One of the great improvisers of contemporary jazz piano, Brad Mehldau premieres a new piano concerto, commissioned by the Barbican, alongside Britten Sinfonia.
He’s a pianist that’s really able to get under the skin of music, finding new beauty in old melodies – not just with jazz standards, but also in his interpretations of Bach, bluegrass and Radiohead. This talent is turned to classical repertoire as he opens the show, performing and improvising around the music. In the second half of the concert, his imagination in full flow with his new piano concerto with Britten Sinfonia, his dizzyingly virtuosic, pop and rock-referencing pianism backed by vivid orchestration.
Mehldau has always been a musician with omnivorous taste, and classical music has always been a major component of that. Most recently, a string of performances and a commission, Three Pieces After Bach, led to this year’s album After Bach, comprising pieces from The Well-Tempered Clavier followed by Mehldau’s 21st Century response.
Bach arr. Stravinsky Prelude and Fugue No. 10 in E minor
Bach arr. Charles Coleman Prelude in B minor
Bach arr. Webern Ricercar No. 2 From The Musical Offering, BWV 1079
Bach arr. Berio Contrapunctus XIX From the Art of Fugue
Brad Mehldau Piano Concerto