Composer Hannah Lash
Music and Opera reporting on is made possible by The University of North Texas College of Music.
Select the link below to discover more.

2017-2018 for The Cliburn

The Cliburn season features gold medalist Yekwon Sunwoo, plus a number of women musicians and composers.

published Saturday, July 29, 2017

Photo: Julien Faugère
Pianist Janina Fialkowska


The Cliburn announced its 2017-18 season, following this year's 15th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. The winner, South Korean Yekwon Sunwoo, will have the big concert slot at Bass Hall in October. As with last year, the rest of the series happens at the Kimbell Art Museum and the Modern Art Museum. It's a great line-up that features a higher number of women musicians and composers than we typically see in a classical series of this size. These include cellist Alisa Weilerstein, pianist Janina Fialkowska, mezzo-soprano Isabel Leonard, and composer Hannah Lash.


Below is the complete season:

The Cliburn announces its 2017–2018 Cliburn Concerts season, the 41st year of its signature annual recital series. Subscriptions—which are, for the first time, entirely choose-your-own packages—are on sale now.

The season opens with the return of 2017 Gold Medalist Yekwon Sunwoo to Bass Hall on October 3, just four months after his Competition victory and as he sets out on his first Cliburn concert tour around the world as part of his prize package. The two Cliburn at the Kimbell series—Masters and Virtuosos—boast an array of long-awaited Cliburn Concerts debuts with cellist Alisa Weilerstein, mezzo-soprano Isabel Leonard, pianist Igor Levit, and violinist Ray Chen, as well as the return of two of the most esteemed pianists of our time in rare intimate venue appearances: Janina Fialkowska and Emanuel Ax. Cliburn at the Modern, which focuses solely on the music of living American composers, will feature the work of Hannah Lash, as well a special showcase of “American Showpieces.”

For the first time, Cliburn Concerts are choose-your-own. Patrons may select anywhere from four to seven of the performances at Bass Hall or the Kimbell to create their own season. Prices range from $95–$350 for four concerts; $115–$400 for five concerts; $130–$450 for six concerts; and $145–$500 for seven concerts. Cliburn at the Modern subscriptions are available separately and are $40 for the two-concert series.

Tickets can be purchased online at, by calling 817.212.4240, or in person at the Bass Hall Box Office (525 Commerce Street, Fort Worth, TX). Single tickets to all concerts will go on sale in early September.


See below for bios and concert descriptions.

Cliburn at the Bass performances begin at 7:30 p.m. at Bass Performance Hall, located at 4th & Calhoun Streets in downtown Fort Worth’s historic Sundance Square


Photo: Ralph Lauer/The Cliburn
Pianist Yekwon Sunwoo

Tuesday, OCTOBER 3, 2017
works by Mozart, Schubert, Ravel 

On June 10, 2017, 28-year-old Yekwon Sunwoo of South Korea was named gold medalist of the Fifteenth Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. An alumnus of three major American conservatories (Curtis, Juilliard, and Mannes), he has been hailed for “his total command over the instrument and its expressiveness” (San Francisco Examiner). Come warmly welcome this champion back to the Bass Hall stage as he begins his first Cliburn concert tour, which takes him around the world in recital and with orchestra this season, including to Chicago, Los Angeles, Brussels, and Seoul.


All Cliburn at the Kimbell performances begin at 7:30 p.m. at the Piano Pavilion of the Kimbell Art Museum, located at 3333 Camp Bowie Blvd., in Fort Worth's Cultural District.

Thursday & Friday, OCTOBER 19 & 20, 2017 | 7:30 p.m.

Two of today’s most exciting young artists are a dream team in their acclaimed recitals together. Cellist Alisa Weilerstein’s impassioned performance style, breathtaking technique, and commitment to new music helped earn her a MacArthur “genius” award at age 29. She has met her musical match in Inon Barnatan, a poet of the keyboard whose sincerity and expressiveness rival his astonishing technical abilities. When these two artists come together, says the Denver Post, “they bring urgency, intensity, and edginess … there is no playing it safe.”


Thursday & Friday, FEBRUARY 1 & 2, 2018 | 7:30 p.m.
All-Chopin program

Janina Fialkowska came to prominence as a protégé of Arthur Rubinstein and a laureate of the First Arthur Rubinstein International Piano Master Competition. Today, she carries on that master’s legacy as one of the leading interpreters of Chopin in the world. Her all-Chopin program will bring the composer into clear focus as only Janina Fialkowska can. As The New Yorker says, “Fialkowska plays Chopin with a warmth, poetry, and detail of phrasing that is disappointingly rare today; she places her gifts at the composer’s feet.”


Thursday & Friday, APRIL 26 & 27, 2018 | 7:30 p.m.
works by Mozart, Bach, Beethoven, Liszt 

Emanuel Ax is in the top rank of international piano stars, with a career that has taken him to every major venue and orchestra in the world. His return to Fort Worth—in this lovely smaller venue—will be an extraordinary treat for local piano lovers. “His greatness, his overwhelming authority as musician, technician, and probing intellect emerges quickly as he plays,” says the Los Angeles Times. “Within minutes, we are totally captured by his intensity and pianistic achievement.”


