Pianissimo Summer Piano Festival 2023

GES-2 House of Culture in partnership with the Pianissimo festival presents a programme of summer concerts of piano music. Leading young performers from Russia and abroad will be taking part.

The idea behind the Pianissimo festival is to introduce listeners to the younger generation of musicians in spaces that are new for academic music. Among the halls where the festival participants have played are the State Hermitage, the Petersburg Manege and the ballroom of the Kulm Hotel in St. Moritz, Switzerland. Since 2022, Pianissimo has also been held in Moscow, at GES-2 House of Culture.

Клавиши пианино крупным планом
Photo: Ruslan Shavaleev

During the years of the festival’s existence, prize-winners of international competitions have taken part (for example, winners of the International Tchaikovsky Competition laureates Dmitry Masleev and Konstantin Yemelyanov, and winner of the Sydney International Piano Competition Andrei Gugnin) and young musicians whose victories still lie ahead (Abisal Gergiev, Arseny Mun, Nikolai Kuznetsov). They were all aged under 30 at the time they took part in the project.

The 2023 summer programme also features performances by the most outstanding representatives of the new generation of the piano scene in Russia and abroad—Vladimir Petrov, Igor Petrov, Filipp Rudenko, Egor Sidorov, Dmitry Shishkin (Russia), Simon Bürki (Switzerland), Massimiliano Grotto (Italy), George Harliono (United Kingdom), and Efe Şen (Turkey).

Massimiliano Grotto

6 Jul 2023, 19:00–20:30

Massimiliano Grotto (b. 1997, Italy) is a pianist, student of the renowned performer Massimiliano Ferrati. He furthered his studies under renowned masters—Jerome Rose, Emanuel Krasovsky, Federico Colli, Riccardo Risaliti, Azumi Nishizawa and Massimo Somenzi. Massimiliano has taken the first places in a number of national and international competitions, including Crescendo (New York, USA), which culminated with a performance at Carnegie Hall, Euregio Piano Award (Heilenkirchen, Germany) and the International Piano Competition in Oleggio (Italy).


Franz Schubert
Four Impromptus, D 899
Sonata no. 14, D 784
Wanderer Fantasy, D 760

Igor Petrov

13 Jul 2023, 20:00–21:30

Igor Petrov (b. 2004, Russia) is a pianist, graduate of the St. Petersburg musical lyceum and the Secondary special music school. In 2022 he enrolled at the St. Petersburg Conservatory (class of Alexander Sandler). Winner of national and international competition, winner of the Giovanni Colafemmina award (Italy, 2022), winner of the Young Talents of Russia competition (2022), and The International Chopin Competition (Estonia, 2020). He has toured many European countries, including Germany, Finland and Estonia. Regular participant of the festivals From the Avant-garde to the Present Day, World of Art. Contrasts, Christmas Ensembles, Path to Parnassus, I Am Already an Artist (Russia), Flowers of Russia (Russia-Germany).


Ludwig van Beethoven
Sonata no. 2, op. 2

Johannes Brahms
Variations and Fugue on a Theme by Handel, op. 24

Pyotr Tchaikovsky–Sergei Rachmaninoff
Cradle Song

Sergei Rachmaninoff
Preludes, op. 23 nos. 4, 5, 7, 6, 2

Simon Bürki

14 Jul 2023, 20:00–21:30

Simon Bürki (b. 2000, Switzerland) is a pianist. He graduated from the Central Music school and the Moscow Conservatory (class of Andrei Pisarev) and currently is a student of The Juilliard School in New York (class of Sergei Babayan). Winner of the Vladimir Horowitz International Competition in Kiev (2011), Sberbank Debut (2013), 5th International Franz Liszt Competition for Young Pianists in Weimar (2017), A Step Towards Mastery in St. Petersburg (2017). Frequently tours France, Germany and Switzerland.


Robert Schumann
Kreisleriana, op. 16

Franz Liszt
Nocturne no. 3, S. 541

Sergei Rachmaninoff
Études-Tableaux, op. 39 nos. 1, 8, 5
Preludes, op. 23 nos. 8, 12, 13

Efe Şen

20 Jul 2023, 20:00–21:30

Efe Şen (b. 2005, Turkey) is a pianist. He had started learning piano at the age of eight. In 2017 he enrolled at the Istanbul State Conservatory at MSGSÜ (Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University), where he continued to study under the pianist İnci Yakar Birol. Winner of international competitions: the Pera Festival (Istanbul, 2019), Euplayy (Munich, 2020 and 2022), The Chopin 1st International Piano Competition for Children and Young Pianists (Istanbul, 2020). Frequently tours Poland, Estonia and Switzerland.


