Renowned pianist Jonathan Biss opens 2017-18 Artist Series

Internationally acclaimed pianist Jonathan Biss shares his talent, passion and intellectual curiosity with classical music Friday, Oct. 6 at 8 p.m. in the opening concert of Lawrence University’s 2017-18 Artist Series.

Tickets for the performance in the Lawrence Memorial Chapel, at $25-30 for adults, $20-25 for seniors, $18-20 for students, are available through the Lawrence Box Office, 920-832-6749.

Jonathan BissBorn into a family of musicians in Bloomington, Ind., Biss has nearly two decades on the concert stage. He has forged relationships with the New York Philharmonic; the Philadelphia, Cleveland and Philharmonia orchestras; the Boston, Chicago and Swedish Radio symphony orchestras; and the Leipzig Gewandhaus, Budapest Festival and Royal Concertgebouw orchestras, among others.

Piano teacher Catherine Kautsky, George and Marjorie Olsen Chandler Professor of Music, hailed Biss as “one of the most interesting leading pianists of the younger generation.”

“His programming is unfailingly original,” said Kautsky. “He grapples with the most challenging repertoire and his musical thinking, in both words and performance, is sophisticated, articulate and personal.

“Getting him to Appleton is a coup,” she added. “We’re in the company of the world’s leading musical capitals.”

Earlier this year, Biss performed the world premiere of “City Stanzas,” a concerto by British composer Sally Beamish, as the second installment in the “Beethoven/5” project. For the project, the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra co-commissioned five composers to write new piano concertos, each inspired by one of Beethoven’s.

Biss’ virtuosity has been recognized with numerous honors, including the 2005 Leonard Bernstein Award at Germany’s Schleswig-Holstein Festival, Lincoln Center’s Martin E. Segal Award, which honors young artists of exceptional accomplishment and the biannual Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award, which rewards musical excellence.

His 11-album discography includes a Schumann recital album which received a Diapason d’Or de l’année award and a recital album of Beethoven Piano Sonatas, Op. 13, 28, 90 and 109 which won the Edison Award, an annual Dutch music prize presented in honor of outstanding achievements in the music industry.

Biss served as artist-in-residence on American Public Media’s Performance Today and was the first American chosen to participate in the BBC’s New Generation Artist program.

In addition to his concert, Biss will conduct a free master class on Thursday Oct. 5 at 6 p.m. in Harper Hall.

About Lawrence University
Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a nationally recognized conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. It was selected for inclusion in the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Engaged learning, the development of multiple interests and community outreach are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,500 students from nearly every state and more than 50 countries.