Location: Main Theatre
Schubert, Sonata in A Major, D. 959;
Beethoven, Hammerklavier Sonata, Opus 106
Jonathan Biss is a world-renowned pianist who shares his deep musical and intellectual curiosity with classical music lovers in the concert hall and beyond. Biss represents the third generation in a family of professional musicians that includes his grandmother Raya Garbousova, one of the first well-known female cellists (for whom Samuel Barber composed his Cello Concerto), and his parents, violinist Miriam Fried and violist/violinist Paul Biss. Growing up surrounded by music, Biss began his piano studies at age six, and his first musical collaborations were with his mother and father. He studied at Indiana University with Evelyne Brancart and at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia with Leon Fleisher. A member of the faculty of his alma mater the Curtis Institute of Music since 2010, Biss led the first massive open online course (MOOC) offered by a classical music conservatory, Exploring Beethoven's Piano Sonatas, which has reached more than 100,000 people in more than 160 countries. This season Biss launches his latest Beethoven project, Beethoven/5, for which the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra is commissioning five composers to write new piano concertos, each inspired by one of Beethoven's five piano concertos. Biss has embarked on a nine-year, nine-disc recording cycle of Beethoven’s complete piano sonatas, and he reaches the halfway point in early 2016, when he releases the fifth volume.