LSM Newswire

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Pianist Kirill Gerstein Opens 2011 Toronto Summer Music Festival


Full festival program to be announced on April 12, 2011

Inaugurating his tenure as Artistic Director of the Toronto Summer Music Festival and Academy, Douglas McNabney announced today that the extraordinary Gilmore Award-winning pianist Kirill Gerstein will launch the 2011 edition of the Festival with a gala concert at 7:30 pm on July 19 at Koerner Hall, The Royal Conservatory of Music, TELUS Centre for Performance and Learning. The recital will be followed by a champagne reception for the audience. Festival passes will go on sale at the Royal Conservatory Box Office at 10:00 am on April 12, and single tickets for individual concerts will be available starting May 1. Full details for the 2011 Festival, which runs July 19 to August 13 in downtown Toronto, will be announced on April 12.

Toronto Summer Music has become one of the city’s most eagerly awaited summer cultural events. Many said it couldn’t be done; that you couldn’t mount a first-rate festival of classical music in downtown Toronto in the summer. Kudos to my predecessor, Agnes Grossmann, for proving them wrong! Here we are, about to enter our sixth season with an opening gala recital featuring the remarkable Kirill Gerstein,” says Douglas McNabney.

The 32 year-old Russian-born virtuoso Kirill Gerstein won the coveted 2010 Gilmore Artist Award which recognizes extraordinary artistry with a $300,000 prize. The award is given every four years to an exceptional pianist who is a profound musician with both charisma and breadth of musicianship. As a child, Gerstein taught himself jazz by imitating his parents’ record collection at the piano. He later dedicated himself to classical music after becoming absorbed by the many layers in its masterworks. An extraordinary musical experience was provided by Kirill Gerstein ... a gripping performance ... not a single note or phrase could have been improved upon. Listening to this enormously gifted young musician, one was convinced that maturity isn’t necessarily a matter of age.” (Jerusalem Post).

The Festival runs parallel to the Toronto Summer Music Academy, which houses two complementary programs designed for professional-level young artists: The Chamber Music Institute (July 17 to August 14), and The Art of Song (July 24 to August 7).

Festival passes go on sale at 10:00 am, April 12 and tickets for individual concerts on May 1 at The Royal Conservatory Box Office, 273 Bloor St W, 416-408-0208. For more information — and starting April 12, full program details — visit Find us on Facebook.

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