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Leif Ove Andsnes - NOSPR

Leif Ove AndsnesPiano

photo by Helge Hansen

The New York Times calls Leif Ove Andsnes “a pianist of magisterial elegance, power, and insight,” and The Wall Street Journal names him “one of the most gifted musicians of his generation.” With his commanding technique and searching interpretations, the celebrated Norwegian pianist has won acclaim worldwide, playing concertos and recitals in the world’s leading concert halls and with its foremost orchestras, while building an esteemed and extensive discography.
An avid chamber musician, he is the founding director of the Rosendal Chamber Music Festival, was co-artistic director of the Risør Chamber Music Festival for nearly two decades, and served as music director of California’s Ojai Music Festival in 2012. He was inducted into the Gramophone Hall of Fame in July 2013 and received honorary doctorates from New York’s Juilliard School and the Norway’s University of Bergen in 2016 and 2017, respectively.
Leif Ove Andsnes is currently partnering with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra on Mozart Momentum 1785/1786. A major multi-season project exploring one of the most creative and seminal periods of the composer’s career, this sees the pianist lead the ensemble from the keyboard in accounts of Mozart’s Piano Concertos Nos. 20–24 at key European venues, as well as recording them for Sony Classical. When it was released in May 2021, the project’s first album, MM/1785, was named “Record of the Week” by BBC Radio 3 and “Recording of the Month” by Gramophone magazine, which pronounced it “a remarkable achievement by all concerned.” Mozart Momentum 1785/1786 marks Leif Ove Andsnes’s second artistic partnership with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, following the success of The Beethoven Journey. An epic four-season focus on the composer’s music for piano and orchestra, this took the pianist to 108 cities in 27 countries for more than 230 live performances and is perhaps his most ambitious achievement to date. He led the Mahler Chamber Orchestra from the keyboard in complete Beethoven concerto cycles at high-profile residencies in Bonn, Hamburg, Lucerne, Vienna, Paris, New York, Shanghai, Tokyo, Bodø, and London, besides collaborating with such leading international ensembles as the Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, London Philharmonic, and Munich Philharmonic. The project was chronicled in the documentary Concerto – A Beethoven Journey (2016), and the artist’s partnership with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra has captured on the hit Sony Classical three-volume series The Beethoven Journey. The first volume was named “iTunes’ Best Instrumental Album of 2012” and awarded Belgium’s Prix Caecilia, the second recognized with BBC Music’s coveted “2015 Recording of the Year Award,” and the complete series chosen as one of the “Best of 2014” by The New York Times.
Leif Ove Andsnes now records exclusively for Sony Classical. His previous discography comprises more than 30 discs for EMI Classics – solo, chamber, and concerto releases, many of them bestsellers – spanning repertoire from the time of Bach to the present day. He has been nominated for eleven Grammys and awarded many international prizes, including six Gramophone Awards. His recordings of the music of his compatriot Edvard Grieg have been especially celebrated: The New York Times named his 2004 recording of Grieg’s Piano Concerto with Mariss Jansons and the Berlin Philharmonic a “Best CD of the Year,” the Penguin Guide awarded it a coveted Rosette, and both that album and his disc of Grieg’s Lyric Pieces won Gramophone Awards. His recording of Mozart’s Piano Concertos Nos. 9 and 18 was another New York Times “Best of the Year” and Penguin Guide Rosette honoree. He won yet another Gramophone Award for Rachmaninov’s Piano Concertos Nos. 1 and 2 with Antonio Pappano and the Berlin Philharmonic. A series of recordings of Schubert’s late sonatas, paired with lieder sung by Ian Bostridge, inspired lavish praise, as did the pianist’s world-premiere recordings of Marc-André Dalbavie’s Piano Concerto and Bent Sørensen’s The Shadows of Silence, both of which were written for him. As well as Chopin: Ballades & Nocturnes and the Billboard best-selling Sibelius, both recorded for Sony, his recent releases include Stravinsky: The Rite of Spring and other works for two pianos four hands, recorded with Marc-André Hamelin for Hyperion, and Schumann: Liederkreis & Kernerlieder, recorded with Matthias Goerne for Harmonia Mundi, both of which were nominated for Grammy Awards.
Leif Ove Andsnes has received Norway’s distinguished honor, Commander of the Royal Norwegian Order of St. Olav, and in 2007, he received the prestigious Peer Gynt Prize, awarded by members of parliament to honor prominent Norwegians for their achievements in politics, sports, and culture. In 20042005, he became the youngest musician (and first Scandinavian) to curate Carnegie Hall’s Perspectives series, and in 20152016 he was the subject of the London Symphony Orchestra’s Artist Portrait Series. Having been 20102011 Pianist-in-Residence of the Berlin Philharmonic, he went on to serve as 20172018 Artist-in-Residence of the New York Philharmonic and 20192020 Artist-in-Residence of Sweden’s Gothenburg Symphony. He is the recipient of the Royal Philharmonic Society Instrumentalist Award and the Gilmore Artist Award, and, saluting his many achievements, Vanity Fair named him one of the “Best of the Best” in 2005.
Leif Ove Andsnes was born in Karmøy, Norway in 1970, and studied at the Bergen Music Conservatory under the renowned Czech professor Jiří Hlinka. He has also received invaluable advice from the Belgian piano teacher Jacques de Tiège, who, like Hlinka, greatly influenced his style and philosophy of playing. He is an Artistic Adviser at the city’s Prof. Jiří Hlinka Piano Academy, where he gives a masterclass to participating students each year.


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