FLEISHER-JACOBSON PIANO DUO
Leon Fleisher, piano & Katherine Jacobson, piano
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Duo performances of legendary pianist and conductor Leon Fleisher with internationally renowned pianist Katherine Jacobson have received accolades from music's most respected critics. The duo performs in recital and with orchestras around the world.
Their performances of the Mozart Concerto for Two Pianos in F Major (K. 242) have been hailed in appearances in New York at Carnegie Hall, Philadelphia, Naples, Toronto, Dublin and Tokyo. In recital, the Fleisher-Jacobson Duo captivates their audiences with the musicality and brilliance of works by Mozart, Brahms, Schubert, Dvorak Slavonic Dances and Ravel. They can also be heard in four-hand works on Leon Fleisher’s latest album, All The Things You Are, released in 2014 on Bridge Records.
In the 2015-2016 season the duo will play recitals across the United States and abroad including appearances at Tanglewood, Music Academy of the West, Gretna Music, the University of Nevada and on tour in China. The duo will also be heard performing Mozart’s Concerto for Two Pianos in F Major (K. 242) with the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra in Shanghai, China.
Legendary pianist Leon Fleisher represents the gold standard of musicianship and, at 88 years young, he continues to impart his life-affirming artistry throughout the world, thriving in a sustained career as conductor and soloist, recitalist, chamber music artist, and master class mentor.
Mr. Fleisher made his debut with the New York Philharmonic in 1944 and in 1952, he became the first American to win the prestigious Queen Elisabeth of Belgium competition, establishing himself as one of the world’s premier classical pianists. At the height of his success, he was suddenly struck silent at age 36 with a neurological affliction later identified as focal dystonia, rendering two fingers on his right hand immobile. Rather than end his career, Mr. Fleisher began focusing on repertoire for the left hand only, conducting and teaching. Not until some forty years later was he able to return to playing with both hands after undergoing experimental treatments using a regimen of rolfing and 'botulinum toxin' injections.
In performance, Mr. Fleisher's 2014-2015 season includes recital appearances of left hand and four hand programs with his wife, the noted pianist Katherine Jacobson, at the Schleswig Holstein and Menuhin Festivals, a performance of the Mozart Concerto for Two Pianos in F Major, K. 242 with A Far Cry at the Kravis Center in West Palm Beach and recitals and chamber music engagements around the country, including the Brahms Piano Quintet with the Juilliard String Quartet in Philadelphia. Recent concerto appearances include Mozart with the Chicago Symphony at the Ravinia Festival, the Prokofiev Concerto No. 4 at Carnegie Hall with the New York String Orchestra conducted by Jaime Laredo, and performances with the Dover Quartet in New York and the Ying Quartet as part of a residency at the Eastman School of Music.
A Minnesota native, pianist Katherine Jacobson's performing career as soloist, duo pianist and chamber musician has received international acclaim. In 2004, her Carnegie Hall debut with piano duo partner Leon Fleisher was praised in The New York Times for its "abundant musicality and refined technique."
Orchestras with which Ms. Jacobson has performed include the Chicago Symphony at Ravinia, Philadelphia Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Toronto Symphony Orchestra and the New York String Orchestra among others. She has concertized in Europe, Scandinavia, the Far East and South America as well as in the United States and Canada.
With Leon Fleisher, she recorded the Mozart "Concerto for Two Pianos" K. 242 with the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra (Sony). A solo CD will be released in 2014 featuring music of Scriabin, Mozart and Schubert.
Ms. Jacobson graduated from St. Olaf College where she was a student of Ann Surace and Margaret Birkeland. She received her Master of Music degree from the Cleveland Institute of Music where she studied with Vitya Vronsky and was inspired by the duo piano team of Vronsky and Babin. At the Peabody Conservatory of Music, she worked with mentor and future husband, Leon Fleisher. Katherine Jacobson is on the faculty of the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University.