Piano genius and star conductor set to awe with NZSO

 Photo by Marco Borggreve

Photo by Marco Borggreve

Britain’s greatest living pianist, a fast-rising conducting star and the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra will join forces to present a titan of classical music in May.
 
Virtuoso Stephen Hough, declared one of the 25 gretest pianists of all time (Classic FM) will perform Johannes Brahms’ mighty Piano Concerto No. 2 with the NZSO under meteoric guest conductor, Gustavo Gimeno.
 
The massive 45-minute concerto is a monument of the repertoire, showcasing Brahms at the height of his powers. Stephen Hough has earned rave international reviews for his risk-taking approach to the piece.
 
Stephen Hough is prodigiously talented and a compelling public personality. He was named among 20 Living Polymaths by The Economist and is a composer, poet, painter and a respected columnist for the Daily Telegraph. With more than 50 recordings to his credit, he has written music for orchestra, choir, chamber ensemble and solo piano. He is a Governor of the Royal Ballet Companies and in 2014 received a CBE for services to music.
 
Meanwhile NZSO guest conductor, Spaniard Gustavo Gimeno, has taken the classical music world by storm since leaving his post as Principal Percussionist of the world-famous Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and taking up the baton.
 
His 2014 debut was a sensation. Amsterdam newspaper Het Parool declared: “Yesterday, a true conductor was born in the Concertgebouw.” Legendary conductor Mariss Jansons said of him: “I immediately felt he was born to be a conductor.”
 
This major new talent is ideal to lead the NZSO in a 20th anniversary performance of New Zealander Gareth Farr’s exhilarating From the Depths Sound the Great Sea Gongs Part 1. First commissioned by the NZSO to mark the Orchestra’s 50th anniversary, it features three percussionists playing a line of 10 roto-toms, plus an additional bass drummer. The work references Balinese, Cook Islands and American marching drum styles and it shot a young Gareth Farr to fame.
 
The NZSO will end the performance with Dmitri Shostakovich’s dazzling Symphony No 1. Completed when he was just 19 years old, it confirmed him as a major musical force.
 
NZSO: Stephen Hough plays Brahms is presented in association with Dimension Data. An open talk by New Zealand concert pianist Stephen de Pledge will take place 45 minutes prior to the performances in Wellington, Dunedin, Christchurch and Auckland.
 
NZSO: Stephen Hough plays Brahms
In association with Dimension Data
Brahms poster vvSM
GUSTAVO GIMENO Conductor
STEPHEN HOUGH Piano
 
BRAHMS Piano Concerto No. 2 in B-flat major
FARR From the Depths Sound the Great Sea Gongs Part 1
SHOSTAKOVICH Symphony No. 1 in F minor
 
WELLINGTON | Michael Fowler Centre | Friday 13 May | 6.30pm
Ticketek | 0800 842 538 | ticketek.co.nz
 
DUNEDIN | Town Hall | Wednesday 18 May | 7pm
Ticketmaster | 0800 111 999 | ticketmaster.co.nz
 
CHRISTCHURCH | Horncastle Arena | Thursday 19 May | 7pm
Ticketek | 0800 842 538 | ticketek.co.nz
 
AUCKLAND | Town Hall | Saturday 21 May | 7.30pm
Ticketmaster | 0800 111 999 | ticketmaster.co.nz