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Robert Levin, piano

Artist's Corner

    Overview

    Pianist Robert Levin is one of America’s leading keyboard players in the early instruments movement but maintains a large repertory in all major periods and genres of piano music. He is equally at home at the harpsichord, the fortepiano, and the standard pianoforte, and as a recitalist, concerto performer, and accompanist. In addition, he is recognized as an authoritative scholar on the Classical and Baroque periods.

    Robert Levin was born in 1947 in Brooklyn, New York. He studied piano with Louis Martin in New York City, and composition there with Stefan Wolpe. He was invited to study with the legendary teacher Nadia Boulanger at the American Conservatory in Fontainebleau, France, and in Paris while still a teenager. He had additional composition studies with Leon Kirchner, and master classes in piano with Clifford Curzon and Robert Casadesus when he was still a junior in high school. His piano teachers in Paris were Jean Casadesus and Alice Gaultier-Léon. He then studied at Harvard University. Upon graduation (magna cum laude), Rudolf Serkin invited him to join the faculty of the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia as head of the theory department. He was then requested by Nadia Boulanger to become the next Resident Director of the American Conservatory (1979 — 1983). In 1986 he was professor of piano at the Staatliche Hochschule fur Musik in Freiburg, Breisgau, Germany. He resigned this position in 1993 when he was appointed a professor at Harvard University. He now occupies the chair of Dwight P. Robinson, Jr. Professor of the Humanities at that institution.

    Mr. Levin is best known as a Mozart pianist and scholar. He has written cadenzas to many of the master’s recordings (including the piano, violin, and horn concertos), published embellishments of Mozart solo parts, and written several reconstructions or completions of Mozart works. His completion of Mozart’s Requiem won wide critical acclaim after its premiere by Helmuth Rilling at the European Music Festival in Stuttgart in August 1991. His reconstruction of the K. 297b Sinfonia concertante for four winds and orchestra is now frequently performed. He has published numerous scholarly studies in musical issues, usually concerning performing practice and authenticity, including a world-renowned publication of completions of fragmentary Mozart works. He has recorded on several labels, notably on Sony Classics’ Vivarte series.

    "Levin seemed to inhabit the character of the composer, interacting with the orchestra in surprising ways, adopting the historically-accurate practice of playing along with the orchestra as well as decorating and improvising portions of his own part."

    -Herald-Tribune

    Has no next concerts

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    Orion Quartet w/ Robert Levin, speaker

    Date: Wednesday, October 11, 2017 - 8:00 PM

    Location: Perelman Theater, Kimmel Center, 300 South Broad Street
    Philadelphia, PA 19102

    Haydn: Seven Last Words of Our Savior on the Cross, Op. 51

    This performance features a free pre-concert lecture starting at 6:45 PM with Jonathan Coopersmith

    Robert Levin, piano
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    Robert Levin, piano

    Date: Wednesday, December 18, 2013 - 8:00 PM

    Location: American Philosophical Society, Benjamin Franklin Hall
    427 Chestnut Street
    Philadelphia, PA 19106

    All-Mozart Recital
    Prelude in C Major, K. 284a/1
    Sonata in B-flat Major, K. 333
    Prelude in B-flat Major, K. 284a/2
    Sonata in E-flat Major, K. 282
    Prelude in C Minor, K. 284a/3
    Prelude in C Major, K. 284a/4
    Sonata in C Major, K. 330

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    Kim Kashkashian, viola and Robert Levin, piano

    Date: Friday, February 10, 2012 - 8:00 PM

    Location: American Philosophical Society, Benjamin Franklin Hall
    427 Chestnut Street
    Philadelphia, PA 19106

    Schumann: Adagio and Allegro, Op. 70
    Schumann: Fí¼nf Stí¼cke im Volkston, Op. 102
    Schumann: Fantasiestí¼cke, Op. 73
    Schumann: Violin Sonata in D Minor, Op. 121

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    Robert Levin, piano

    Date: Thursday, March 17, 2011 - 8:00 PM

    Location: American Philosophical Society, Benjamin Franklin Hall
    427 Chestnut Street
    Philadelphia, PA 19106

    All-Mozart Recital

    Prelude and Fugue in C Major, K. 394
    “Adagio variée” (sic) K3 Anh. 206a = K6, Anh. A 65
    Suite "in the style of Handel" in C Major, K. 399 [Completed by R. Levin]
    Piano Sonata in F Major, K. 533 with Rondo in F Major, K. 494
    Piano Sonata in D Major, K. 57

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    Kim Kashkashian, viola and Robert Levin, piano

    Date: Wednesday, October 25, 2000 - 7:30 PM

    Location: Rock Hall, Temple University,

    Hindemith: Viola Sonata in F Major, Op. 11, No. 4
    Kurtág: Signs, Games, and Messages [Selections]
    Kurtág: Játékok for Solo Piano [Selections]
    Enescu: Cello Sonata in F Major, Op. 26, No. 1
    Debussy: Première rhapsodie for Clarinet and Piano [Arr.]
    Brahms: Viola Sonata in E-­flat Major, Op. 120, No. 2

    Herald-Tribune

    “Levin seemed to inhabit the character of the composer, interacting with the orchestra in surprising ways, adopting the historically-accurate practice of playing along with the orchestra as well as decorating and improvising portions of his own part.”

    The Tech (MIT)

    “[Levin] brought not only endless energy, but also a depth of insight and creativity that revealed wonders anew in each and every nook and cranny of these well-explored works.”

    San Francisco Classical Voice

    “His improvisational skills in this idiom are legendary — an approach not many dare to take, yet one he considers essential to the interpretation of this music.”

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