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Alessio Bax

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Alessio Bax performs at Wigmore Hall with Daishin Kashimoto

Alessio Bax performs at Wigmore Hall with Daishin Kashimoto

Pianist Alessio Bax and violinist Daishin Kashimoto will be performing together on Saturday 22 July, 1pm at Wigmore Hall, London During the month of July the duo has toured throughout Taiwan, Korea and Japan where they have performed a series of concerts, concluding their tour upcoming Saturday as part of the Avex Recital Series They ...

Alessio Bax debuts with Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra

Alessio Bax debuts with Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra

Alessio Bax is stepping in for a suddenly indisposed Hélène Grimaud, to perform Brahms’s Piano Concerto No 2 under the baton of Sir Andrew Davis during the Orchestra’s Brahms Fest in two concerts on 14 and 15 April in Cincinnati’s Taft Theatre In a double jump-in, the planned conductor Louis Langrée, has also been replaced at ...

Biography

Italian pianist Alessio Bax creates ‘a ravishing listening experience’ (Gramophone) with his lyrical playing, insightful interpretations, and dazzling technique. First Prize winner at the Leeds and Hamamatsu International Piano Competitions, he is the newly-appointed Artistic Director of Incontri in Terra di Siena Festival in addition to his concert appearances.

Alessio has appeared as a soloist with over a hundred orchestras, including the London Philharmonic and Royal Philharmonic Orchestras, City of Birmingham Symphony, Southbank Sinfonia, Dallas and Houston Symphonies, Minnesota Orchestra, Grant Park Festival Orchestra, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional de México, Filarmónica de Buenos Aires, NHK Symphony and St. Petersburg Philharmonic. His conductor collaborations include Yuri Temirkanov, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Sir Simon Rattle, Andrew Litton, Marin Alsop, Eugene Tzigane, Hans Graf and Jaap van Zweden.

In recital, Alessio has appeared on the most prestigious stages around the world, including those of New York, Rome, Milan, Bilbao, Madrid, Paris, London, Tel Aviv, Tokyo, Seoul, Hong Kong, Mexico City and Washington, DC. He is a frequent guest at music festivals, including recent appearances at the Great Lakes Chamber Music Festival, Seattle Chamber Music Festival, Music@Menlo, Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival, Aldeburgh and Bath festivals, Verbier Festival in Switzerland, Risør Festival in Norway, Ruhr Klavier-Festival and Beethovenfest Bonn in Germany.

On the chamber music platform, Alessio collaborates with high-profile artists such as Joshua Bell, with whom he has given more than 35 concerts across the world, Daishin Kashimoto, Emanuel Ax, Sol Gabetta, Paul Watkins, Jörg Widmann, Nicholas Phan and Emerson String Quartet. After being awarded the Andrew Wolf Chamber Music Award and Lincoln Center’s Martin E. Segal Award in 2013, Alessio regularly returns to the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center (CMS). This season, together with the CMS, he will go on tour in the US culminating with a performance at New York’s Alice Tully Hall. Later in the spring, he participates in CMS performances at Alice Tully Hall and Wigmore Hall.

Concerto highlights of 16/17 season include a return to the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, performances with Symphony Silicon Valley, Williamsburg Symphony, the Norwegian Radio Orchestra and Orquesta Nacional de España. Alessio performs three times at the Wigmore Hall this spring, including his solo recital debut with a program of Schubert, Scriabin and Ravel; gives solo recitals in Spain, Italy and California; tours Japan with Daishin Kashimoto and performs with his wife, pianist Lucille Chung, in Guatemala and the US.

Bax’s acclaimed discography for Signum Classics includes a solo album of Mussorgsky and Scriabin; a guest appearance on Chung’s disc of Poulenc piano works; Lullabies for Mila; Beethoven’s Hammerklavier and Moonlight Sonatas (a Gramophone “Editor’s Choice”); Bax & Chung (Stravinsky, Brahms, and Piazzolla); Alessio Bax plays Mozart (Piano Concertos K. 491 and K. 595); Alessio Bax plays Brahms (a Gramophone “Critics’ Choice”); Bach Transcribed; and Rachmaninov: Preludes & Melodies (an American Record Guide “Critics’ Choice 2011”). Recorded for Warner Classics, his Baroque Reflections album was also a Gramophone “Editor’s Choice.”

