[ Concerts Faculty ]

Emanuel Ax plays Schubert in Feb. 23 recital

February 3, 2011

“His pianism is always thoughtful, lyrical, lustrous.”
– Washington Post

Music lovers all over the world celebrated Franz Schubert’s birthday on January 31. On Wednesday, February 23, music lovers in Connecticut can celebrate again when the renowned pianist Emanuel Ax gives an all-Schubert recital presented by the Yale School of Music. The event, which is part of the Horowitz Piano Series, will take place at 8 pm in Morse Recital Hall in Sprague Hall (470 College Street, New Haven).

The recital will open with Schubert’s Impromptus, Op. 142, a group of four pieces that Schumann once accused of being a sonata in disguise. Ax will then play the Sonata in A major, Op. 120, D. 664, a sunny and relatively youthful work known as the “little” sonata to distinguish it from another that Schubert wrote in the same key.

Ax will contrast this early work against the masterful Sonata in B-flat major, D. 960, which closes the program. The last piano sonata Schubert wrote, it was only published ten years after his death and was long neglected before being widely recognized as a major piece of the piano repertoire.

The pianist recently gave a series of three recitals at Lincoln Center focused on the music of Schubert. “One of Ax’s great strengths as a performer,” writes the San Francisco Chronicle, “is his ability to blend tenderness and muscle in a single amalgam.” Writes David Patrick Stearns of the Philadelphia Inquirer, “The more he increases tension, the more intently you listen – and perceive the profundity.”

Tickets range from $18 to $28, $10 for students. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit music.yale.edu or contact the Yale School of Music concert office at 203 432-4158.

About Emanuel Ax

Born in Lvov, Poland, Emanuel Ax moved to Winnipeg, Canada, with his family when he was a young boy. He studied at the Juilliard School and Columbia University, capturing public attention in 1974 when he won the first Arthur Rubinstein International Piano Competition in Tel Aviv. In 1975 he won the Michaels Award of Young Concert Artists, followed four years later by the coveted Avery Fisher Prize. Highlights of the current season include return visits to the orchestras of  Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, Atlanta, and Toronto as well as a number of recitals. Recent tours include performances in Asia with the New York Philharmonic and European tours with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe under James Conlon and the Pittsburgh Symphony with Manfred Honeck. Mr. Ax has been an exclusive Sony Classical recording artist since 1987. He has received Grammy Awards for the second and third volumes of Haydn’s piano sonatas and has also made a series of Grammy-winning recordings with Yo-Yo Ma of the Beethoven and Brahms cello sonatas. Mr. Ax is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and holds honorary doctorates of music from Yale and Columbia Universities.