Stephen Kovacevich is a living legend of piano playing who celebrates this year seventy years of career. In 1961 the then named Stephen Bishop had his European debut at the Wigmore Hall in London. The then virtually unknown young Los Angeles born pianist had been a student of Dame Myra Hess in London and he never entered any competition, which added to the overwhelming impression his playing provoked at that occasion. Overnight, he entered the elite of the world’s pianists, and he started appearing with the most prestigious orchestras and conductors worldwide, joining famous musicians in chamber music, appearing as a soloist in the most famous halls and festivals. He was one of the first pianists who made a habit of conducting from the keyboard when performing piano concertos live or in recordings. Kovacevich is particularly associated with the music of Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Brahms and Bartók and his recordings with Philips of music by these composers are still a reference today. In the modern repertoire, and apart from Bartók, he often included works by Berg and Stravinsky in his programs, while also engaging with modern composers like R. Rodney Bennett, Michael Tippett and John Tavener, who dedicated concertos to him. His Philips recording legacy was reissued as a 25-CD box set limited edition by Decca in 2015, on the occasion of his 75th anniversary. Starting in the 1990’s, he also recorded for EMI and more recently, for Onyx Records. Throughout his career he played in Chamber Music with Jacqueline Dupré, Martha Argerich (to whom he was married during the 70’s) Josef Suk, Lynn Harrell, Truls Mørk, Emmanuel Pahud, the Capuçon brothers, among others. At 82 years old, Stephen Kovacevich still has an impressively active international career both as a soloist and a recitalist.
JUNE 17 9:00pm – Convento dos Capuchos
Time of Tribute 2
Piano Recital by Stephen Kovacevich