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Press Release


BEMF presents superstar fortepianist Kristian Bezuidenhout in a recital of works by Haydn and Beethoven — October 28 in Harvard Square

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ARTIST: Kristian Bezuidenhout, fortepiano
WHEN: Friday, October 28, 2016 at 8pm
First Church in Cambridge, Congregational, 11 Garden Street, Cambridge, MA
PROGRAM:  Music of Haydn and Beethoven

Ludwig van Beethoven: Rondo No. 1 in C major, Op. 51
Beethoven: Rondo No. 2 in G major, Op. 51
Beethoven: Sonata in D major, Op. 10 No. 3
Franz Joseph Haydn: Variations in F minor, Hob.XVII:6
Beethoven: Sonata No. 8 in C minor, Op. 13, “Pathétique”
TICKETS: Tickets are priced at $20, $39, $51, and $70 each, and can be purchased at and 617-661-1812; a $5 discount for students, seniors, and groups is available by calling 617-661-1812. Subscription discounts are available with the purchase of three or more programs on the 2016–2017 Season.

Fortepianist Kristian Bezuidenhout has emerged as one of Early Music’s new generation of superstars, with a well-earned reputation for performances bursting with virtuosity, charm, and imagination. A particular favorite of Boston audiences for his past collaborations with the Boston Early Music Festival, the Handel and Haydn Society, and Boston Baroque, he returns to BEMF in a solo recital of music by Haydn and Beethoven. The program opens with Beethoven’s engaging and virtuosic Rondos No. 1 and No. 2, Op. 51, followed by the striking expressiveness of his Sonata in D major, Op. 10, No. 3, which moves from sparkling energy to heart-wrenching melancholy. The second half features Haydn’s Variations in F minor, Hob. 17/6, a masterwork of invention and grace, before concluding with Beethoven’s celebrated Sonata Pathétique.

In 1792, the young Beethoven moved to Vienna, where he spent a year studying with Haydn and gaining comfort with the Viennese style. Haydn’s popular 1793 Variations in F minor—by turns melancholy, insistent, and whimsical—are a sparkling and intense demonstration of Viennese charm. Beethoven quickly mastered the style, and began to assert his independence within its forms. The Beethoven works on this program were all written in 1797 and 1798, and demonstrate the flexibility with which he already treated the complex rules and traditions that made up the Classical style. These are the works that first demonstrate the much-quoted prophecy of Count von Waldstein that Beethoven would “receive the spirit of Mozart from the hands of Haydn”: grace at the hands of wit, tinged with rebellion.

Kristian Bezuidenhout will give a pre-concert talk at 7pm at First Church, Congregational, Cambridge.

Kristian Bezuidenhout
was born in South Africa in 1979. He began his studies in Australia, completed them at the Eastman School of Music and now lives in London. After initial studies as a modern pianist with Rebecca Penneys, he explored early keyboards, studying harpsichord with Arthur Haas, fortepiano with Malcolm Bilson and continuo playing and performance practice with Paul O’Dette. He first gained international recognition at the age of 21 after winning the prestigious first prize as well as the audience prize in the Bruges Fortepiano Competition, and now divides his time between concerto, recital and chamber music engagements. He has appeared in the early music festivals of Barcelona, Boston, Bruges, Innsbruck, St. Petersburg, Venice and Utrecht; the festivals of Salzburg, Edinburgh, Tanglewood and Mostly Mozart Lincoln Center, and at many of the world’s most important concert halls including the Berlin and Köln Philharmonie, Suntory Hall, Theatre des Champs Elysées, Symphony Hall, Konzerthaus Vienna, Wigmore Hall and Carnegie Hall.

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BEMF’s 2016–2017 Season Press Release:

Recognized as the preeminent early music presenter and Baroque opera producer in North America, the Boston Early Music Festival (BEMF) has been credited with securing Boston’s reputation as “America’s early music capital” (The Boston Globe). Founded in 1981, BEMF offers diverse programs and activities, including one GRAMMY Award-winning and four GRAMMY Award-nominated opera recordings, an annual concert series that brings early music’s brightest stars to the Boston and New York concert stages, and a biennial week-long Festival and Exhibition recognized as the “world’s leading festival of early music” (The Times, London). The 19th Boston Early Music Festival will take place from June 11–18, 2017, and will feature fully staged performances of André Campra’s Le Carnaval de Venise as the Centerpiece Opera. BEMF’s Artistic Leadership includes Artistic Directors Paul O’Dette and Stephen Stubbs, Opera Director Gilbert Blin, and Orchestra Director Robert Mealy.

The 2016–2017 Boston Early Music Festival Concert Series is presented with support from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, National Endowment for the Arts, ConstellationCenter, WGBH Radio Boston, Harpsichord Clearing House, Zuckermann Harpsichords International, and The Gregory E. Bulger Foundation.

For more information, images, press tickets, or to schedule an interview, please contact Kathleen Fay at 617-661-1812 or email