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14th of August

Schubert Last Piano Sonatas – Debut Pentatone release


On 20 September, Francesco releases ‘Schubert Last Piano Sonatas’ on Pentatone, his debut on the label. The full album is exclusively available now on the Pentatone webshop for pre-order.

After years of engagement with these extraordinary works, the long musical journey that connects Francesco to Schubert’s music is reflected in these recordings. The works themselves are arguably among the most existential music ever written for the piano, juxtaposing beauty with sadness and celebrating life, whilst simultaneously anticipating the composer’s untimely death.

Classical Source described Francesco’s performance of the C minor Sonata at Wigmore Hall as an “excoriating, electrifying performance,” one whereby Francesco was “pushing Schubert’s piano writing to the edge.” The listener, they explained, was “never at the mercy of mere blasts of sound,” and most memorable was “the surge of possession that brought the finale to melting-point hysteria.”

Schubert Last Piano Sonatas

5th of August

Salzburg Festival


Francesco performs at the Salzburg Festival on 10 and 11 August, joining Andrew Manze and the Mozarteum Orchestra Salzburg for their all-Mozart programme, playing Concerto for Piano and Orchestra in B flat, K.595. Francesco has performed with Andrew Manze a number of times this season, including his debut at the Boston Symphony Orchestra in April where the Boston Globe described his performance as “absolutely effortless.”

Later in the month Francesco performs a Schubert recital programme at The Tivoli Concert Hall in Copenhagen, the Gstaad Menuhin Festival in Gstaad and at the Schubertiade Schwarzenberg, which will be recorded for broadcast on ORF on 3 September.

5th of July

Francesco opens the Festival de Lanaudière


Francesco begins July with two performances at the Festival de Lanaudière, Canada’s largest music festival. On 5 July, he joins Alain Altinoglu and the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal to open the festival with a performance of Mendelssohn Piano Concerto No.1. He follows it with a solo recital on 9 July, performing his critically acclaimed programme of Bach and Schubert.

Francesco then returns to Italy on 15 July to perform his recital programme at the Gustav Mahler Musikwoche in Toblach. A commune near the Austrian border, Toblach was where Gustav Mahler spent his summers and has hosted the Gustav Mahler Musikwoche since 1981.

13th of June

Francesco performs in recital at the Nohant Chopin Festival


Francesco returns to France this month to perform in recital at the Nohant Chopin Festival on 16 June. Nohant was the home of the writer (and Chopin’s lover) George Sands, and Chopin and Sands spent summers there between 1839 and 1846. Chopin composed many works at Sands’ house, including his Polonaise in A-flat major. The Nohant Chopin Festival was founded by the pianist Aldo Ciccolini in 1966 and this year focusing on the theme of exile. For his recital, Francesco performs a programme of Debussy’s Images, arrangements of Bach by Busoni and Kempf and Rachmaninov’s Piano Sonata No.2.

The recital follows Francesco’s return to Berlin’s Konzerthaus, where he gives three performances of Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No.2 with the Konzerthausorchester Berlin and conductor Eliahu Inbal on 7, 8 and 9 June.

16th of May

Francesco performs in recital at Lincoln Center


Francesco begins two weeks of concerts in the United States on 19 May when he performs in recital at Lincoln Center’s Great Performers series. His wide-ranging programme begins with Bach’s Italian Concerto and also features Book II of Debussy’s Images and Rachmaninov Piano Sonata No.2. He gives a further two recitals the following week, this time in California. On 21 May he performs at the Herbst Theater in San Francisco, and on 24 May he appears at California State University in Fresno. In California he performs an expanded version of his programme from New York, adding Busoni’s famous arrangements of Bach’s organ works as well as an arrangement of his Flute Sonata in E-flat major by Kempff.

Following his recitals in California, Francesco returns to the East Coast to join Gianadrea Noseda and the National Symphony Orchestra Washington for two performances of Rachmaninov’s Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini at Kennedy Center.

