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Release: Immediate

Pianists Kalichstein, Pressler to play free recitals at UI Nov. 15, 20

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Joseph Kalichstein and Menahem Pressler, two of the world's most acclaimed classical pianists, will present free concerts within a single week in Iowa City as part of a celebration of piano performance and teaching presented by the University of Iowa School of Music.

Kalichstein's recital will be at 8 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 15 in Clapp Recital Hall. Pressler will play at 8 p.m. the following Friday, Nov. 20, also in Clapp Recital Hall.

Piano Festival '98/99 will bring a total of four renowned pianists to the UI campus during the current academic year: Kalichstein and Pressler this month, Rebecca Penneys in January and Gyorgy Sebok in February. All four visits will include free performances and an opportunity for the guest artists to work with piano students at the UI School of Music.

Both of the opening recitals will include major works from the Romantic piano repertoire. On Nov. 15 Kalichstein will play Schumann's "Kreisleriana," along with works by C.P.E. Bach, Mendelssohn and Liszt. And on his Nov. 20 recital, Pressler will play Schubert's Sonata in B-flat major, D 960, and Chopin's 24 Preludes, op. 28.

Each recital will be followed the next day by a master class in piano performance that will be open to the public free of charge. The master classes will be in Clapp Recital Hall: Kalichstein's from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday, Nov. 16, and Pressler's during the same hours on Saturday, Nov. 21. During each master class, piano students from the UI School of Music will perform music they have prepared, and the guest artists will provide suggestions, comments and insight into the works being presented.

"We feel this series will provide an extraordinary opportunity for both our students and the public," said Carole Thomas, head of the piano area at the School of Music and coordinator of Piano Festival '98/99. "All four of our guest artists are distinguished pianists and teachers. In addition to performances at the highest professional level, in their master classes they will give to the students and the public valuable insights into their own performances and their careers as professional musicians."

A winner of the distinguished Leventritt Award, Kalichstein has earned renown as a solo recitalist, concerto soloist with major orchestras, and as a member of the Kalichstein-Laredo-Robinson Trio, which has performed several times in the UI Hancher Auditorium.

This versatility is one reason he was recently named to the newly created post of chamber music advisor to the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. The appointment grew out of Kalichstein's close association with the Kennedy Center: In the past several seasons, he has given solo recitals there, appeared with the National Symphony under Leonard Slatkin and played a major role in chamber music festivals devoted to Brahms and Beethoven.

Born in Tel Aviv, Kalichstein came to the United States in 1962. After studying at the Juilliard School he won the Young Concert Artists Auditions, which led to his New York recital debut and an invitation from Leonard Bernstein to perform Beethoven's Fourth Piano Concerto with the New York Philharmonic in a nationally televised concert. Since then he has performed concertos with the most famed conductors and orchestras around the world.

A favorite of New York concertgoers, Kalichstein has twice appeared on Carnegie Hall's Keyboard Virtuosi series. He has also appeared there as guest soloist with the Leipzig Chamber Orchestra and, as part of Carnegie Hall's 1991 Centennial Season, with the Kalichstein-Laredo-Robinson Trio. He also has a long-standing relationship with New York's 92nd Street Y, where he has appeared numerous times on the Distinguished Artist series and been a regular participant in the Schubertiade series since its inception in1988-89. He frequently collaborates with the world's most renowned string quartets, including the Guarneri Quartet and the Emerson Quartet.

Pressler is a founding member and the only pianist in the 40-plus-year history of the Beaux Arts Trio, regarded by many chamber music connoisseurs as the finest chamber music ensemble in the world today. He has also enjoyed an international solo career that nearly spans five decades, and he has been teaching piano since 1955 at Indiana University, where he holds the rank of distinguished professor.

Born in Magdeburg, Germany, Pressler received most of his musical training in Israel. His career was launched after he was awarded first prize at the Debussy International Piano Competition in San Francisco. This was followed by his successful American debut with the Philadelphia Orchestra under Eugene Ormandy. Since then, Pressler's extensive tours of North America and Europe have included performances with the orchestras of New York, Chicago, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Dallas, San Francisco, Paris, Brussels, Oslo, Helsinki, and many others.

Founded in 1955, the Beaux Arts Trio has elevated the level of piano trio performance world wide through their exemplary performances and many recordings. The trio has been included on Hancher Auditorium's season several times -- most recently last season.

An extraordinary chamber music pianist, Pressler is also a frequent guest of the foremost string quartets. His recordings with the Emerson Quartet of Dvorak's and Schumann's piano quartets and quintets have just been released on Deutsche Grammohon. Simultaneously continuing his solo career, he recently made a recording for Philips Records of Beethoven's "Choral Fantasy" with the Leipzig Gewandhaus and conductor Kurt Masur. Altogether, Pressler has made more than 50 recordings with the Beaux Arts Trio and more than 30 solo recordings, making him one of the most recorded pianists active today.

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