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Hélène Grimaud cancels entire 2017 Australian tour

News - Classical Music | Instrumental

Hélène Grimaud cancels entire 2017 Australian tour

by Angus McPherson on November 17, 2016 (November 17, 2016) filed under Classical Music | Instrumental | Comment Now
The French pianist has cancelled her performances next year for personal reasons.

The Sydney Symphony Orchestra has announced that Japanese pianist Nobuyuki (Nobu) Tsujii will replace Hélène Grimaud in its 2017 season following the French pianist’s withdrawal. Grimaud, who came out to Australia this year to perform with the Australian Youth Orchestra, has cancelled her performances in May next year citing personal reasons.

Japanese pianist Nobuyuki (Nobu) Tsujii

Her replacement, Tsujii, was recently in the country for the SSO’s Beethoven Festival, performing Beethoven’s Third Piano concerto. “There was magic in the air when Tsujii performed with the Orchestra in October this year,” said SSO Managing Director Rory Jeffes, “and the overwhelming positive response both from our audiences and the SSO musicians themselves meant we wanted to invite him back to Sydney as soon as possible.”

Tsujii – who was born blind – will perform Chopin’s Piano Concerto No 2 with the SSO at the Sydney Opera House on May 19 and 20 and will also give a recital performance on May 22 at City Recital Hall Angel Place featuring Beethoven’s Appassionata and Moonlight sonatas and Bach’s Italian Concerto. All previously issued tickets sold as part of a package or package add-on for Hélène Grimaud’s Sydney concerts will now be valid on the same dates for the Tsujii performances.

“While we are disappointed Hélène Grimaud’s fans won’t have a chance to see her in 2017,” Jeffes said, “we are thrilled that Tsujii accepted our offer to perform once again with the SSO. These are concerts not to be missed.”

The SSO aren't the only ones to be left in the lurch. Grimaud was also due to perform with the West Australian Symphony Orchestra and at the Melbourne Recital Centre as part of their Great Performers series. The Melbourne Recital Centre have released a statement saying, “Melbourne Recital Centre regrets to advise that French pianist Hélène Grimaud has had to withdraw from her 2017 Australian tour due to personal reasons. We are currently in the process of identifying a suitable great performer to give a recital as part of the 2017 series. Tickets for this recital are still valid and we ask patrons to please hold on to their tickets until we announce the artist who will replace Ms. Grimaud. We apologise for any inconvenience this change of artist may have caused, and look forward to welcoming audiences to Melbourne Recital Centre in 2017 for another brilliant year of Great Performers.”