WASHINGTON — THREE contemporary piano concertos commissioned by the Steinway Foundation will have their premieres Thursday, June ll at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts .
The triple premieres mark the first event in "The 2lst Century Piano Project," sponsored by the pianomaker, an event designed to enhance the piano repertory with works that will attract audiences to the music of living composers. The three works are: Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 2, "Concerto of the Americas,' by Lalo Schifrin, performed by Cristina Ortiz; Piano Concerto No. 4 by Rodion Shchedrin, played by Nikolai Petrov; and Piano Concerto No. 2 by Lowell Liebermann, performed by Stephen Houg h.
Mr. Schifrin has scored more than l00 films and TV shows, won four Grammys, and six Oscar nominations. He is music director of the Paris Philharmonic. Mr. Shchedrin has composed ballets, symphonies, operas, concertos, and chamber music pieces. He is a USSR State Prize Winner, People's Artist of the USSR, and was Dmitri Shostakovich's successor as head of the Union of Composers of the Russian Republic. American composer Liebermann has had commissions from the Spoletto Festival, flutist James Galway, and t he St. Louis Symphony.
The event will be led by Mstislav Rostropovich, conducting the National Symphony Orchestra.