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Musical World

Antti Siirala

  • Pianist

Biography

Highlights among Antti Siirala’s upcoming appearances are debuts with the Mostly Mozart Orchestra under Osmo Vänskä at Lincoln Center and the Tonhalle Orchestra in Zurich.  This spring, he will perform as one of four pianists (the others being Pierre Laurent Aimard, Lang Lang, and Martin Helmchen) on the piano recital series of the Berlin Philharmonic.

In 2004, Mr. Siirala’s debut in Brussels exemplified his spontaneity and flexibility: asked to step in for the concert’s suddenly indisposed conductor, Mr. Siirala enthusiastically directed the orchestra from the piano in Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3.  Following the intermission, he further delighted the audience with a “splendid rendition” of Beethoven’s Diabelli Variations in place of the scheduled Third Symphony of Brahms.  He was immediately re-engaged for concerts with the Orchestre National and a recital at the Palais des Beaux Arts!  Pianists for whom he has successfully stepped in include Emanuel Ax, Yefim Bronfman, Hélène Grimaud and Ivo Pogorelich.

An enthusiastic recitalist, Antti Siirala has appeared at the Cologne Philharmonie, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Lucerne Festival, Schumannfest/Düsseldorf, Zurich Tonhalle, London’s Wigmore Hall, and major venues in Brussels, Milan, Detroit and New York.  His debut recording of Schubert transcriptions for Naxos (2003) and his subsequent recording of works by Brahms for Ondine both received Gramophone Magazine’s “Editor’s Choice” award.  Piano News awarded the Brahms disc its highest rating for interpretation.

Though the compositions of Beethoven and Brahms are at the heart of Antti Siirala’s repertoire, his grasp of the entire stylistic spectrum is equally impressive.  Especially committed to new music, he has premiered works by Walter Gieseler, Kuldar Sink, Uljas Pulkkis, and Kalevi Aho.  Kaijo Saariaho’s first work for piano solo, Balladen, is part of his current recital program.