All Cliburn at the Kimbell performances begin at 7:30 p.m. at the Piano Pavilion of the Kimbell Art Museum, located at 3333 Camp Bowie Blvd., in Fort Worth's Cultural District.


Photo: Dario Acosta
Mezzo-soprano Isabel Leonard

ISABEL LEONARD, mezzo-soprano
Thursday, NOVEMBER 16, 2017 | 7:30 p.m.
works by Leonard Bernstein 

“The vocal and physical beauty, the natural stage charisma, the sure dramatic instincts, to win all hearts from the outset.” — Chicago Tribune

With her “chocolatey mezzo-soprano” (Opera News), Isabel Leonard, this star who dazzled audiences in Fort Worth Opera’s Cinderella and Santa Fe Opera’s world premiere of Cold Mountain, has quickly become one of the world’s leading vocal artists. Experience this radiant performer in a recital of songs by American master Leonard Bernstein, as we honor the centennial of his birth. It’s a perfect program to highlight Leonard’s theatrical chops—and one of the luminous voices of our age. 


Thursday, JANUARY 11, 2018 | 7:30 p.m. 

“He is set to be one of this century’s big names.” — London Telegraph

“A major new pianist has arrived.” — The New York Times

The accolades are piling up fast for this young Russian-born German pianist. He won Gramophone’s Recording of the Year 2016 award. After his sold-out Carnegie Hall debut in February 2017, The New York Times proclaimed him “one of the essential artists of his generation.” Igor Levit is one of those forceful performers who makes an instant strong impression on audiences, with original, bracing takes on beloved repertoire. In a world full of impressive young pianists, find out why he is pulling away from the pack.


RAY CHEN, violin + JULIO ELIZALDE, piano
Thursday, MARCH 29, 2018 | 7:30 p.m.
works by Beethoven, Saint-Saëns, Ysaye 

“Colors dance, moods swing, and Chen’s artistry blazes.” — The Times

After winning the Queen Elisabeth and Yehudi Menuhin competitions, this young violinist is forging an international career as an exceptional classical-music communicator, expanding the art form’s reach with his approachability and captivating stage presence. And he possesses the virtuosity and musicianship to match. As The Washington Post raved: “Ray Chen can do pretty much anything he wants on the violin.”


All Cliburn at the Modern concerts are conversations moderated by Shields-Collins Bray and begin at 2:00 p.m. at the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, located at 3200 Darnell St., in Fort Worth's Cultural District.


Photo: Hannah Lash
Composer Hannah Lash

Saturday, NOVEMBER 4, 2017 | 2:00 p.m.

Pianists Shields-Collins Bray, Catharine Lysinger, Alex McDonald, Evan Mitchell, and Jonathan Tsay take on some of American classical music’s greatest hits. In this special afternoon showcase, revel in performances of pieces by John Corigliano, Frederic Rzewski, Aaron Jay Kernis, and David Del Tredici, as well as the 1981 Cliburn Competition commission of Leonard Bernstein’s “Touches.”


HANNAH LASH, composer
Saturday, APRIL 14, 2018 | 2:00 p.m. 

The New York Times called American composer and harpist Hannah Lash’s work “striking and resourceful…handsomely brooding,” raving “you hoped to hear it again.” And artists have certainly agreed; her works have been commissioned by numerous orchestras and string quartets, including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Minnesota Orchestra and JACK Quartet, and performed at the country’s top venues, such as Carnegie Hall, Disney Concert Hall, (Le) Poisson Rouge, Tanglewood Music Center, and Aspen Music Festival. Thanks For Reading

View the Article Slideshow
Click or Swipe to close
2017-2018 for The Cliburn
The Cliburn season features gold medalist Yekwon Sunwoo, plus a number of women musicians and composers.
by Mark Lowry

Share this article on Facebook
Tweet this article
Share this article on Google+
Share this article via email
Click or Swipe to close
Click or Swipe to close
views on theater, dance, classical music, opera and comedy performances
news & notes
reports from the local performing arts scene
features & interviews
who and what are moving and shaking in the performing arts scene
season announcements
keep up with the arts groups' upcoming seasons
listen to interviews with people in the local performing arts scene
media reviews
reviews and stories on performing arts-related film, TV, recordings and books
arts organizations
learn more about the local producing and presenting arts groups
performance venues
learn more about the theaters and spaces where the arts happen
keep up with fabulous ticket giveaways and other promotions
connect to local arts crowdfunding campaigns
post or view auditions and performing arts-related classes, services, jobs and more
about us
info on TheaterJones, our staff, what we do and how to contact us
Click or Swipe to close
First Name:
Last Name:
Date of Birth:
ZIP Code:
Your Email Address:
Click or Swipe to close
Join TheaterJones Around the Web

Follow Us on Twitter

Subscribe to our Youtube Channel

Click or Swipe to close
Search the TheaterJones Archives
Use any or all of the options below to search through all of reviews, interviews, features and special sections. If you are looking for a an event, use the calendar section of this website. This search will not search through the calendar.
Article Title Search:

Description Search:
TheaterJones Contributor:

TheaterJones Section:

Showing on or after:      Showing on or before:  
Click or Swipe to close
We welcome your comments

I am discussing:  

Your Name:
Your Email Adress:

please enter the text below and then click or tap SUBMIT :