At age 14, Bax graduated with top honors from the Conservatory of Bari, his hometown in Italy, and after further studies in Europe, he moved to the US in 1994. A Steinway artist, he resides in New York City with pianist Lucille Chung and their daughter, Mila.

Reviews

(…) pianist Bax was impressive. This relatively young artist eschewed overly dramatic gestures of the crowd-pleasing sort and channeled all his considerable energy into the music, demonstrating complete mastery of the demanding writing.
- Cleveland.com
Bax is a true storyteller, using the piano as his voice, and Gabetta reminds us through these selections why the cello was created — as an instrument of raw emotion to reflect our own capacity for feeling. This concert was a wonderful showcase of two talented artists.
- The Independent
Throughout the evening, pianist Bax proved an inspired partner for Bell. The two ably prodded each other, especially in the night's sonatas. In the Brahms, particularly, Bax's account of the keyboard part was notable for its tonal warmth and excellent textural balance.
- Telegram
Bax found plenty of poetry in the work [Beethoven’s Piano Sonata No 14 “Moonlight”] and capped it with quite a stormy finale. (…) Pictures at an Exhibition is a virtuoso piece in its piano form, full of many moods including some spooky passages. Virtuosity and variety were strongly present in Bax’s interpretation, which ended with a grand Great Gate of Kiev.
- Star Telegram
Bax wisely eschewed extensive rubato in the first movement [Beethoven’s Piano Sonata No 14 “Moonlight”], marked Adagio sostenuto, instead creating a dignified, elegant sustained line. He attacked the thorny third movement, marked Presto agitato, at a breakneck clip, but Bax is a musician with technique up to the task.
- Theater Jones
Bax gave it [Beethoven’s Piano Sonata No. 31, No. 1 in A major, Op. 110] a sensitive and insightful performance. (…)The majestic fugal section in the last movement was played with great clarity and the entrance of the subject in octaves in the bottom of the instrument was an awe-inspiring sound. It was fascinating to hear him boldly step forward in this solo appearance and then return to the collaborator a moment later.
- Theater Jones
Bax’s bracing prestidigitation was evident in the strongly projected playing of the declarative solo that begins the work [Barber’s Piano Concerto], and even more in the explosive later cadenza and his consistently fast and accurate passagework. Yet the soloist was also able to relax into the more lyrical sections, with some affecting phrasing in the Canto middle movement. (…) Bax racheted up the power and velocity in the virtuosic final section, making the sparks fly in a combustible coda.
- Chicago Classical Review
Bax had the measure of this knuckle-busting virtuoso piece [Barber’s Piano Concerto]. His winning account combined youthful bravura in the outer movements with an innate feel for the ebb and flow of melody in the central Canzone: Not even wailing fire trucks on nearby Michigan Avenue could mar his concentration. His fingerwork was incisive without degenerating into pounding, and the torrent of pianistic energy he unleashed in the explosive, toccata-like finale kicked up tremendous excitement. Let's have him back.
- Chicago Tribune
Closing the program was Mr. Bax’s tastefully enhanced interpretation of “La Valse” by Ravel: less mordant than richly opulent, rising from Stygian gloom into a gaudy efflorescence, with glissandos that whistled as if no touch were involved.
- New York Times

Discography

Lullabies for Mila
Released February 2016 on Signum Records

Alessio Bax dedicates an album to his daughter Mila, compiling works from his past Signum albums including performances with Lucille Chung and Southbank Sinfonia as well as a new recording of the Nocturne from Griegs Lyric Pieces. Alessio begins the album with a touching dedication: This album is not only a carefully curated playlist of soothing classics to calm a baby and perhaps make him or her fall asleep quicker. It is also a gift from parents to their children, with the hope that they will share music with their loved ones, not just to entertain them but also to enrich their lives. It is a gift from me to other parents, so that at the end of what might have been a challenging and difficult day, they might put their feet up and enjoy a seamless stream of great music spanning three centuries. And it is a little gift from me to my daughter that I hope will enable me, one day, to say thank you for everything she has done and will continue to do to for us and for this world.