Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concerts. On Wednesday evening, he joins artists from the Steans Institute to perform Mozart and Brahms.

Goldstein appeared at the Ravinia Festival last summer alongside Leon Fleischer

Ryan Opera Center Sings Puccini, Bizet (video)

LauraJNai

Lyric Opera of Chicago dispatched two of its rising stars to join a worldwide chorus of music-lovers celebrating music on June 21.

June 21 is the summer solstice, the longest day of the year – and for the past 4 years, a day of music in Chicago. Locally the festival is known as Make Music Chicago, though the summer solstice tradition of taking instruments to the streets started in Paris as the Fête de la Musique

Video from Make Music Chicago

Chicago Symphony Principal Trumpet Christopher Martin

Make Music Chicago 2014 organized dozens of performances at Daley Plaza and across the Chicago area on Saturday. The citywide festival joined communities around the world in celebration of music on June 21, the summer solstice. One of the organizers, Kuang-Hao Huang, announced at 10:00 am, “Fiji is 17 hours into their day of music.

Grant Park Soloist: “Ice pack, please”

Natasha Paremski, c. Andrea Joynt

The Grant Park Music Festival welcomes Russian-American pianist Natasha Paremski for Wednesday’s season opener. She joins Carlos Kalmar and the Grant Park Orchestra for a piece she jokes about on her Facebook page: “deliriously fast

Rudolf Buchbinder with the CSO

Pianist Rudolf Buchbinder

At the age of 5, Austrian pianist Rudolf Buchbinder set the record for being the youngest student ever admitted to the Vienna Musik Hochschule. Early in his career, he recorded all the Beethoven sonatas and piano concertos; recently he recorded them all again—the concertos with the Vienna Philharmonic

Pianos and Emanuel Ax in Public Spaces

This week some lucky museum visitors got a little bonus. Emanuel Ax toured the Pianos in Public Spaces placed around town by the Chicago Symphony in honor of the Keys to the City Festival. Listen to what some in the audience had to say. Visit the CSO’s website to find a piano near you. click more…

Pianos on Parade

I can’t tell you how many tourists said to me, “What an amazing thing: pianos just sitting out where people can play on them.” And that’s the general idea of Pianos in Public Spaces. People of every level are finding their inner Horowitz (or should we say “Ax”) and just sitting down to play. The more…