Westminster Choir College of Rider University will welcome renowned pianist Jeremy Denk for a two-day residency February 9 and 10. Denk will present a recital on Saturday, February 9 at 7:30 p.m. in Bristol Chapel. He will lead a master class with Westminster Choir College piano students on Sunday, February 10 at 2 p.m. in Williamson Hall. Admission is free for both events.
The recital will include Beethoven’s Sonata No. 32 in C minor, which he performed on his latest recording, “Jeremy Denk: Ligeti/Beethoven,” named by NPR as one of 2012’s top classical albums. His program will also include Sonata, Sz. 80 by Bela Bartók and Prelude and Fugue in B minor by Johann Sebastian Bach. He will also perform several works by Franz Liszt, including Prelude on “Weinen, Klagen, Sorgen, Zagen,” “Vidi in terra angelici costume” from Sonetti del Petrarca, “Après une lecture du Dante, fantasia quasi sonat” from Années de pèlerinage, and Isolden's Liebestod.
Jeremy Denk has steadily built a reputation as an unusual and compelling artist, with a broad and thought-provoking repertoire. He has appeared as soloist with many major orchestras, including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Philadelphia Orchestra, and the symphony orchestras of Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, and London. He regularly gives recitals in New York, Washington, Boston, Philadelphia, and around the United States. Denk is known for his witty and personal music writing, which has appeared in the New Yorker, the front page of the New York Times Book Review, Newsweek, and on the website of NPR Music.
The New York Times has written about him, “Mr. Denk, clearly, is a pianist you want to hear no matter what he performs, in whatever combination – both for his penetrating intellectual engagement with the music and for the generosity of his playing.”
Denk has a long-standing attachment to the music of American visionary Charles Ives, and his recording of Ives’s two Piano Sonatas was selected for many “best of the year” lists. Last season, he was invited by Michael Tilson Thomas to appear as a soloist in the San Francisco Symphony’s “American Mavericks” festival, and he recorded Henry Cowell’s Piano Concerto with the orchestra.
An avid chamber musician, the pianist has most recently spent considerable time touring with violinist Joshua Bell, and French Impressions; their recording of Franck, Saint-Saëns, and Ravel; released on the Sony Classical label, won the 2012 Echo-Klassik award. Denk also regularly collaborates with cellist Steven Isserlis. He has appeared at numerous festivals, including the Italian and American Spoleto Festivals, and the Santa Fe Chamber Music, Verbier, Tanglewood, Aspen, and “Mostly Mozart” Festivals, besides spending many summers at Vermont’s Marlboro Music School.