The Complete Chopin Sonatas Meet Ligeti Etudes
June 29th 2020
Chopin’s three Piano Sonatas are set in relief by two of György Ligeti’s Piano Etudes, with pianist Julian Jacobson.
The highly charged Romanticism of Chopin and the intricately sculpted abstract modernism of Ligeti might seem to have little in common.
Jacobson proposes that they share a richly creative and exploratory use of the piano and an unparalleled mastery of keyboard texture.
He presents Chopin’s two mature sonatas – the heroic, stormy opus 35, with the funeral march at its heart, and the serenely beautiful opus 58, written towards the end of the composer’s brief life, alongside his early student work, the opus 4 Sonata.
Chopin’s first piano sonata, written at the age of sixteen, has been almost totally overshadowed by his two great later sonatas.
Nevertheless, it is full of tantalising glimpses of Chopin’s mature style and already displays his genius as a pianist and writer for the piano.
These works are interspersed with two of Ligeti’s endlessly inventive Piano Etudes.
Jacobson himself gave the critically acclaimed first UK performance of Book One of the Etudes at Queen Elizabeth Hall in 1987. His recording for BBC Radio 3 was highly praised by the composer.
In recent years Jacobson has become widely admired as a performer of Beethoven, including his three celebrated ‘marathon’ performances of all 32 in a single day, and as Chairman of the Beethoven Piano Society of Europe.
In this recital he returns to his early love of Chopin as well as reliving his commitment to Ligeti’s Etudes.
More info: https://www.southbankcentre.co.uk/whats-on/128320-complete-chopin-sonatas-meet-ligeti-etudes-2020
Solo Piano Recital
Sunday 7th April 2019, 5pm
The Abbey Sutton Courtenay
The Abbey proudly presents Julian Jacobson in an intimate piano recital in the medieval Great Hall.
All details here
Bach: Prelude and Fugue in B flat major, “48” Book 2
Mozart: Adagio in B minor, K 540
Beethoven: Sonata in E flat op 31 no. 3, “Hunt”
Fauré: Impromptu no. 3 in A flat, op 34
Debussy: Images Book 2
1. Cloches à travers les feuilles
2. Et la lune descend sur le temple qui fut
3. Poissons d’or
Liszt: Valse oubliée no.1
Wagner-Liszt: Isoldens Liebestod
BPSE Lunchtime Series
Wednesday 3rd April 2019, 1pm
St. James’s Church, 197 Piccadilly, London W1J 9LL
Julian Jacobson (BPSE Chair) and Mariko Brown, piano duo
Eliza Safjan, soprano
Beethoven: Three Marches, Op.45 for piano duet
Beethoven: Ich denke Dein, WoO 74 for soprano and piano duet
Schubert: Heiß mich nicht reden, heiß mich schweigen
Schubert: Nur wer die Sehnsucht kennt
Schubert: So laßt mich scheinen, bis ich werde
Schubert: Kennst Du das Land
Brahms: Meine Liebe ist grün
Debussy: Marche écossaise, L.77 for piano duet
Virtuoso Violin Series – Bogdan Vacarescu (violin) and Julian Jacobson (piano)
Saturday March 23rd, 2019 at 7:30 PM
Trinity College Chapel, Cambridge
More details – https://www.concert-diary.com/mobile#concert?id=1324548096
Friday February 15, 7.30 pm
After a gap in 2018 while Julian was busy with his 70th birthday series, he is reviving his annual Valentine concert with a programme of much-loved Mozart masterpieces, a wonderful team of soloists and the youthful, brilliant Horton Chamber Orchestra.
Mozart: Piano Quartet in G minor K478
Mozart: Piano Concerto in C, K467 “Elvira Madigan”*
Debussy: Nocturne in D flat, L82** arr. for orchestra by Julian Jacobson.
