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Jon Nakamatsu

solo piano

Sunday Concert

In-person SOLD OUT. Livestream Tickets Available.

In-Person Sold Out. Livestream Tickets Available

In-Person Sold Out

  Buy Virtual Tickets

$15 for virtual tickets | $10 for members
Photo of pianist Jon Nakamatsu

Due to injury, pianist Joyce Yang has had to cancel her appearance at The Phillips Collection. Pianist Jon Nakamatsu has graciously stepped in to perform on this date. Program information can be found here on this event page.

In light of this change, we will contact all current ticket holders by email to offer the option to retain their tickets, exchange tickets for any performance in the 2022/23 season, or a full refund. Please contact the admissions desk at 202-387-2151 x 277 to confirm your preference.

After his unusual rise to international stardom, having won the Gold Medal in the prestigious Van Cliburn International Piano Competition while working as a high school German teacher, Jon Nakamatsu has maintained a decades long career as pianist, recording artist, and educator.

His program at this Phillips begins with Alban Berg’s chilling and reflective Sonata for Piano, written when the composer was at the end of his study with Arnold Schoenberg, turning to Frédéric Chopin’s enduring Fantasia in f-minor, and Johannes Brahms’s Sonata in F-minor, written when the composer was a mere twenty years old. Further highlights of Jon’s upcoming season include numerous solo and chamber music recitals across the United States and concerto engagements with the Wichita Falls Symphony, Santa Rosa Symphony, and Lansing Symphony among others.

During his multi-faceted career, Jon has recorded 13 critically praised CDs for Harmonia Mundi USA, serves as co-artistic director of the Cape Cod Chamber Music Festival, has been guest soloist with many of the world’s most celebrated orchestras, and is on the faculty of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.

This event will be broadcast live from the Music Room on Sunday, October 16 at 4 PM. To reserve a ticket, follow the link above to register. All registered ticket holders will receive a link directing them to a livestream webpage where the performance can be accessed. Ticket holders will be able to watch this performance “On Demand” for 48 hours following the broadcast time.

Now in his third decade of touring worldwide, American pianist Jon Nakamatsu continues to draw critical and public acclaim for his intensity, elegance and electrifying solo, concerto and chamber music performances. Catapulted to international attention in 1997 as the Gold Medalist of the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition—the only American to achieve this distinction since 1981—Mr. Nakamatsu subsequently developed a multi-faceted career that encompasses recording, education, arts administration and public speaking in addition to his vast concert schedule.

In the 2022-23 season Jon Nakamatsu will perform extensively in the U.S. both with orchestra, in recital, with the Schumann Quartet (Schumann Piano Quintet), with the Stanford Woodwind Quintet, with Jon Manasse, and also with Jennifer Frautschi and Jon Manasse. Nakamatsu’s orchestral engagements include those with the Wichita Falls Symphony, Santa Rosa Symphony, Lansing Symphony, Williamsburg Symphony, and others. His solo recitals include performances in San Francisco, San Jose, and Ashland, and other U.S. cities.

Last season, Mr. Nakamatsu returned to live performances throughout the United States and in Europe. Between 2020 and the spring of 2021, he was engaged in a myriad of online events including recording, masterclasses and virtual interviews and lectures for organizations such as the Chautauqua Institution Piano Festival, Colorado College Summer Music Festival, Boston University’s Tanglewood Institute, the Van Cliburn Foundation and the Chopin Foundation of the United States. In collaboration with clarinetist Jon Manasse, Mr. Nakamatsu also produced and curated an online series of interviews and historical performances taken from the archives of the Cape Cod Chamber Music Festival, where he and Mr. Manasse have served as Artistic Directors since 2007.

Mr. Nakamatsu has been guest soloist with over 150 orchestras worldwide, including those of Baltimore, Berlin, Boston, Cincinnati, Dallas, Detroit, Florence, Los Angeles, Milan, San Francisco, Seattle, Tokyo and Vancouver. He has worked with such esteemed conductors as Marin Alsop, Sergiu Comissiona, James Conlon, Philippe Entremont, Hans Graf, Marek Janowski, Raymond Leppard, Gerard Schwarz, Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, Michael Tilson Thomas and Osmo Vänskä.

As a recitalist, Mr. Nakamatsu has appeared in New York City’s Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center, Washington DC’s Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the Musée d’Orsay and the Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris and in major centers such as Boston, Chicago, Houston, London, Milan, Munich, Prague, Singapore, Warsaw and Zurich. In Beijing he has been heard at the Theater of the Forbidden City, the Great Hall of the People, China Conservatory, and the National Centre for the Performing Arts. His numerous summer engagements included appearances at the Aspen, Tanglewood, Ravinia, Caramoor, Vail, Wolftrap, Colorado, Brevard, Britt, Colorado College, Evian, Interlochen, Klavierfestival Ruhr, Santa Fe and Sun Valley festivals. In 2022 he will participate in an extended residency at the Bowdoin Festival in Maine and return to the Chautauqua Festival in New York where he has served as Artist in Residence since the summer of 2018. With clarinetist Jon Manasse, Mr. Nakamatsu tours as a member of the Manasse/Nakamatsu Duo.

Following its Boston debut in 2004, the Duo released its first CD for harmonia mundi usa (Brahms Sonatas for Clarinet and Piano) which received the highest praise from The New York Times Classical Music Editor James Oestreich, who named it among the “Best of the Year” for 2008. A frequent chamber musician, Mr. Nakamatsu has collaborated repeatedly with ensembles such as the Emerson, Escher, Jupiter, Miró, Modigliani, Prazak, St. Lawrence, Tokyo and Ying string quartets, the Imani Winds and the Berlin Philharmonic Wind Quintet with whom he made multiple tours beginning in 2000.

Mr. Nakamatsu’s 13 CDs recorded for harmonia mundi USA have garnered extraordinary critical praise. An all-Gershwin recording with Jeff Tyzik and the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra featuring Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue and Concerto in F remained in the top echelons of Billboard’s classical charts for over six months. Other acclaimed discs include the recording premiere of Lukas Foss’ first Piano Concerto with Carl St. Clair and the Pacific Symphony, the Brahms Piano Quintet with the Tokyo String Quartet in the quartet’s final recording as an ensemble, and a solo recording including Robert Schumann’s Second Piano Sonata whose YouTube posting has garnered over 500K hits.

Mr. Nakamatsu has been profiled extensively in print, radio, television and online. He has appeared on CBS Sunday Morning, in Readers Digest magazine and recently on Live from Here! with Chris Thile. In 1999, Mr. Nakamatsu performed at the White House at the special invitation of President and Mrs. Clinton. He has also performed for the United States Mayor’s Convention in San Francisco and in 2001 was the featured guest artist during the opening and dedication of the Japanese American Memorial to Patriotism During World War II in Washington DC.

A former high school teacher of German with no formal conservatory training, Mr. Nakamatsu studied privately with Marina Derryberry for over 20 years beginning at the age of six; worked with Karl Ulrich Schnabel since the age of 9; and trained for 10 years in composition, theory and orchestration with Dr. Leonard Stein of the University of Southern California’s Schoenberg Institute. Mr. Nakamatsu holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from Stanford University in German Studies and secondary education. In 2015, he joined the piano faculty of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and lives in the Bay Area with his wife Kathy and young son Gavin.

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