Yundi recital, piano
17 JUNE 2016, 8.30 PM
In 2000, at just eighteen, Chinese pianist Yundi won the prestigious International Chopin Piano Competition, Warsaw, and embarked on a brilliant career.
A major star in China, he also enjoys widespread popularity in the West, and performs equally impressively in recitals as he does with the world's finest orchestras, such as the Berliner Philharmoniker, the Wiener Philharmoniker, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra of Amsterdam, the London Symphony Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra, and the Marinsky Orchestra.
His passionate temperament and the introspective side to his character make Yundi the ideal performer of Frédéric Chopin's music. A guest of the Fondation Louis Vuitton as part of the Bentu exhibition, he will star as a soloist in this concert of works by his favourite composer.
The 24 Preludes, a series of subtle musical miniatures, will be followed by the four Ballades, described by Baudelaire as "melodies as light and passionate as a splendid bird swooping over the horrors of an abyss".
Length: 90 minutes without intermission (short break)
24 Preludes, Op. 28 (40 min)
1. in C major. Agitato
2. in A minor. Lento
3. in G major. Vivace
4. in E minor. Largo
5. in D major. Molto allegro
6. in B minor. Lento assai
7. in A major. Andantino
8. in F-sharp minor. Molto agitato
9. in E major. Largo
10. in C-sharp minor. Molto allegro
11. in B major. Vivace
12. in G-sharp minor. Presto
13. in F-sharp major. Lento
14. in E-flat minor. Allegro
15. in D-flat major. Sostenuto "The raindrop"
16. in B-flat minor. Presto con fuoco
17. in A-flat major. Allegretto
18. in F minor. Molto allegro
19. in E-flat major. Vivace
20. in C minor. Largo
21. in B-flat major. Cantabile
22. in G minor. Molto agitato
23. in F major. Moderato
24. in D minor. Allegro appassionato
------ Short break (5/10 min) ------
Ballade No. 1, Op. 23
Ballade No. 2, Op. 38
Ballade No. 3 , Op. 47
Ballade No. 4, Op. 52
Fondation Member ticket: 35€
Yundi was propelled onto the international stage when he won first prize at the 14th International Chopin Piano Competition at the age of 18, becoming the youngest and first Chinese winner in the history of the renowned competition. Since then, he has been regarded as a leading exponent of Chopin’s music. In recognition of his contribution to Polish culture, the Government of Poland presented a Gold Medal for Merit to Culture ‘Gloria Artis’ to Yundi in 2010. He maintains a strong connection with Poland and will sit on the jury of the 17th Chopin Competition in 2015.
On his regular recital tours, Yundi performs at such prestigious venues as Carnegie Hall (New York), Royal Festival Hall (London), Berliner Philharmoniker, Alte Oper (Frankfurt), Herkulessaal (Munich), Gewandhaus Leipzig, Salle Pleyel (Paris), Moscow International House of Music, Mariinsky Concert Hall (St Petersburg), National Centre for the Performing Arts (Beijing), Seoul Arts Center and Suntory Hall (Tokyo). Orchestras and conductors with whom he has collaborated include the Berliner Philharmoniker and Seiji Ozawa, Leipzig Gewandhausorchester and Riccardo Chailly, Mahler Chamber Orchestra and Daniel Harding, Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra and Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Philharmonia Orchestra and Andrew Davis, Mariinsky Orchestra and Valery Gergiev, and the Israel Philharmonic and Gustavo Dudamel. He has also performed with the Vienna Philharmonic, National Symphony Orchestra (Washington), Philadelphia Orchestra, Toronto Symphony Orchestra and NHK Symphony Orchestra.
Yundi is a household name and has a huge following in his native China. In the 2013/14 season, he embarked on a 35-city recital tour of the country, bringing classical music to provincial capitals as well as second- and third-tier cities. In addition to his activities on the concert platform, Yundi is also passionate about humanitarian work. He is an ambassador of the Red Cross Society of China and Environmental and City Image Ambassador for his hometown of Chongqing. Equally committed to promoting classical music in an educational context, Yundi is one of the pioneers of musical education in China, where his success story has inspired millions of children learning the piano. He has also given masterclasses at the Royal College of Music, University of Cambridge and Qinghua University in Beijing. In Autumn 2012, he was appointed Associate Dean and Professor of the Piano Faculty at the Sichuan Conservatory of Music, the youngest member of the faculty to achieve the status.
Yundi has an extensive discography on Deutsche Grammophon and EMI Classics. In 2007, he became the first Chinese pianist to record live with the Berliner Philharmoniker and Seiji Ozawa. This Deutsche Grammophon disc met with rave reviews and was named ‘Editor’s Choice’ by Gramophone magazine. For EMI Classics, he recorded the complete Chopin Nocturnes, Live in Beijing and Red Piano, an album celebrating piano music written by Chinese composers. Yundi’s most recent CD on Deutsche Grammophon pairs Beethoven’s ‘Emperor’ concerto (Berliner Philharmoniker / Daniel Harding) with Schumann’s Fantasie in C; this follows a disc of three of Beethoven’s piano sonatas. Future recording plans include further discs of Chopin.
Born in Chongqing, Yundi began piano studies at age seven. He subsequently trained at the Shenzhen Arts School and Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien Hannover.