Pianist Inon Barnatan to open Aspen Music Festival’s winter recital series

Pianist Inon Barnatan will perform Wednesday at Harris Concert Hall.
Courtesy photo |


Who: Inon Barnatan,

What: Aspen Music Festival and School Winter Music Recital Series

Where: Harris Concert Hall

When: Wednesday, Feb. 28, 6:30 p.m.

How much: $55


More info: The program will consist of works titled “Moments Musicaux” by Schubert, Avner Dorman and Rachmaninoff. The winter music series continues with violinist William Hagen (March 10) and Pacifica Quartet (March 15).

The Aspen Music Festival and School’s three-part Winter Music Recital Series will open tonight with the return of acclaimed Israeli pianist Inon Barnatan.

Barnatan’s program at Harris Concert Hall consists of three works of “Moments Musicaux” — or musical moments — by Schubert, Rachmaninoff and the contemporary Israeli composer Avner Dorman.

“The idea is something that has been brewing in my mind for a while,” Barnatan said in a program announcement, “because even though the Schubert and Rachmaninoff have the same title, in some ways these works are diametrically opposed. … In some ways both composers show their most authentic selves in these works.”

Barnatan notes the wildly different interpretations of musical moments by the composers: Schubert’s is intimate and Rachmaninoff’s grand. In the two Dorman pieces, commissioned by Barnatan, his countryman touches on each of these approaches in what Barnatan calls the “connecting tissue between the two halves.”

Aspen Music Festival Vice President for Artistic Administration Asadour Santourian describes the moments in this unique program as “a hybrid where the virtuosic moments are in service of the musical idea.”

Barnatan has been a regular in Aspen since 2008 and his star has risen internationally over the past decade. Most recently, during the summer 2017 season in Aspen, Barnatan performed two Harris Hall recitals, including a performance of Beethoven’s “Archduke” Trio that proved to be a season highlight, and the world premiere of a piano concerto composed by Alan Fletcher at the Benedict Music Tent.

The pianist is scheduled to return to Aspen in July for a performance of Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3 with the Aspen Chamber Symphony. Barnatan also performed Tuesday night at the Music Fest’s winter fundraiser.

The three-part Music Fest’s winter series continues with young violinist and Aspen alumnus William Hagen (March 10) and the popular Pacifica Quartet (March 15).