April 29, 2015
Senior Director, Communications
INTERNATIONALLY-ACCLAIMED PIANIST LANG LANG RETURNS TO HOUSTON TO HELP CLOSE OUT THE HOUSTON SYMPHONY 2014-15 SEASON
Music Director Andrés Orozco-Estrada leads Chinese superstar
Lang Lang—named to Time magazine’s "Most Influential People in the World"—brings colossal talent to Jones Hall
Symphony and Lang Lang to perform Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 5 and Piano Concerto No. 1
HOUSTON (April 29, 2015)—Superstar Chinese pianist Lang Lang returns to Jones Hall on Tuesday, May 12, to perform with the Houston Symphony for one night only under the baton of Music Director Andrés Orozco-Estrada.
Lang Lang Joins Andrés will be a reunion for Lang Lang and Orozco-Estrada, having performed together with Vienna’s Tonkünstler Orchestra for the summer gala concert at the 2009 Grafenegg Festival. Lang Lang, who made his Houston Symphony debut as a young rising star in 1999 at Miller Outdoor Theatre, was last in Houston in October 2012 when he performed three different Beethoven piano concertos with the Houston Symphony during a subscription weekend. On May 12, he will be back at Jones Hall interpreting Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1.
When not performing at sold-out concerts and recitals across the world, the 32-year old superstar stays busy appearing at the world’s most prestigious events, including the world’s most widely viewed sporting events. Lang Lang has performed at the Opening Ceremony of the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing and the 2014 World Cup in Rio de Janeiro alongside Spanish tenor Plácido Domingo. And most recently, Lang Lang was seen performing at the 57th Annual Grammy Awards alongside singer-songwriter Pharrell Williams.
No contemporary artist has made a stronger impact on the classical world than Lang Lang. Described as the “hottest artist on the classical music planet” by The New York Times, Lang Lang has inspired millions of Chinese children to play classical piano through his work for the United Nations as a Messenger of Peace focusing on global education and through his Lang Lang International Music Foundation.
For tickets and information, please call (713) 224-7575 or visit www.houstonsymphony.org. Tickets may also be purchased at the Houston Symphony Patron Services Center in Jones Hall (Monday–Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.). All programs and artists are subject to change.
Full Concert Details:
Lang Lang Joins Andrés
Tuesday, May 12, 2015, 7:30pm
Andrés Orozco-Estrada, conductor
Lang Lang, piano
Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 5
Tchaikovsky: Piano Concerto No. 1
Tickets from $35
615 Louisiana St.
Houston, TX 77002
About Andrés Orozco-Estrada
Andrés Orozco-Estrada began his tenure as Music Director of the Houston Symphony in the 2014-2015 season, and immediately established a dynamic presence on the podium and a deep connection with musicians and audiences. In addition to his Houston post, he is chief conductor of the Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra and in the 2015-16 season, will become principal guest conductor of the London Philharmonic Orchestra. Next season will also mark his official subscription debut with the Vienna Philharmonic, as well as debuts with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, the Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich, the Philadelphia Orchestra, and the Cleveland Orchestra.
Born in Medellin, Colombia, Orozco-Estrada began his musical studies on the violin, and started conducting at age 15. At the age of 19 he entered the Vienna Music Academy, where he studied with UrošLajovic (pupil of the legendary Hans Swarowsky), and went on to complete his degree with distinction conducting the Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra at the Musikverein. Orozco-Estrada burst on the international scene with two substitutions with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra: the first, his debut in 2010, standing in for Esa-Pekka Salonen, and then in 2012 stepping in for Riccardo Muti at the Musikverein. He has worked with the most prominent European orchestras, most recently Munich Philharmonic, Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, Mahler Chamber Orchestra, City of Birming¬ham Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra di Santa Cecilia in Rome, Orchestre National de France and Oslo Philharmonic. Highlights of the 2014-15 season include debuts with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra and the Royal Concertgebouw Amsterdam as well as at the Salzburg Festival.
