Paul Lewis | Symphony Center | Classical | Chicago Reader
This is a past event.
When: Sun., March 3, 3 p.m. 2013
Price: $19-$77
Lately British pianist Paul Lewis has devoted his energies to the piano music of Franz Schubert, specifically solo works from between 1822 and 1828, when the composer died at age 31. Last year he released a terrific two-CD set for Harmonia Mundi that focuses on some of Schubert’s most ebullient, passionate, and celebrated pieces from this period, including the Wanderer Fantasy and the Impromptus in G Major, and at this performance—part of a season-long international tour—he’ll play the final three of the composer’s 21 sonatas. Lewis released a recording of numbers 20 and 21 in 2003, and both stand in stark contrast to the Schubert pieces he issued last fall. The composer’s health was failing as he struggled to complete these sonatas, and awareness of his impending death seems woven into their dark fabric: his usual structural rigor gives way at times to a kind of somber, cycling drift, with certain melodic ideas repeated numbly, or even to the total disappearance of discernible melody. As Lewis told the New York Times in October, “With Schubert you end up with more questions, a sense of something hanging in the air.” Next season Lewis turns his attention to Mussorgsky, Liszt, and Reubke, so this will probably be your last chance for a long while to hear his masterful interpretations of Schubert. —Peter Margasak



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