Visiting Artist Masterclass with Jonathan Biss, pianist

Recital Salon, Squires | Music

February 4, 2020 at 7:30pm

 “blazing, nimble, fleet of finger and dangerous.” - Fiona Maddocks, The Guardian

 “Filled with mysterious silences, Biss unreels the music like a prayer to the universe,” -  NPR Music

“Jonathan Biss will surely take his place among the greats if he continues on this exalted plane.” - BBC Music Magazine

Observe as pianist Jonathan Biss of the Curtis Symphony Orchestra coaches the next generation of musicians—music students in the School of Performing Arts—during this open master class. Biss serves as the Neubauer Family Chair in piano studies at the Curtis Institute of Music.

For more than a decade, Biss has fully immersed himself in the music of Beethoven, exploring the composer’s works and musical thought through a wide variety of projects, several of which culminate in 2019-20. Mr. Biss’s recital repertoire this season is almost exclusively focused on the Beethoven piano sonatas, with complete, seven-program sonata cycles at London’s Wigmore Hall, Berkeley’s Hertz Hall, the new McKnight Center for the Performing Arts at Oklahoma State University, and Wells Cathedral School in Somerset, U.K. In recent seasons he has performed complete cycles at the Aspen and Ravinia festivals and in recitals presented by the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. In addition to these complete cycles, he performs sonata recitals and mini-cycles around the U.S. this season, including at the Perelman Theater in Philadelphia, 92nd Street Y in New York, The Phillips Collection in Washington, DC, and Meany Hall in Seattle, as well as abroad in Rome, Budapest, Sydney, and Melbourne.

Mr. Biss represents the third generation in a family of professional musicians that includes his grandmother Raya Garbousova, one of the first well-known female cellists (for whom Samuel Barber composed his Cello Concerto), and his parents, violinist Miriam Fried and violist/violinist Paul Biss. Growing up surrounded by music, Mr. Biss began his piano studies at age six, and his first musical collaborations were with his mother and father

Mr. Biss has been recognized with numerous honors, including the Leonard Bernstein Award presented at the 2005 Schleswig-Holstein Festival, Wolf Trap’s Shouse Debut Artist Award, the Andrew Wolf Memorial Chamber Music Award, Lincoln Center’s Martin E. Segal Award, an Avery Fisher Career Grant, the 2003 Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award, and the 2002 Gilmore Young Artist Award. His albums for EMI won the Diapason d’Or de l’Année and Edison awards. He was an artist-in-residence on American Public Media’s Performance Today and was the first American chosen to participate in the BBC’s New Generation Artist program.

Don't miss Jonathan Biss performing with the Curtis Sympony Orchestra

Wednesday, Feb. 5 at 7:30 p.m., Anne and Ellen Fife Theatre, Moss Arts Center

Hampton Inn Blacksburg/ChristiansburgMain Street Inn, and Marriott Courtyard Blacksburg are the official lodging sponsors for our visiting artists.


Free; register through the Moss Arts Center box office

To make a gift to the School of Performing Arts visit the link below. Designate your gift to the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences. Once you select the College a secondary field will open and you may then designate the School of Performing Arts.

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