Sergei Rachmaninoff
Elegy, op. 3 no. 1

Ahmed Adnan Saygun
Étude from the cycle Fifteen Sketches on Aksak Rhythms, op. 47 no. 8

Frédéric Chopin
Étude, op. 25 no. 5
Études, op. 10 no. 1, 3
Nocturne, op. 48 no. 1
Four mazurkas, op. 17
Ballade no. 2, op. 38
Polonaise, op. 26 no. 2
Scherzo no. 2, op. 31

Dmitry Shishkin

27 Jul 2023, 20:00–21:30

Dmitry Shishkin (b. 1992, Russia) is a pianist. He began playing the piano at the age of two. In 2015 he graduated from the Moscow Conservatory (class of Eliso Virsaladze). He later studied under Epifanio Comis at the Conservatorio Vincenzo Bellini in Catania, Italy, and under Arie Vardi at the Hannover Higher School of Music, Theatre and Media. Winner of the Top of the World International Piano Competition in Tromsø, Norway (2017) and the 73rd Geneva International Music Competition (2018). Prize-winner of the Ferruccio Busoni Piano Competition in Bolzano, Italy (2013), Queen Elisabeth Competition in Brussels (2016), and the 16th International Tchaikovsky Competition (2019). He has recorded several solo discs of works by Chopin, Wagner, Elgar, Paderewski, Rachmaninoff, Scriabin, Medtner and Tchaikovsky.


Claude Debussy
Suite bergamasque
L’Isle joyeuse

Frédéric Chopin
Scherzo No. 2
Polonaise in A-flat major, Op. 53

Modest Mussorgsky
Pictures at an Exhibition

Egor Sidorov

3 Aug 2023, 20:00–21:30

Egor Sidorov (b. 2006, Russia) is a pianist. He studied at the Vladimir Regional Music College (choir and piano department). In 2017 enrolled at the Central Music School of the Moscow Conservatory (class of Mira Marchenko). Grand prize-winner of international competitions: International Balys Dvarionas Competition for Young Pianists and Violinists (Lithuania), Orchestra Soloist (Russia), Golden Talents (Russia), Music Box (Russia. Winner of international competitions: World Piano Teachers Association (WPTA, Finland), Young Chopin (Switzerland), and the Vladimir Krainev Online Competition (Russia). Stipend holder of the Vladimir Spivakov International Charity Foundation.


Nikolai Golovanov
Estampes, op. 21

Nikolai Medtner
Piano sonata op. 25 no. 1

Sergei Rachmaninoff
Preludes, op. 23 nos. 10, 6, 5

Frédéric Chopin
Mazurka, op. 59 no. 1Étude, op. 10 no. 12

George Harliono

4 Aug 2023, 20:00–21:30

George Harliono (b. 2001, United Kingdom) is a pianist. He gave his first concert at the age of nine and has since performed at Wigmore Hall, Royal Albert Hall in London, Berlin Philharmonic and other prestigious venues. He studied with Professor Pascal Nemirovski (Royal Birmingham Conservatoire) and attended master-classes given by Dmitri Bashkirov, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Vladimir Ovchinnikov, and other renowned pianists. He has been a prize-winner at prestigious international piano competitions including the Grand Piano Competition (Moscow), the Gina Bachauer International Piano Competition (Salt Lake City) and the Jeunesses International Music Competition Dinu Lipatti (Bucharest).


Ludwig van Beethoven
Sonata no. 18 in E-flat major, op. 31 no. 3

Pyotr Tchaikovsky
Nocturne, op. 19 no. 4
Meditation, op. 72 no. 5

Maurice Ravel
Une barque sur l’océan (from the cycle Miroirs)

Igor Stravinsky
Three fragments from the ballet Petrushka

Vladimir Petrov

10 Aug 2023, 20:00–21:30

Vladimir Petrov (b. 1997, Russia/Mexico) is a pianist. He graduated from the Central Music School (class of Valery Pyasetsky) and the Moscow Conservatory (class of Eliso Virsaladze), and is currently continuing his studies at the University of Music Franz Liszt Weimar (class of Grigory Gruzman). Winner of many international competitions: V International Piano Competition in memoriam of Vera Lotar-Shevchenko (Russia, 2020), International Piano Competition Cidade de Vigo (Spain, 2018), VI International José Jacinto Cuevas Yamaha Piano Competition (Mexico, 2018), and the NTD Television Competition (USA, 2019). Regular participant of the festivals Moscow Meets Friends, Denis Matsuev Presents, Stars on Baikal, Crescendo, and the Moscow Easter Festival.


Frédéric Chopin
Scherzo no. 2, op. 31
Scherzo no. 3, op. 39
Études, op. 10 nos. 1, 8, 9, 12
Étude, op. 25 no. 11

Franz Liszt
Grand Concert Fantasia on Spanish Themes, S. 253

Filipp Rudenko

17 Aug 2023, 20:00–21:30

Filipp Rudenko (b. 2002, Russia) is a pianist. He graduated from the Central Music School of the Moscow Conservatory (classes of Valery Pyasetsky and Vadim Rudenko). Currently he is a 3rd year student of the Moscow Conservatory, where he studies under Andrei Pisarev and Nikolai Lugansky. Stipend holder and participant of concert programmes of the Vladimir Spivakov International Charity Foundation and the Art Liniya Foundation. He has performed at the History Museum in Moscow and the Russian Museum in St. Petersburg, participated in the festivals Imperial Gardens of Russia and Dedication to Oleg Kagan, and festivals in Osnabrück, Germany, and Burgas, Bulgaria.


Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Piano sonata no.18 in D major, K. 576

Robert Schumann
Faschingsschwank aus Wien (Carnival Scenes from Vienna), op. 26

Sergei Rachmaninoff
Preludes, op. 23 nos. 6 and 7
Étude-Tableau, op. 39 no. 7
Études-Tableaux, op. 33 nos. 8 and 9
Prelude, op. 32 no. 13

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