classical music

Pierre-Laurent Aimard: Beethoven the Modernist

Part of Classical Season 2020/21

Pierre-Laurent Aimard tops out his three-year residency with a celebration of Beethoven’s genius – and a reminder that his legacy endures.

At the centre of his recital are two of Beethoven’s most ambitious piano sonatas.

By the composer’s own admission, the Piano Sonata Op.10 No.3 depicts a ‘soul in the grip of melancholy’. But this is no mournful lament. It is a freewheeling fantasy filled with light and shade, humour and humility.

Altogether more extrovert, Beethoven’s Appassionata Sonata has been described as ‘an unleashing of elemental forces.’ Yet Beethoven uses his outspoken, heart-on-sleeve music to remind us of humanity’s natural compassion.

In the 250th year since Beethoven’s birth, Aimard continues his exploration of the parallels and interconnections between Beethoven’s work and the masterpieces of the 20th-century avant-garde.

He begins with another piano work that saw its composer taking his first steps down a new path.

In the fantasy waltz that ends Schoenberg’s 5 Pieces we hear the composer’s first published ‘tone row’ – a theme using all twelve notes of the scale that shows no allegiance to a particular key.

This dawning of a seismic rethinking of music’s vocabulary comes after music that’s tender and vigorous, calm and ironic.

In the ninth of his piano ‘drawings’, the Klavierstücke, Karlheinz Stockhausen homes in on the basic structure of chords and uses a Schoenberg-derived tone-row of his own. The result is a piano work as fixating as it is fresh.

The Wall Street Journal described Aimard as ‘a brilliant musician and extraordinary visionary.’ His final concert as a Southbank Centre artist-in-residence is sure to demonstrate exactly why.

Performers

Pierre-Laurent Aimard piano

Repertoire

Schoenberg: 5 Pieces, Op.23
Beethoven: Sonata in D, Op.10 No.3
Interval
Beethoven: Sonata in F minor, Op.57 (Appassionata)
Stockhausen: Klavierstück IX

Dates & times

2 Dec 2020
Approximate run time: 105 mins
Run times may vary, find out more

where

Queen Elizabeth Hall

Pricing

£10 - £45
Booking fee: £3.50 (Members £0.00)

Multi-buy discount

£10, £18, £25, £35, £45

Multi-buy discount
Book 3 to 4 events in the International Piano Series and save 10% on tickets, or book 5 or more events and save 20%. This discount is not available on Premium seats and only applies to multiple concerts bought in the same series, not across two or more series.

Concessions

25% off (limited availability)
Find out more about our Concessions policy

need to know

Ticketing
Book 3 to 4 events in the International Piano Series and save 10% on tickets, or book 5 or more events and save 20%. This discount is not available on Premium seats and only applies to multiple concerts bought in the same series, not across two or more series.

Southbank Centre takes a strong view on secondary ticketing. We require the lead booker to attend (photo ID may be requested). Tickets can only be resold by Southbank Centre or one of its authorised agents.

Discounted student tickets are available from Student Pulse in the month before this concert. Some of these seats may be on the stage.

Download the Student Pulse app or register online.