Pianist Yuja Wang is celebrated for her charismatic artistry, emotional honesty and captivating stage presence. She has performed with the world’s most venerated conductors, musicians and ensembles, and is renowned not only for her virtuosity, but her spontaneous and lively performances, famously telling the New York Times ‘I firmly believe every program should have its own life, and be a representation of how I feel at the moment’.
Her skill and charisma were recently demonstrated in a marathon Rachmaninoff performance at Carnegie Hall alongside conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin and Philadelphia Orchestra. This historic event celebrating 150 years since the birth of Rachmaninoff, included performances of all four of his piano concertos plus the Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini in one afternoon, and saw queues around the block for tickets on the day. This season has also seen Yuja perform the world première of Magnus Lindberg’s Piano Concerto No.3 in San Francisco with further performances of the work scheduled elsewhere in North America and Europe.
Her combination of technical ease, colouristic range and sheer power has always been remarkable … but these days there is an ever-greater depth to her musicianship, drawing you into the world of each composer with compelling immediacy.
Yuja was born into a musical family in Beijing. After childhood piano studies in China, she received advanced training in Canada and at the Curtis Institute of Music under Gary Graffman. Her international breakthrough came in 2007, when she replaced Martha Argerich as soloist with the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Two years later, she signed an exclusive contract with Deutsche Grammophon, and has since established her place among the world’s leading artists, with a succession of critically acclaimed performances and recordings. She was named Musical America’s Artist of the Year in 2017, and in 2021 received an Opus Klassik Award for her world-premiere recording of John Adams’ Must the Devil Have all the Good Tunes? with the Los Angeles Philharmonic under the baton of Gustavo Dudamel.
Last season Yuja embarked on a highly-anticipated international recital tour, performing in world-class venues across North America, and Europe, astounding audiences once more with her flair, technical ability and exceptional artistry in a wide-ranging programme including Beethoven, Ligeti and Schoenberg.
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