Murray Perahia, who stepped in for Maurizio Pollini on April 4, has just pulled out.

Too much work, he told them. Might impede his recovery from injury.
Any pianists who are free that night in New York, contact the address below.

LATE EXTRA: He’s cancelled Chicago, too. Details here

Jonathan Biss

Jonathan Biss is deputising.

Date: March 29, 2011 | Contact: Public Relations | Tel: 212-903-9750 |


Carnegie Hall today announced that pianist Murray Perahia must regrettably cancel his solo recital in Stern Auditorium/Perelman Stage scheduled for Monday, April 4. Since last week’s Carnegie Hall announcement, Mr. Perahia has re-considered and now feels it is not advisable to add additional concerts to his busy schedule, so as not to impair his long-term recovery from an earlier injury. This performance will not be rescheduled.

Ticket holders who purchased tickets for this performance through CarnegieCharge or will receive automatic refunds. Those who purchased tickets with cash should return them to the Carnegie Hall Box Office in person to receive a refund. Ticket holders with questions may contact CarnegieCharge at 212-247-7800.

***Please note that this update supersedes previous press materials related to this concert.***

Bank of America is the Proud Season Sponsor of Carnegie Hall

Arts organisations across England will learn between 0700 and 0930 tomorrow what they can expect to receive over the next three years. 

At 1000 the ACE will announce its decisions at a press conference, having prepared the softer parts of the media to expect the toughest call since Sophie’s Choice and the most revolutionary overhaul in arts funding since the fall of Rome.

Insiders who have seen the documents say it is neither. Not by a long chalk.
The decisions have been made under five bureaucratic criteria (published in November 2010) among which artistic excellence is often bottom of the pile. The others include access, resilient and innovative management, social diversity, children and young people.
As an artistic exercise, the process is a mountain of paper clips. It’s a bucket of equivocations, a basket made of wet straw, a sheaf of deskbound compromises. 

The phrase to look for in the small print is ‘balancing the portfolio‘. By these weaselly three words the ACE will cover its own back, ensuring that no interest group is left unfunded, no matter how poor its contribution. Many organisations will do much better than they deserve for socio-political reasons that have nothing to do with art. Many of the most deserving will be consequently deprived. The process lacks intellectual credibility and artistic validity.
And some of the decisions, I hear, were taken on the flimsiest grounds.
I shall be dissecting early leaks here from 0800 tomorrow. Meantime, remember that phrase – ‘balancing the portfolio‘. It mocks the Keynesian principles of excellence and nurture by which England has achieved 65 years of artistic renaissance.

Expansionist Sony Classical has launched a dawn raid on bank-owned EMI to snatch one of its crown jewels, the Norwegian pianist, Leif Ove Andsnes.

It’s a blow for the former British label, which had nurtured the artist over two decades, and a coup for Sony to cash in just as Andsnes is winning world acclaim.

He will open with a Beethoven concerto cycle, recorded over three years with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra. The only cloud on his new relationship is the question of whether Sony will allow him to record esoteric nordic repertoire. EMI bravely indulged all such whims.

Press release below:

Sony Classical is pleased to announce an exclusive agreement with the celebrated Norwegian pianist Leif Ove Andsnes to record the full cycle of Beethoven’s piano concertos with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra. Born in 1970, Andsnes has been performing internationally since he was nineteen years old and appears regularly in the world’s leading concert halls with the most renowned orchestras. His combination of superb technique and depth of interpretation have earned him great acclaim, and theNew York Times has described him as “a pianist of magisterial elegance, power and insight.”

“Beethoven – A Journey” will see Leif Ove Andsnes in partnership with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra for a three-year recording and performing commitment commencing in 2012 with the release of Pianos Concertos Nos. 1 & 3, followed by Concertos Nos. 2 & 4 in 2013 and the Fifth Piano Concerto and Choral Fantasy in 2014 on Sony Classical. Each performance will be recorded live in concert in Prague with Andsnes directing from the piano. The project culminates in the 2014-15 season when Andsnes and the Mahler Chamber Orchestra will re-unite for major residencies in North America, Europe and Asia performing the complete Beethoven cycle.

