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Konstantin LIfschitz Makes Verbier Festival Premiere

July 27, 2009 | By Kathy Geisler
Director
July 27, 2009 - Verbier, Switzerland

Konstantin Lifschitz made his Verbier Festival debut in the annual concert of La Nuits des Pianistes. Performing in a piano quartet arrangment of Bizet’s Carmen Fantasy by Mack Wilberg, the piano quartet consisted of Konstantin Lifschitz (piano I-1), Alessio Bax (piano I-2), Simon Trpceski (piano II-1) and Julien Quentin (piano II-2). The complete performance plus an encore can be viewed on Medici.tv as part of the 2009 Verbier Festival Video-On-Demand programming.

Born in Russia in 1976, Konstantin Lifschitz was five years old when he was accepted into the preparatory class at the Gnessin School of Music in Moscow where he was taught by one of Russia’s most famous piano teachers, Tatyana Zelikman.

In 1989, at the age of thirteen, he presented a landmark recital in the Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatory. The capacity crowd responded with overwhelming enthusiasm and the event established him as a major artist, ready to take his place alongside the elite of legendary Russian pianists. The following year, a grant from the Russian Culture Foundation enabled him to fulfill a series of concert engagements in Paris, Munich, Milan and other European music centers.

Konstantin Lifschitz completed his studies at the Gnessin School of Music in 1994 with a performance of Bach’s Goldberg Variations. The concert was recorded by the Japanese record label Denon, and upon the release of the album, the critic Edward Rothstein of The New York Times wrote that it was "the most powerful pianistic interpretation since Gould." In 1995 Lifschitz received an Echo Klassik Award as “European Young Artist of the Year” on the strength of this recording. In 1996, the Goldberg Variations recording was nominated for a Grammy Award.­­­ Konstantin Lifschitz performs in virtually every cultural capital in Europe, the United States, Israel, Australia, Russia, China and Japan. Among the many eminent orchestras with which he has appeared are the New York Philharmonic (under Mstislav Rostropovich), the Chicago Symphony, the San Francisco Symphony, the Academy of St-Martin’s-in-the-Fields (under Sir Neville Mariner), the Moscow Philharmonic (under Yuri Simonov), the New Amsterdam Sinfonietta, the Danish National Radio Symphony Orchestra (under Christopher Hogwood), the Berlin Symphony Orchestra, and the Beethoven Orchestra of Bonn (under Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau).

In 2003 he became a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Music in London, which followed his being made an Associate two years earlier by The Committee of Royal Musical Institutions. Konstantin Lifschitz is dedicated to performing chamber music with his colleagues and peers. His collaborators include the violinists Maxim Vengerov, Gidon Kremer and Leila Josefowicz, and the cellists Mstislav Rostropovich, Misha Maisky and Lynn Harrell. He has a vast repertoire of hundreds of pieces, including works for solo piano, chamber music and orchestral concertos, and has more than 20 albums to his credit. He is celebrated for his exquisite musical sensibility and nuanced playing.

Hailed as a genius, a marvel, a phenomenon and a polymath, Konstantin Lifschitz has been described as brilliant, exceptional, extraordinary, impressive, intense, passionate, remarkable, revelatory, spiritual and unforgettable.

“Konstantin Lifschitz - keyboard phenom, ought to be a star...Lifschitz [is] ready to become the next big thing.” —Richard Scheinin, San Jose Mercury News

“To say that Mr. Lifschitz made his playing look easy would not be quite accurate. What he offered was a performance of such poetry that the question of whether executing it was difficult hardly came to mind.” —Anne Midgette, The New York Times

contact: Kathy Geisler kathy (at) freshdigitalproduce.com

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