Bartók concertos on new SFS recording & live in Europe

Aimard’s first Bartók concerto recording – made with Pierre Boulez, Stefanovich and the London Symphony Orchestra – was recognized with a Grammy nomination; to quote The Guardian, “In piano music like this he has no equal.” Now, Pentatone releases the complete Bartók concerto cycle he recorded over the last two years with the San Francisco Symphony and Music Director Esa-Pekka Salonen. Due for digital release on September 15 and physical release during that same month, the new album captures Aimard’s interpretations of the three concertos he considers “among the most demanding in the repertoire, due to their combination of instrumental challenge and musical significance.” As he puts it: “Their intensity is incandescent.”

In live performance, the Hungarian composer’s Third Piano Concerto figures prominently in Aimard’s fall programming. He plays it with two Hungarian orchestras, first with the Franz Liszt Chamber Orchestra in Romania and Slovenia, at dates in Bucharest (Sep 8), Sibiu (Sep 9) and Maribor (Nov 10), and then with András Keller and the Concerto Budapest Symphony on a tour of the UK and Ireland, in Guildford (Sep 13), London (Sep 14), Cheltenham (Sep 15), Edinburgh (Sep 17) and Dublin (Sep 19). Aimard also revisits Bartók’s Second Piano Concerto with the Hamburg Symphony Orchestra and Cambreling next spring (May 5).

In addition, the coming season sees Aimard perform Schoenberg’s Piano Concerto with the Berlin Radio Symphony (March 9); Nono’s Como una ola de fuerza y luz with Milan’s La Scala Orchestra (Jan 22–25); and concertos by Ravel with the Czech Philharmonic (Dec 13–15) and State Orchestra of Lower Saxony (March 17 & 18).