The 25th Verbier Festival finishes with the "flying fingers" of acclaimed pianist Yuja Wang, who performs two of Prokofiev’s most beloved piano concertos for this all-Prokofiev program with Italian maestro Gianandrea Noseda. The program also features The Love for Three Oranges Orchestral Suite Op. 33bis, based on music from Prokofiev's operetta of the same name.
A great lover of Prokofiev's œuvre, Yuja Wang has “a certain affinity for Prokofiev because he isn’t well-behaved [...] he is sarcastic and caustic in a rebellious way that I appreciate.” (Euronews) In this concert, she employs her breathtaking technique in performances of both his Fifth and Third Piano Concertos. Prokofiev composed many concertos during his lifetime, and once wrote to his colleague Aram Khachaturian explaining the process: "it is very difficult to write a concerto, and it is necessary to be inventive. I advise you to write down all of the ideas that come to you. Don’t wait for everything to mature. Write down individual passages, the interesting bits, not necessarily in the right order. Later you can use these 'bricks' to build the whole."
Prokofiev's Piano Concerto No. 3 reigns supreme as the most popular of his five piano concertos. Although the work's Chicago premiere was met with a cool welcome—as one musician put it, “we barely understand it, but we support it nonetheless”— the European public's reaction was so enthusiastic that the composer was asked to record the piece with the London Symphony Orchestra soon afterward!
Yuja Wang appears courtesy of Deutsche Grammophon.
Photos: Yuja Wang © Ian Douglas. Gianandrea Noseda © Steve J. Sherman
Verbier Festival 2011
Verbier Festival 2010