Leif Ove Andsnes says “I feel privileged to be joining the Sony Classical roster and look a lot forward to embarking on this personal journey to perform and record Beethoven’s complete piano concertos together with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra. Beethoven’s music is for me both the most human and deeply spiritual music there is, and I can’t wait to see where the next years will lead me in working on these magnificent pieces. I would like to thank both the Mahler Chamber Orchestra and Sony Classical for sharing such equal energy and enthusiasm for our common Beethoven journey.”

Bogdan Roscic, President of Sony Classical says: “We are very happy to start our relationship with Leif Ove with this massive project. It is literally a journey of three years and it will not just deliver the outstanding recordings for which he is known. Together with partners from other fields we want to create a unique tribute to Beethoven’s genius and explore why he holds such a special place in the pantheon of composers. It is a huge undertaking and we are proud to be a part of it.”

In the 2010-11 season Andsnes is pianist-in-residence with both the Bergen and Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra and has toured with the London Philharmonic under Vladimir Jurowski and the Concertgebouw Orchestra under Mariss Jansons, performing Brahms’ Second Piano Concerto. This Spring he embarks on a major recital tour performing two sonatas by Beethoven and works by Brahms and Schoenberg with performances in Scandinavia (Copenhagen and Bergen), the States (Boston, Chicago and New York’s Carnegie Hall) as well as in central Europe (including Rome, St Petersburg, Berlin, Madrid, Vienna, Hamburg and Geneva).

In addition to concert performances with the world’s great orchestras, Andsnes excels as an interpreter of chamber music and pieces for solo piano, and can already look back on a long and distinguished career in recording, which ranges from Mozart and Schubert to Grieg and Rachmaninov and also includes a wide array of contemporary music. He has received numerous musical awards for his performances and recordings, among them the Royal Philharmonic Society’s Instrumentalist Award, five Gramophone and two Classical Brit Awards in the UK, the Preis der Deutschen Schallplattenkritik and the Echo Klassik Award in Germany, Diapason d’O
r and Choc de Classica in Fr
ance and the Record Geijutsu Academy Award in Japan.

When EMI floated the idea of selling Abbey Road last year, it was an attempt to test the market for state preservation. Still, there’s no denying that work has dried up in sound-proofed rooms – especially those large enough to hold a symphony orchestra – and today one of Britain’s most productive classical venues has been put up for sale.

Potton Hall, near Aldeburgh, has won awards for the quality of its sound in recordings by the likes of Vladimir Ashkenazy, the Belcea Quartet, Jean-Efflam Bavouzet, Elin Manahan Thomas and James Rhodes. It also functions as a concert hall and centre for creative courses. It is owned by Jeremy Hayes, an experienced producer, and his wife Helen Hayes who runs the live events.
Property Details - Westleton, Westleton, Suffolk, IP17 3EF - Savills Estate Agents

But the couple have found the going tough and have decided to concetrate on family priorities. They have put the property up for sale here for £1.75 million.  
Property Details - Westleton, Westleton, Suffolk, IP17 3EF - Savills Estate Agents

Helen hopes they will find a buyer who will continue the hall’s work as a classical studio and performing centre. In present economic conditions that may not be easy, despite the idyllic setting and truly extraordinary sound conditions.
The hall will remain open for classical bookings until the day of sale.
Any good label need a new home?
Property Details - Westleton, Westleton, Suffolk, IP17 3EF - Savills Estate Agents

The international Welsh tenor, infinitely agreeable and versatile, has died at 72.

Robert Tear was an integral member of the London scene and in high demand at the musical summits, working with most major conductors and appearing on no fewer than 250 records.
He was Simon Rattle’s tenor of choice for Mahler and everyone’s for Britten, owning the role of Quint in Turn of the Screw and delivering indelible performances of the War Requiem. Bearded and bald, he was unmissable on a crowded stage.
My fondest memories of him are in the songs of Ralph Vaughan Williams, which he performed as instinctually and upliftingly as a deer skipping on the crest of a hill. May he rest in peace.

LATE EXTRA: The Royal Opera House Covent Garden is dedicating tonight’s Fidelio to his memory.
And here’s Bob with Julian Bream on youtube.