Chan Conducts Rachmaninov

Thu 1 Nov 2018, 7.30PM
Caird Hall, Dundee

Dukas The Sorcerer's Apprentice
Chopin Piano Concerto No2
Rachmaninov Symphonic Dances

Elim Chan Conductor
Benjamin Grosvenor Piano

There’s magic in the air as the award-winning Elim Chan joins the RSNO team as Principal Guest Conductor. And it’s not just confined to Dukas’ fabulous musical fairy tale of wizardry gone wrong (think Disney’s Fantasia). There’s the nostalgia of Rachmaninov’s Symphonic Dances, with its evocation of a haunted ballroom. And Benjamin Grosvenor summons up the heart-on-sleeve romance of Chopin’s tuneful Piano Concerto No2. The nation’s favourite young pianist? Well, come and decide for yourself!

This concert is recommended by Classic FM

6.45PM: Ursula Heidecker Allen (RSNO Violin) in conversation with Elim Chan (RSNO Principal Guest Conductor) in the Marryat Hall.

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Featured Artists

Elim Chan

Elim Chan Conductor

Born in Hong Kong, Elim Chan became the first female winner of the Donatella Flick Conducting Competition in December 2014 as a result of which she held the position of Assistant Conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra in 2015/16. From the 2017/18 season she assumes the title of Chief Conductor of NorrlandsOperan and has been appointed to the Dudamel Fellowship programme with the Los Angeles Philharmonic in 2016/17. Recent notable highlights include her debut with the Mariinsky Orchestra in spring 2016,as a result of a personal invitation from Valeriy Gergiev, both in St. Petersburg and on tour in Mexico as well as her debut at the Lucerne Festival with the Lucerne Festival Academy Orchestra. This season sees her debut with Luzerner Sinfonieorchester, Orchestre Philharmonique de Luxembourg, Orchestre National de Belgique, Australian Youth Orchestra, Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne, Norrköping Symphony and Orquesta Filarmonica de Gran Canaria as well as her North American debuts with the Berkeley, Detroit and Chicago Symphony orchestras. Chan will make a return visit in 2017 to the Hong Kong Philharmonic and will conduct a variety of New Year concerts with Orchestra Haydn di Bolzano e Trento.Elim Chan holds degrees from Smith College and the University of Michigan. Whilst at the latter, she served as Music Director of the University of Michigan Campus Symphony Orchestra and the Michigan Pops Orchestra. She also received the Bruno Walter Conducting Scholarship in 2013.

Benjamin  Grosvenor

Benjamin Grosvenor Piano

British pianist Benjamin Grosvenor is internationally recognized for his electrifying performances and insightful interpretations. His virtuosic command over the most strenuous technical complexities underpins the remarkable depth and understanding of his musicianship. Benjamin is renowned for his distinctive sound, described as ‘poetic and gently ironic, brilliant yet clear-minded, intelligent but not without humour, all translated through a beautifully clear and singing touch’ (The Independent), and making him one of the most sought-after young pianists in the world.

Benjamin first came to prominence as the outstanding winner of the Keyboard Final of the 2004 BBC Young Musician Competition at the age of eleven, and he was invited to perform with the BBC Symphony Orchestra at the First Night of the 2011 BBC Proms at just nineteen. Since then, he has become an internationally regarded pianist and was announced in 2016 as the inaugural recipient of The Ronnie and Lawrence Ackman Classical Piano Prize with the New York Philharmonic. As part of this he returns to New York in April 2018, performing Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3 under the baton of Esa-Pekka Salonen as well as chamber music with members of the orchestra at the Tisch Center for the Arts at 92nd Street Y.

Recent and future highlights include engagements with the Boston Symphony, Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Gürzenich-Orchestra Cologne, Cleveland, Gulbenkian and Hallé Orchestras, Leipzig Gewandhausorchester, Filarmonica della Scala, the London, Melbourne, San Francisco, Singapore, Tokyo, and Washington National Symphony Orchestras, and an appearance at the 2015 Last Night of the Proms with the BBC Symphony Orchestra under Marin Alsop. Among his major recital dates are Vienna Konzerthaus, Théâtre des Champs Elysées Paris, Muziekgebouw Amsterdam, Carnegie Hall New York, Konzerthaus Berlin, Barbican Centre London, Musashino Civic Cultural Hall Tokyo, the Lucerne and Gilmore Festivals, La Roque d’Antheron, the International Piano Series at the Southbank Centre as well as his first tour of South America.

Benjamin has worked with numerous esteemed conductors including Vladimir Ashkenazy, Jirí Belohlávek, Andrey Boreyko, Semyon Bychkov, Riccardo Chailly, Charles Dutoit, Sir Mark Elder, Edward Gardner, Alan Gilbert, Vladimir Jurowski, Andrew Litton, Andrew Manze, Ludovic Morlot, Kent Nagano, Gianandrea Noseda, Sir Roger Norrington, François-Xavier Roth, Alexander Shelley, Thomas Søndergård, Nathalie Stutzmann, Gabor Takacs-Nagy and with Michael Tilson Thomas.

Benjamin enjoys incorporating chamber music collaborations into his schedule, including performances with the Escher, Elias and Endellion String Quartets, chamber ensembles of the Orchestre Symphonique de Montreal, the New York and Naples Philharmonic Orchestras, and at venues such as Paris’ Musée du Louvre and London’s Queen Elizabeth Hall. Since the 2015-16 season Benjamin has been invited to participate in the prestigious “Junge Wilde” series by Konzerthaus Dortmund, where over the course of three years he will perform on a number of occasions, including in June 2018 with violinist Hyeyoon Park.

In 2011 Benjamin signed to Decca Classics, becoming the youngest British musician ever to sign to the label, and the first British pianist to sign to the label in almost 60 years. Benjamin’s fourth CD on the label, Homages (2016), explores a number of works in which great composers pay tribute to their predecessors, including Busoni’s transcription of Bach’s great solo violin Chaconne, Franck’s Choral, Prelude and Fugue and Liszt’s tribute to Italian folk song, Venezia e Napoli. Awarded a Diapason d’Or, the disc was described by BBC Music Magazine as “showing off his fluid virtuosity, musical sensitivity and fearless approach” and named Instrumental Choice of the month.

During his sensational career to date, Benjamin has received Gramophone’s Young Artist of the Year and Instrumental Awards, a Classic Brits Critics’ Award, UK Critics’ Circle Award for Exceptional Young Talent and a Diapason d’Or Jeune Talent Award. He has been featured in two BBC television documentaries, BBC Breakfast and The Andrew Marr Show, as well as in CNN’s Human to Hero series. The youngest of five brothers, Benjamin began playing the piano aged 6. He studied at the Royal Academy of Music with Christopher Elton and Daniel-Ben Pienaar, where he graduated in 2012 with the ‘Queen’s Commendation for Excellence’ and in 2016 was awarded a Fellowship. Benjamin has been supported since 2013 by EFG International, the widely respected global private banking group.