About

Emanuel Ax, pianist

Born in modern day Lvov, Poland, Emanuel Ax moved to Winnipeg, Canada, with his family when he was a young boy. His studies at the Juilliard School were supported by the sponsorship of the Epstein Scholarship Program of the Boys Clubs of America, and he subsequently won the Young Concert Artists Award. Additionally, he attended Columbia University where he majored in French. Mr. Ax made his New York debut in the Young Concert Artists Series, and captured public attention in 1974 when he won the first Arthur Rubinstein International Piano Competition in Tel Aviv. In 1975 he won the Michaels Award of Young Concert Artists followed four years later by the coveted Avery Fisher Prize.

In partnership with colleagues Leonidas Kavakos and Yo-Yo Ma, he begins the current season with concerts in Vienna, Paris and London with the trios of Brahms recently released by SONY Classical. In the US he returns to the orchestras in Cleveland, Chicago, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Washington, Detroit, Pittsburgh, Nashville and Portland, OR, and to Carnegie Hall for a recital to conclude the season. In Europe he can be heard in Munich, Amsterdam, Berlin, Rome, Vienna, London, and on tour with the Budapest Festival Orchestra in Italy.
Always a committed exponent of contemporary composers, with works written for him by John Adams, Christopher Rouse, Krzysztof Penderecki, Bright Sheng, and Melinda Wagner already in his repertoire, most recently he has added HK Gruber’s Piano Concerto and Samuel Adams’ “Impromptus”.

A Sony Classical exclusive recording artist since 1987, recent releases include Mendelssohn Trios with Yo-Yo Ma and Itzhak Perlman, Strauss’ Enoch Arden narrated by Patrick Stewart, and discs of two-piano music by Brahms and Rachmaninoff with Yefim Bronfman. In 2015 Deutche Grammophon released a duo recording with Mr. Perlman of Sonatas by Faure and Strauss, which the two artists presented on tour during the 2015/2016 season. Mr. Ax has received GRAMMY® Awards for the second and third volumes of his cycle of Haydn’s piano sonatas. He has also made a series of Grammy-winning recordings with cellist Yo-Yo Ma of the Beethoven and Brahms sonatas for cello and piano. His other recordings include the concertos of Liszt and Schoenberg, three solo Brahms albums, an album of tangos by Astor Piazzolla, and the premiere recording of John Adams’s Century Rolls with the Cleveland Orchestra for Nonesuch. In the 2004/05 season Mr. Ax also contributed to an International EMMY® Award-Winning BBC documentary commemorating the Holocaust that aired on the 60th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz. In 2013, Mr. Ax’s recording Variations received the Echo Klassik Award for Solo Recording of the Year (19th century music/Piano).

A frequent and committed partner for chamber music, he has worked regularly with such artists as Young Uck Kim, Cho-Liang Lin, Mr. Ma, Edgar Meyer, Peter Serkin, Jaime Laredo, and the late Isaac Stern.

Mr. Ax resides in New York City with his wife, pianist Yoko Nozaki. They have two children together, Joseph and Sarah. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and holds honorary doctorates of music from Skidmore College, Yale University, and Columbia University.

Next Concerts

    October 20, 2018

    Duke Performances

    Baldwin Auditorium

    Durham, NC

    BACH: Partita No. 1 in B-flat Major, BWV 825
    SCHOENBERG: Six Little Piano Pieces, op. 19
    SCHUMANN: Fantasiestücke, op. 12
    RAVEL: Valses nobles et sentimentales
    CHOPIN: Andante spianato et grande polonaise brillante, op. 22
    CHOPIN: Three Mazurkas, op. 59

    October 23, 2018

    Charleston Gaillard Center

    Gaillard Center

    Charleston, SC

     

    October 25, 2018

    Civic Music Association of Des Moines

    Sheslow Auditorium

    Des Moines, IA

    BACH: Partita No. 1 in B flat
    SCHOENBERG: Piano Pieces Op. 19
    SCHUMANN: Fantasiestuecke
    RAVEL: Valses Nobles et Sentimentales
    CHOPIN: 3 Mazurkas, Andante Spianato

    October 28, 2018

    Celebrity Series of Boston

    Symphony Hall

    Boston, MA

    BACH: Partita No. 1 in B-flat Major, BWV825
    SCHOENBERG: Six Little Piano Pieces, Opus 19
    SCHUMANN: Fantasiestücke, Opus 12
    RAVEL: Valses Nobles et Sentimentales
    CHOPIN: Mazurkas TBD
    CHOPIN: Andante Spianato and Grand Polonaise Brillante, Opus 22

    November 3, 2018

    New World Symphony

    Adrienne Arsht Center

    Miami, FL

    WAGNER: Overture to The Flying Dutchman
    BEETHOVEN: Piano Concerto No. 1
    SIBELIUS: Symphony No. 5

    November 9, 2018

    Detroit Symphony

    Orchestra Hall

    Detroit, MI

    BEETHOVEN: Piano Concerto No. 1
    NORMAN: Play

    November 10, 2018

    Detroit Symphony

    Orchestra Hall

    Detroit, MI

    BEETHOVEN: Piano Concerto No. 1
    NORMAN: Play

    November 15, 2018

    The Cleveland Orchestra

    Severance Hall

    Cleveland, OH

    KABELÁČ – Mystery of Time
    STRAVINSKY – Capriccio (for piano and orchestra)
    SHOSTAKOVICH – Symphony No. 5

NY Philharmonic

Artist-in-Residence: Emanuel Ax 2012/13.
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Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 4
Brahms: Music For 2 Pianos
Haydn: Piano Sonatas
Liszt: Piano Sonata in B Minor
Mendelssohn: Piano Trios
Strauss: Enoch Arden

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Extract from masterclass given by Emanuel Ax on Beethoven Piano Sonatas and Variations. The student is Nicolas Van Poucke. The full masterclass is available on DVD from www.masterclassfoundation.org

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