Sicklist: Late pianist switch at New York Philharmonic

Sicklist: Late pianist switch at New York Philharmonic


norman lebrecht

May 21, 2015

Jonathan Biss has pulled out of tonight’s Brahms piano concerto, and the rest of the weekend, ‘due to an arm injury suffered in a recent accident.’

He is replaced by Kirill Gerstein. The concerts mark conductor Susanna Mälkki’s debut with the NY Phil.

kirill gerstein

So here’s what happened.

Jonathan broke his arm last month. It has healed quite fast and he was able to play Mozart with the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra last weekend, but not the Brahms D minor concerto in New York. As he puts it: ‘the Brahms D minor Concerto is nearly 50 minutes long and makes unusual demands in terms of power and stamina. My doctors and I felt that it would be safer to give my arm a bit more time before tackling such a mammoth work. The recovery is going very well, and I’m closer to full strength with every passing day!’



  • Olaugh Turchev says:

    I bet the meal will taste the same…

  • PhilOrchFan says:

    The replacement was announced at least 2 weeks ago.

  • Stuard Young says:

    If Kirill Gerstein plays the Brahms with the intensity and commitment he brought to Shostakovich 2 in Philadelphia with Yannick Nezet-Seguin a few months ago, the NYP audience is in for a treat. They are very different pieces, of course. What was impressive with Gerstein’s performance was hid insight, finding a depth and substance not usually explored in that Shostakovich, and displaying the stunning virtuosity to carry it off. I wish I could hear it myself!

  • NYMike says:

    It was indeed a treat!