15th of May

Francesco’s recording of Années de pèlerinage: Deuxième Année out now


Francesco’s new recording of the second part of Liszt’s Années de Pèlerinage, ‘Deuxième Année: Italy’ is out now on Orfeo International. The title Années de Pèlerinage refers to Goethe’s famous Romantic novels Wilhelm Meister’s Apprenticeship and Wilhelm Meister’s Journeyman Years. Liszt prefaced many of his pieces with passages from Schiller, Byron or Senancour, firmly placing his work in the context of Romantic literature of the time. ‘Deuxième Année: Italy’ was initially composed between 1837 and 1849 and published in 1858 by Schott. The set also includes the collection ‘Venice and Naples’, three pieces composed in 1859 and published in 1861.

The album is accompanied by a DVD documentary from Roberta Pedrini, Travelling with Francesco Piemontesi, which follows Francesco as he explores some of the places and works that inspired Liszt’s masterpiece. Click here to watch the trailer.

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26th of April

Francesco performs in recital in London & the United States


Francesco begins the month in London, where he performs in recital at the Southbank Centre‘s Queen Elizabeth Hall on 2 May. He begins the evening with Johann Sebastian Bach’s Italian Concerto, which is complemented by a selection of Busoni’s famous arrangements of the composer’s works. Francesco also performs a less well-known arrangement of the Siciliano from Bach’s Flute Sonata BWV.1031 by the great German pianist Wilhelm Kempf. In the second half, Francesco performs Set 2 from Debussy’s Images and the original 1913 version of Rachmaninov’s Sonata No.2.

Francesco returns to the programme later in the month for a short recital tour of the United States. He begins his tour at New York’s Lincoln Center on 19 May and also visits Herbst Theater in San Francisco and California State University on 21 and 24 May. He rounds off his trip to the US with two performances of Rachmaninov’s Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini with the National Symphony Orchestra and Gianadrea Noseda at Washington DC’s Kennedy Center on 30 May and 1 June.

12th of April

Debut with the Boston Symphony Orchestra


Francesco gives his debut concerts with the Boston Symphony Orchestra this month, performing Mozart’s Piano Concerto No.19 in F major on 18, 19 and 20 April. Francesco is once again conducted by Andrew Manze, their third collaboration of 2019 following concerts with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and a tour with Manze’s NDR Radiophilharmonie Hannover. Mozart’s 19th Piano Concerto is performed relatively rarely, and Francesco is the first pianist to perform it with the Boston Symphony at their home in Symphony Hall for 25 years.

Francesco then reunites with Dutch conductor Antony Hermus in Helsinki on 26 April. Together they give another performance of Unsuk Chin Piano Concerto with the Helsinki Philharmonic, which they performed with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra in March. The concert will be streamed live on Helsinki Kanava and available on demand thereafter – click here for more information.

8th of March

Francesco tours Germany with the NDR Radiophilharmonie Hanover


Francesco reunites with Andrew Manze in March, this time for a series of concerts in Germany with the NDR Radiophilharmonie Hanover, of which Manze is the Chief Conductor. Francesco joins the orchestra as the soloist for Brahms’ Piano Concerto No.2, which performs throughout the tour.

The tour begins at the Kurhaus Bad Harzburg on 15 March before visiting the Northeim Stadthalle on 17 March, Theater Wolfsburg on 22 March and finally the Muziekgebouw Frits Philips in Eindhoven on 25 March. They also give three performances at the orchestra’s home in Hanover on 21 and 24 March.

Francesco then heads to Moscow to perform Beethoven’s third Piano Concerto at the Rostropovich Festival with Sir Antonio Pappano and the Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia.

22nd of February

Mozart with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra


Francesco returns to the Scottish Chamber Orchestra for three concerts conducted by Andrew Manze this month, starting with a performance of Mozart’s Piano Concerto No.27 at St Andrews’ Younger Hall on 27 February. He then performs the composer’s Piano Concerto No.19 at the Queen’s Hall in Edinburgh on 28 February and at Glasgow City Halls the following day.

Francesco and Manze  first came together with the SCO in 2011 and reunited two years ago for Mozart concerts that led to a critically acclaimed recording for Linn Records. They reunite again later in March for concerts with the NDR Radiophilharmonie Hannover on 17,  21 and 24 March, with Francesco performing Brahms’ Piano Concerto No.2. They also perform together in April, performing Mozart Piano Concerto No.19 with the Boston Symphony Orchestra.

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