Mozart: Sinfonia Concertante for Violin, Viola and Orchestra K364**
Three Premieres for Julian’s “American in Paris” transcription
November 11th 2018, 6 pm, Munich
Klavierwerkstatt GmbH Dorfstraße 39 / Hofgebäude 81247 Munich Telephone 089 – 74 68 92 34 Fax 089 – 74 66 58 48
Performing Beethoven’s ‘Emperor’ Concerto with the Xiamen Philharmonic Orchestra in China, June 2018
Bach: Prelude & Fugue in B flat BWV 890 (“48” Book 2)
Debussy: Images Book 2
Granados: The Maiden and the Nightingale (Goyescas no.4)
Albéniz: Triana (Iberia no.6)
Contemporary music from Italy and Russia, played by Henri Bonamy (piano)
Gershwin: An American in Paris, transcr. Julian Jacobson for piano four hands, with Henri Bonamy (German premiere)
November is a busy month for Julian. On November 11th he performs in Munich, Germany, the programme to include the German premiere of his virtuoso transcription for piano duet of Gershwin’s much-loved “An American in Paris” with Henri Bonamy as well as solo music by Bach, Debussy, Granados and Albéniz. A week later he returns to the Scots Kirk in Paris where he gave his 70th birthday concert on November 18 2017, this time with his regular duo partner Mariko Brown, giving the French premiere of “An American in Paris” in the city where he finished the transcription three years ago.
On the day after his Munich concert, November 12th, Julian is directing a festival devoted to the complete solo piano music of Leonard Bernstein in his centenary year, at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire. Some 20 students will perform the complete “Anniversaries”, the Piano Sonata, “Touches”, and the Four Sabras, and Julian will give an illustrated talk on Bernstein as Pianist. The day will finish with two of Julian’s students performing the brilliant two-piano transcription of the Symphonic Dances from West Side Story.
At the end of the month he returns to Taiwan and China. On December 1st he will make his second appearance as International Senior Artistic Advisory Consultant to the Xia Jing Shan Arts and Culture Foundation, followed by the Chinese premiere on December 7 of “An American in Paris” in Shenzhen with Julian’s former student Boya Yang.
The American in Paris transcription is at the final stages of proofreading and the published copy (Schott/Bardic) should be on sale very soon, joining Julian’s very successful transcription of Gershwin’s Second Rhapsody.
Saturday September 1st , 11.30 a.m. – 12.30 p.m.
Grange Park Methodist Church
Old Park Ridings
London N21 2EU (nearest station: Grange Park)
Bach Prelude & Fugue in B flat minor BWV 867 (“48” Book 1)
Beethoven Sonata in F sharp major op 78
Schubert Impromptu in C minor op 90 no 1
Debussy Prelude “La Puerta del Vino”
Debussy Images, Book 2
Chopin Nocturne in C sharp minor op 27 no. 1
Chopin Scherzo no.4 in E major
Also in September:
Sept 13/14: Julian continues his CD recordings of the complete Beethoven sonatas at Potton Hall. The latest instalment includes the great “Waldstein” Sonata and other two-movement sonatas: op 49 nos. 1 & 2, op 54, op 78, op 90. First volume, the three op 10 Sonatas, to be released soon!
June 30, 7 pm, All Saints Church, Oystermouth, Swansea Bay, SA3 4BZ
Beethoven Piano Concerto no. 5 “Emperor”
(Swansea Bay Symphony Orchestra, conductor Paul Lewis)
July 3, 7.30, Concert Hall of Xiamen University China:
Julian is invited for the third time to the Xiamen International Piano Festival
Haydn Sonata in C minor no.20
Schoenberg Six Little Pieces op 19
Beethoven Sonata op 53 “Waldstein”
Debussy Images Book 2
Rachmaninoff Four Preludes
Rachmaninoff Two Etudes-Tableaux
July 13-20: Cadenza International Summer School, Purcell School, London
Concerts and masterclasses
August 5-12: Sherborne Summer School, Piano Course and two recitals. Details on the website below
Three Beethoven Lecture-Recitals as part of the Birmingham International Piano Festival.
June 11 (“Tempest” Sonata), June 13 (Waldstein), June 14 (Appassionata).
CD Launch concert
Tuesday 30th January 7pm
City, University of London
St John Street
Programme to include:
Ferruccio Busoni Fantasia contrappuntistica (1910)
Claude Debussy Khamma (1912)
Works by Anthony Herschel Hill, Erik Satie and Alfredo Casella
Julian Jacobson & Mariko Brown play Busoni’s monumental Fantasia contrappuntistica and Debussy’s unusual and beautiful late ballet score Khamma, in the rarely-heard versions for two pianos.
New CD – available now.
