Pianist Brings Power to Liszt Concerto

Photo of Yundi Li

Chinese pianist Yundi Li's latest album interprets Franz Liszt's Piano Concerto No. 1. Matthias Bothor hide caption

itoggle caption Matthias Bothor

From the CD

Yundi Li performs Franz Liszt's Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 1 in E flat major.

It took Franz Liszt 26 years to compose his Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 1 in E flat Major.

But his long years of off-and-on composition paid off. The work, which is said to have been modeled after Beethoven's Fifth Symphony, went on to become a staple on the concert calendar.

This week, the National Symphony Orchestra gave three performances of the concerto, featuring pianist Yundi Li. Since winning first prize at the 2000 Chopin International Piano Competition in Warsaw at 18, he has become a much in-demand performer around the world.

His performance at the Kennedy Center Thursday night prompted Washington Post critic Tim Page to write that Yundi Li seems to "be able to get whatever he wants from a piano — whether the most silken of soft passages or vast, thundering Niagaras of octaves ... this was thrilling pianism on every level."

The pianist joined Liane Hansen in the studio to discuss Liszt's Concerto No. 1, which is on his latest album, Chopin Liszt Piano Concerto No. 1.

Purchase Featured Music

Chopin Liszt Piano Concerto No. 1

Purchase Music

Purchase Featured Music

Album
Chopin Liszt Piano Concerto No. 1
Artist
Yundi Li
Label
Deutsche Grammophon
Released
2007

Your purchase helps support NPR Programming. How?

 

Comments

 

Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the NPR.org Community rules and Terms of Use. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.