About Lang Lang
If one word applies to Lang Lang—the musician, the man, his worldview and those who come into contact with him—it is “inspiration.” It resounds like a musical motif through his life and career. He inspires millions with his open-hearted, emotive playing in intimate recitals and on grand stages. Recent examples include the 2014 World Cup concert in Rio with Plácido Domingo; the 56th and 57th Grammy Award programs where he performed with Metallica and Pharrell Williams; the 2008 Opening Ceremony of the Beijing Olympics, watched by a billion people; and the Liszt 200th birthday concert with the Philadelphia Orchestra and Charles Dutoit, broadcast live in more than 500 movie theaters around the United States and Europe (the first classical music cinema cast to be headlined by a solo artist).
He forms enduring musical partnerships with the world’s greatest artists, from conductors such as Daniel Barenboim, Gustavo Dudamel and Sir Simon Rattle, to artists from outside of classical music, among them dubstep dancer Marquese Scott, king of the crooners Julio Iglesias and jazz titan Herbie Hancock. He builds relationships with corporations that expand classical music audiences, as well as cultural bridges between East and West, frequently introducing Chinese music to Western audiences and vice versa.
Yet he never forgets what first inspired him: great artists and, above all, the great composers—Liszt, Chopin and the others—whose music he delights in bringing to others. As a child, he was introduced to Liszt’s music by the famous Tom and Jerry cartoon “The Cat Concerto.” That childlike excitement at the discovery of music propels him to what he calls “his second career,” bringing music into the lives of children around the world through his work for the United Nations as a Messenger of Peace focusing on global education and through his Lang Lang International Music Foundation. As he inspires, he is inspired.
Time magazine named Lang Lang in the “Time 100,” citing him as a symbol of the youth of China and its future. Lang Lang is a cultural ambassador for Shenzhen and Shenyang. If the Chinese passion for piano isn’t solely due to him, he has played no small part as a role model—a phenomenon coined by the Today show as "the Lang Lang effect." For the first time, Steinway & Sons named a model after an artist when the company introduced the Lang Lang by Steinway Piano to China. It is specially designed for education.
The child Lang Lang, who is perhaps always with him, would surely have approved of the way he gives back to youth. He mentors prodigies and convenes 100 piano students in concert. He has dedicated his Lang Lang International Music Foundation to cultivating tomorrow’s top pianists, keeping music education at the forefront of technology and building a young audience.
Lang Lang has been featured on every major TV network and in magazines worldwide. He has performed for international dignitaries, including the Secretary-General of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon, four U.S. presidents, President Koehler of Germany, former French President Sarkozy and President François Hollande. He was recently honored to perform for President Obama and former President Hu Jintao of China at a White House State Dinner and for the Diamond Jubilee concert for Queen Elizabeth II at Buckingham Palace.
His honors include being named one of the World Economic Forum’s 250 Young Global Leaders; honorary doctorates from the Royal College of Music and Manhattan School of Music; and the highest prize awarded by China’s Ministry of Culture, Germany’s Order of Merit and France’s Medal of the Order of Arts and Letters. Visit www.langlang.com and www.langlangfoundation.org.
About Houston Symphony
During the 2014-15 season, the Houston Symphony enters its second century as one of America’s leading orchestras with a full complement of concert, community, education, touring and recording activities. This season also marks the inaugural year for new Music Director Andrés Orozco- Estrada. The Houston Symphony is one of the oldest performing arts organizations in Texas whose inaugural performance was held at The Majestic Theater in downtown Houston on June 21, 1913. Today, with an annual operating budget of $29 million, the full-time ensemble of 87 professional musicians is the largest performing arts organization in Houston, presenting more than 286 performances for 300,000 people, including 82,000 children, annually. For tickets and more information, please visit www.houstonsymphony.org or call (713) 224-7575.