BUSONI / ANTHONY HERSHEL HILL / SATIE / DEBUSSY / CASELLA / POULENC
Julian Jacobson & Mariko Brown Piano Duo. Somm £10.00
Please click here for a promotional video for the CD.
Julian Jacobsonʼs 70th birthday concert series 2017/18
After two very succesful concerts in October and November, Julian’s 70th birthday series at St John’s Smith Square London concludes with two final concerts on February 11 and March 11. For the last concert he is joined by his duo partner Mariko Brown for the public London premiere of his own virtuoso piano duet transcription of Gershwin’s great tone poem “An American in Paris” – complete with taxi horns!
More info about Julian Jacobson and Mariko Brown as a piano duo here: https://marikojulianpianoduo.com/
Four Sundays at St Johnʼs Smith Square, London, 3 pm
Masterpieces of Beethoven, Schubert and Prokofiev (the three ʻWar Trilogyʼ sonatas and Romeo and Juliet)
Dates and programmes:
1) October 22 2017
One of the great affirmations in musical history, Beethoven’s magnificent set of variations on the same theme as the finale of the later ‘Eroica’ Symphony was written within a few months of the composer’s despairing ‘Heiligenstadt’ Testament.
Proceeding via Schubert’s much more spontaneous and lyrical Impromptus, the programme culminates in Prokofiev’s savage, sardonic wartime Sonata No. 6 which, nonetheless, contains moments of repose, nostalgia and wit.
Beethoven “Eroica” Variations op 35
Schubert Four Impromptus D899
Prokofiev Sonata no. 6 in A op 82
2) November 26 2017
As one of Schubert’s most expansive and lyrical sonatas, and a work of unbounded joy, the Sonata in D surely deserves to be as well-known as the famous ‘Moonlight’ Sonata.
In later years Beethoven affected to dislike his sonata, yet he must have realised that its opening movement had touched new ground in musical expression. The second of Prokofiev’s ‘War’ Sonatas is the most celebrated and concise, ending with a 7/8 perpetual motion movement that sweeps all before it.
Beethoven “Moonlight” Sonata
Schubert Sonata in D D850
Prokofiev Sonata no. 7 in B flat op 83
3) February 11 2018
Written on the cusp of the 19th century, Beethoven’s “Pathétique” proves him to be the man for the new age, with its urgently dramatic opening and glorious, already “Romantic” slow movement.
Schubert’s great A major Sonata, “heavenly long” (Schumann), is perhaps his most accomplished. Prokofiev’s 8th Sonata counters the violence of the 6th and 7th with something much more Olympian, almost Shakespearian in its depth and humanity.
Beethoven “Pathétique” Sonata
Schubert Sonata in A D959
Prokofiev Sonata no. 8 in B flat op 84
4) March 11 2018
Schubert’s “Wanderer” Fantasy, based on a song of that name, is an uncharacteristically virtuoso work and also, in its combining of four movements into a single span of music, an extremely influential one. The torrential passions of Beethoven’s “Appassionata” have hardly been superseded to this day. And to finish in a lighter vein, four numbers from Prokofiev’s ever-popular “Romeo and Juliet” and my own transcription of Gershwin’s colourful “An American in Paris”.
Beethoven “Appassionata” Sonata
Prokofiev Romeo and Juliet: Ten Pieces op 75
Gershwin “An American in Paris” transcribed for piano with four hands by Julian Jacobson.
Performed by Julian Jacobson and Mariko Brown. More information on this piano duo here: www.marikojulianpianoduo.com
April 28th 2018
Beethoven Emperor Concerto
St James Piccadilly
Sat May 26th 2018
Brahms 2nd Concerto, Brandenburg Sinfonia, conductor Peter Robinson
St James Sussex Gardens
London W2 3UD
August 3rd and 5th 2018
Altaussee Chamber Music Festival
with Priya Mitchell (violin)
3rd August 2018
Bach French Suite no.5 in G, BWV 816 (solo piano)
Brahms Sonata no 1 in G for Violin and Piano, op 78
Beethoven “Kreutzer” Sonata
5th August 2018
Brahms Violin Sonata no. 2 in A op 100
Beethoven Sonata no 10 in G for Violin and Piano, op 96
Brahms Sonata no 3 for Violin and Piano in D minor, op 108