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Saleem Ashkar’s great Beethoven cycle: further recitals in Prague and new performances in Duisburg

The successful Beethoven cycle that the artist initiated in Prague is now complemented by a series of performances in Duisburg.

Thunderous applause even before the interlude, standing ovations at the end of the recital: Saleem Ashkar enjoyed a complete success when he performed at Duisburg’s Lehmbruck Museum in the scope of his Beethoven cycle. Scheduled for the 2017/2018 season, this series of recitals includes all piano sonatas by the composer, performed on the C. Bechstein concert grand of Duisburg’s philharmonic hall. During the first recital given in that city, Ashkar brilliantly interpreted Beethoven's Piano Sonata No. 1 in F minor Op. 2, Piano Sonata No. 13 in E-flat major Op. 27, Piano Sonata No. 27 in E minor Op. 90 and Piano Sonata No. 21 in C major Op. 53 “Waldstein”. Performing all of the thirty-two sonatas by Beethoven is a highly demanding project that, according to Ashkar, is a life-changing experience for a pianist.

At the same time, Saleem Ashkar is giving further Beethoven recitals in Prague, in the tradition of such outstanding musicians as Artur Schnabel and Alfred Brendel, who performed all of Beethoven’s piano sonatas in the 1940s and 1980s, respectively. The cycle given by Brendel in 1982, for example, included seventy-seven recitals in eleven large cities around the world.

It would be no surprise if Ashkar’s Beethoven cycle, with recitals in Israel, Prague, Berlin, Osnabrück and Duisburg, was to be seen as iconic by the coming generations.

 

Recitals in Duisburg

Wednesday February 21, 2018, 8:00 pm

Wednesday April 11, 2018, 8:00 pm

Wednesday May 30, 2018, 8:00 pm

 

Recitals in Prague

Monday February 26, 2018, 7:30 pm

Monday April 16, 2018, 7:30 pm

Monday June 4, 2018, 7:30 pm

 

 

>> Scheduled recitals

Saleem Ashkar in Duisburg and Prague

First part of Saleem Ashkar’s Beethoven cycle released on the Decca label

First part of Saleem Ashkar’s Beethoven cycle released on the Decca label

The long-established Decca label recently released the first double CD in the Beethoven cycle with piano sonatas interpreted by Saleem Ashkar. It includes the Sonatas op. 2 Nr. 3, op. 10 Nr. 1, op. 27 Nr. 2 and op. 109, recorded on a C. Bechstein D 282 concert grand at the Berlin-Britz manor. Critics praised Ashkar’s brilliant, powerful and self-confident play, confirming once again the artist’s rank among the best interpreters of works by the German composer.

Saleem Ashkar plans to finish the recording of the complete set of sonatas by Beethoven in 2020, the year when the 250th anniversary of the composer’s death is celebrated.