Pierre-Laurent Aimard

Learning curves

First prize-winner at last year’s Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, South Korean pianist Yekwon Sunwoo has a wise head on him for one so young, building a busy international career with care and consideration. Stephen Wigler talks to a pianist who is devoted to learning even as he excels as a master of his instrument

The ill-tempered clavier

by Charivari

Two musical reasons to be cheerful have lifted Charivari out of his usual slough of despond. Enjoy your curmudgeonly columnist’s good mood while you can – it’s unlikely to last…

Pierre-Laurent Aimard

by Claire Jackson

Pierre-Laurent Aimard is an artist deeply connected with the contemporary world and its most pressing concerns. One of his latest projects, featuring Messiaen’s Catalogue d’oiseaux, saw him breaking out of the confines of the concert hall, championing the eco-system of the Suffolk coast. Claire Jackson had an early start to catch the pianist in Aldeburgh, communing with the dawn chorus

In the mind’s eye

by Paul Roberts

The term ‘Impressionism’ is a crude label to apply to the music of Debussy, whose compositions, while often inspired by visual motifs, defy definition as they strive to capture the essence of reality rather than merely a vague sense of mood. Paul Roberts describes how Debussy used his ears and eyes to provoke a complex, fresh and imaginative response to the world through the medium of sound

Frederic Rzewski

by Benjamin Ivry

Maverick, politically charged and full of controversial insights into the art of performance, Frederic Rzewski discusses his creative life and socialist convictions with Benjamin Ivry

Personal touch

by Margaret Fingerhut

A musical gift of love from Robert Schumann to his wife Clara on their wedding day was replicated at another marriage ceremony last summer, when pianist Margaret Fingerhut received a very special facsimile from her new husband, Sainsbury’s chairman David Tyler

Ful compass

IP looks ahead to some key festivals around the world, from the serene natural beauty of the Swiss Alps to the sun-kissed beaches of America’s Florida coastline

Tales of the unexpected

by Jeremy Nicholas

If it’s an unvarying diet of Beethoven, Schubert and Brahms you crave, don’t go to the Husum piano festival. Jeremy Nicholas embarks on a voyage of musical discovery to Germany’s north coast, culminating in a week of rare treats shared with adventurous pianophiles

L’isle joyeuse (The Joyful Island), L 106

By Claude Debussy

Music of my life

Strong personalities with a unique approach to making-music have shaped Boris Berezovsky’s own deeply individual approach to interpreting the classics