Antonín Dvořák: Complete Works for Solo Piano III. – On the Wings of Fame
Mazurkas, Op. 56, B. 111
Moderato in A major, B. 116
Question, B. 128bis
Impromptu in D minor, B. 129
Dumka, Op. 12/1, B. 136
Furiant, Op. 12/2, B. 137
Two Little Pearls, B. 156
Album Leaf, B. 158
Piano Pieces, Op. 52, B. 110
It's not every day one can attend a concert featuring several dozen compositions. Of course, festivals are ideal moments for special experiences. Under the guidance of Ivo Kahánek and the musicologist David Beveridge, audience members and young pianists will experience a marathon concert at which nearly all of Antonín Dvořák's music for solo piano and for piano four-hands will be heard. His piano works will be played in six topically arranged blocks that will encompass everything not already heard at the solo recitals of Iva Kahánek and the Ardašev Piano Duo.
Piano compositions are not in general among Dvořák's best known music - an exception perhaps being the extremely popular Humoresque No. 7 in G Flat Major. Still, he devoted himself to the piano continually, and he also frequently composed at the keyboard. This piano marathon is a special opportunity to get to know Dvořák's pianistic thinking at maximum intensity, magnified by insightful performing.
The patron of the event is the excellent pianist and popular Dvořák Prague Festival guest Ivo Kahánek. He already won over the festival public years ago as the curator of its Chamber Series and again last year performing Dvořák's Piano Concerto, for the recording of which he won a BBC Music Magazine Award. The marathon will also be an opportunity for the festival debuts of the pianists Marek Kozák, Natálie Schwamová, Matouš Zukal, Pavel Zemen, and Kristýna Znamenáčková.
The pianist Marek Kozák is a graduate of the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague from the studio of Prof. Ivan Klánský. He began to exhibit extraordinary talent at the age of four, when he began playing piano at an Elementary School of the Arts, and he was later discovered to have talent for playing organ and composing. In 2008 at age 15 he won the Petr Eben International Organ Competition in Opava. Also among his most important successes have been first prize at the Frédéric Chopin International Piano Competition in Mariánské Lázně, third priye at the Chopin Competition in Darmstadt, victory at the European Piano Competition in Bremen, participation in the final round of the prestigious Chopin Competition in Warsaw, and second prize at the Prague Spring Competition. He appears with leading Czech orchestras including the Janáček Philharmonic in Ostrava, the Moravian Philharmonic in Olomouc, and the Brno Philharmonic. He regularly gives solo concerts in this country and abroad, and he has issued a profile CD on the ArcoDiva label with works by J. Haydn, F. Chopin, C. Franck, and A. Skoumal. Since 2017 he has been teaching at the Music Grammar School of the City of Prague.
Suk Hall is the newest hall in the Neo-Renaissance Rudolfinum. It was created from 1940 to 1942 during modifications of the adjacent Dvořák Hall, as a smaller concert hall. In designing the interior decor architects Antonín Engel and Bohumír Kozák took inspiration from the original style of the Rudolfinum’s architects Josef Zítek and Josef Schulz, thus Suk Hall fits perfectly into the original composition of the building. During the most recent modifications in 2015, according to a design by architect Petr Hrůša, the acoustics of the hall and its connection to the Rudolfinum’s atrium were improved while respecting the historical value of these premises, protected as a historical landmark. Suk Hall has a new grand piano and continues to be intended mainly for performances of chamber music.