Igor Levit, Piano
Bold, brilliant, and outspoken, Igor Levit is the pianist of the moment. "Perhaps the most formidable virtuoso of the younger generation" (The New Yorker), Levit is assertive in speaking his mind musically and politically. Winning the prestigious Gilmore Artist Award in 2018 magnified his profile, and his intimate album Life has reaped critical praise as a non-traditional program and meditation on grief.
Levit's first album was a recording of Beethoven's late sonatas, a move which Gramophone declared "a debut of true significance." In his second Duke Performances recital, Levit offers four early and late Beethoven sonatas. The Sonatas No. 9, 10, and 11 display Beethoven's mastery of classicism, but distinctly carry his charged voice. The monumental "Hammerklavier" took nearly a year to compose, and gives the pianist the challenge to elucidate the thorny connections between disparate musical ideas - a task perfectly suited for Levit.
Beethoven: Piano Sonata No. 9 in E Major, op. 14, no. 1
Beethoven: Piano Sonata No. 10 in G Major, op. 14, no. 2
Beethoven: Piano Sonata No. 11 in B-flat Major, op. 22
Beethoven: Piano Sonata No. 29 in B-flat Major, op. 106 ("Hammerklavier")