Russian piano winner plays Breck |

Russian piano winner plays Breck

Olga Kern was the first woman to win a gold medal at the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition in 30 years. On March 18, the Russian piano player performs in Breckenridge.

What may have made her such a star is the fact that she was born into a family with direct links to Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninoff. As a result, she began studying piano at age 5 and won her first Rachmaninoff International Piano Competition at age 17.

Our small mountain town is just one of her stops in her shows with the symphonies of Detroit, Anchorage, Nashville, Dallas, Virginia, St. Louis, Rochester, Pittsburgh, Madison, Syracuse and more. Next year, she tours North America with violinist Vladimir Spivakov in their first chamber music collaboration outside of Europe. Last season, she performed all of the Rachmaninoff concerti, including her winning Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 3, with the Colorado Symphony.

She debuted in London in 2006, continually tours Europe, and has made appearances in South America, Canada and Asia. Critics rave about her “sheer talent” and radiance and call her “a young master” and “an artist to be reckoned with.”

For her appearance in Breckenridge, she will pair music by Clara and Robert Schumann with works from her homeland of Russia. Pieces include “Carnaval Op. 9,” Rachmaninoff’s Second Piano Sonata, Piano Sonata No. 9 by Alexander Scriabin and Balakirev’s virtuoso showpiece, “Islamey.”

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