The late Olivier Messiaen is another of the modernist masters with whom Aimard enjoyed especially close personal and professional ties. As a former student of Yvonne Loriod, Messiaen’s wife, the pianist has championed his countryman’s music throughout his career, proving himself “a peerless interpreter of Messiaen’s music” (Boston Globe). In the U.S. next spring, Aimard joins the Cincinnati Symphony and Matthias Pintscher for multimedia performances of Des canyons aux étoiles (“From the Canyons to the Stars”). Inspired by Messiaen’s visits to Utah’s Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park, the French composer’s epic, otherworldly masterpiece will be accompanied by immersive and evocative video art (March 1 & 2).
Later next spring, Aimard revisits two of Messiaen’s orchestral works with European orchestras, performing Oiseaux exotiques with Cristian M?celaru and the Orchestre national de France (March 30) and the Turangalîla-Symphony – as heard on the pianist’s 2001 recording with the Berlin Philharmonic – with Myung-Whun Chung and the Staatskapelle Dresden (June 9–11). In both Aimard’s upcoming duo recitals with Tamara Stefanovich, in Zurich (Oct 1) and Madrid (April 15), their program features Messiaen’s Visions de l’Amen, as heard on the duo’s 2022 Pentatone release, Visions. In St. Pölten, Austria, the pianist reprises Messiaen’s Catalogue d’oiseaux in solo recital (May 1), following the success of his 2018 Pentatone recording of the work, which was one of the Sunday Times’s Best Albums of the Year, a Gramophone Editor’s Choice and a German Music Critics’ Award winner, while one track from the album was selected as one of the New York Times’s “25 Best Classical Music Tracks of 2018.”