“A young cellist whose emotionally resonant performances of both traditional and contemporary music have earned her international recognition, ... Weilerstein is a consummate performer, combining technical precision with impassioned musicianship,” stated the MacArthur Foundation, when awarding American cellist Alisa Weilerstein a 2011 MacArthur Fellowship.
Entering her third season as Artistic Partner of the Trondheim Soloists, Alisa Weilerstein undertakes a tour in Germany with concerts in the Cologne Philharmonie, the Heidelberger Frühling as well as in Weiden, Celle and in the Frauenkirche Dresden.
Their first album together, 2018’s Transfigured Night released on Pentatone, features Schoenberg’s "Verklärte Nacht" and both Haydn cello concertos. It attracted unanimous praise, with Gramphone magazine proclaiming, “you’d go far to find performances of the Haydn concertos that match Alisa Weilerstein’s mix of stylistic sensitivity, verve and spontaneous delight in discovery.”
Beyond the strong connection with the Trondheim Soloists the highlights of the season include an ongoing partnership with the NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchester conducted by Alan Gilbert, the Cleveland Orchestra conducted by Mikhail Jurowsky, the Konzerthausorchester Berlin with Christoph Eschenbach, the Seattle Symphony Orchestra with Thomas Dausgaard, the Budapest Festival Orchestra with Gergely Madaras and an intensive collaboration with Rafael Payare, both with the Philharmonia Orchestra and the San Diego Symphony Orchestra.
Chamber music-wise, Alisa Weilerstein continues her long-standing partnership with the pianist Inon Barnatan and will be on a US tour with him playing the Beethoven Sonatas, including concerts in New York and San Francisco. She can also be heard with a solo recital in Boston.
„Alisa Weilerstein apparently can make her cello do anything she wants. On Tuesday night in Harris Hall, she applied extraordinarily flawless technique for nearly 3 hours and 30 minutes to some of the most profound music ever written for the instrument: Johann Sebastian Bach’s suites for unaccompanied cello, all six of them in one go, without hardly blinking.”Aspen Times, Harvey Steiman, August 2018
In recent years, Weilerstein recorded the Elgar and Elliott Carter cello concertos with Daniel Barenboim and the Staatskapelle Berlin. The disc was named “Recording of the Year 2013” by BBC Music, which featured the cellist on the cover of its May 2014 issue. Her release of Dvořák’s Cello Concerto with the Czech Philharmonic topped the U.S. classical chart. Her third album, a compilation of unaccompanied 20th-century cello music titled Solo, was pronounced an “uncompromising and pertinent portrait of the cello repertoire of our time” (ResMusica, France). Solo’s centerpiece is the Kodály sonata, a signature work that Weilerstein revisits on the soundtrack of If I Stay, a 2014 feature film starring Chloë Grace Moretz in which the cellist makes a cameo appearance as herself. In 2015 she released a recording of sonatas by Chopin and Rachmaninoff, marking her duo album debut with Inon Barnatan. And in 2016, Weilerstein released her album of Shostakovich’s two cello concertos with the Bavarian Radio Symphony under Pablo Heras-Casado.
Weilerstein’s career milestones include an emotionally tumultuous account of Elgar’s concerto with the Berlin Philharmonic and Barenboim in Oxford, England, and a performance at the White House for President and Mrs. Obama. An ardent champion of new music, she has worked on multiple projects with Osvaldo Golijov and Pintscher and premiered works by Lera Auerbach and Joseph Hallman. Weilerstein, whose honors include Lincoln Center’s 2008 Martin E. Segal prize and the 2006 Leonard Bernstein Award, is a graduate of the Cleveland Institute of Music and Columbia University. Diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, she is a Celebrity Advocate for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.
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