Kirill Gerstein

Piano

Artists Management in association with Enticott Music Management 

Biography

“This is the kind of serious, intelligent and virtuosic music-making that keeps classical music alive.” – The Observer

Pianist Kirill Gerstein’s heritage combines the traditions of Russian, American and Central European music-making with an insatiable curiosity. These qualities and the relationships that he has developed with orchestras, conductors, instrumentalists, singers and composers, have led him to explore a huge spectrum of repertoire both new and old. From Bach to Adès, Gerstein’s playing is distinguished by a ferocious technique and discerning intelligence, matched with an energetic, imaginative musical presence that places him at the top of his profession.

Born in the former Soviet Union, Gerstein is an American citizen based in Berlin. His career is similarly international, with solo and concerto engagements taking him from Europe to the United States, China and Australia. Highlights of the 2021-22 season include performances of Kurtág, Beethoven, Strauss and Rachmaninov with Royal Concertgebouw and NDR Elbphilharmonie under Alan Gilbert; Mozart with Camerata Salzburg and Andrew Manze; Schumann with Chicago Symphony and Karina Canellakis; Ravel and Schönberg with the Bayerischer Rundfunk Symphonieorchester and François-Xavier Roth; Tchaikovsky’s First Piano Concerto in the urtext version with the Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra and Sebastian Weigle; both of Ravel’s Piano Concertos with City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra; Brahms’s First and Second Piano Concertos with Helsinki Philharmonic; and all five Beethoven Piano Concertos over two nights with the Grand Rapids Symphony. In recital, Gerstein will be heard at London’s Wigmore Hall; with his student Mao Fujita on tour in Japan; with Garrick Ohlsson on tour across America; and at Budapest’s Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music and the Kölner Philharmonie with his close colleagues the Hagen Quartet.

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Reviews

“the soloist Kirill Gerstein found a gentle silvery tone, and in the yearning melody of the first movement, he anticipated the beat by a fraction to seize its heart-fluttering quality.” (Schumann Piano Concerto with BBC Symphony Orchestra and Semyon Bychkov at BBC Proms 2021)

Ivan Hewett

The Telegraph

“The real highlight of the night, however, was the Schumann Piano Concerto that separated overture and symphony. Perhaps best known for muscular, virtuosic works, the pianist Kirill Gerstein rippled through the music with quicksilver grace, practically dancing up and down the keyboard… Gerstein’s impetuous encore — a fiendish Busoni transcription of a Bach chorale — was, in a word, breathtaking.” (Schumann Piano Concerto with BBC Symphony Orchestra and Semyon Bychkov at BBC Proms 2021)

Neil Fisher

The Times ****

“How often is it that a piano disc comes along consisting entirely of new music as technically exhilarating in its modern way as any disc of Chopin or Liszt? There is life in the virtuoso concert pianist yet. This collection of pieces by Thomas Adès includes works for solo piano, for two pianos, and for piano and orchestra. The pianist who is common to all is Kirill Gerstein…. Gerstein is a virtuoso and his brilliance pays dividends here.”

Financial Times (June 2020)

“Kirill Gerstein now belongs to the class of the most renowned classical pianists thanks to the idiosyncratic sound worlds he creates and his profoundly universal understanding of music”

Süddeutsche Zeitung

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