Rachmaninoff Festival: Second Piano Concerto and Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini

The New York Philharmonic

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Second Piano Concerto and Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini


David Geffen Hall

Price Range



1 hour & 45 minutes with intermission

No Late Seating
Date & Times


Nov, 2015

Wednesday, 7:30 PM


Nov, 2015

Thursday, 7:30 PM


Nov, 2015

Friday, 8:00 PM


Nov, 2015

Saturday, 8:00 PM


Nov, 2015

Tuesday, 7:30 PM

Event Info

Part of Rachmaninoff: A Philharmonic Festival

You'll recognize Rachmaninoff's Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini from Groundhog Day, when Bill Murray used it to melt Andie MacDowell’s heart. In The Seven Year Itch, the Second Piano Concerto plays in a dream sequence to woo Marilyn Monroe. But there’s more than just swoon-worthy melodies in these Rachmaninoff favorites: virtuosic fireworks abound too, especially in the hands of 24-year-old dynamo Daniil Trifonov.

The November 12 performance will be broadcast live on WQXR, New York’s classical station, at 105.9 FM and wqxr.org at 7:30 p.m. After the November 14 concert, Daniil Trifonov will sign copies of his CD Rachmaninov Variations in the David Geffen Hall lobby.

Read about Daniil Trifonov in The Times (London)



The Isle of the Dead



Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini



Piano Concerto No. 2


Cristian Măcelaru


Cristian Măcelaru



Winner of the 2014 Solti Conducting Award, Cristian Măcelaru is conductor-in-residence of The Philadelphia Orchestra, with which he made his unexpected subscription debut in April 2013. He has since conducted four of its subscription programs, and leads another in the 2015–16 season. Other season highlights include his Lincoln Center debut at the Mostly Mozart Festival, as well as this New York Philharmonic debut. He returns to the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, and National Symphony Orchestra. Internationally, he makes debuts with the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Frankfurt Radio Symphony, Rotterdam Philharmonic, City of Birmingham Symphony, Royal Scottish National, Dublin’s RTE National Symphony, and Tokyo’s Metropolitan Symphony orchestras. In North America, his debuts include the Atlanta, Cincinnati, New World, and San Diego symphony orchestras, Minnesota Orchestra, and National Arts Centre Orchestra. 

Cristian Măcelaru made his first appearance at Carnegie Hall in 2012, leading a work alongside Valery Gergiev in a Georg Solti Centennial Celebration, and in 2015 he made his full Carnegie debut leading the Danish National Symphony Orchestra with violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter. In June 2015 he made his Cincinnati Opera debut in highly acclaimed performances of Verdi’s Il Trovatore.

An accomplished violinist from an early age, Christian Măcelaru was the youngest concertmaster in the history of the Miami Symphony Orchestra, and played in the first violin section of the Houston Symphony for two seasons. After participating in the conducting programs of the Tanglewood Music Center and the Aspen Music Festival and School, he received the Sir Georg Solti Emerging Conductor Award in 2012. He completed undergraduate studies in violin performance at the University of Miami and subsequently studied with Larry Rachleff at Rice University, where he received master’s degrees in conducting and violin performance.

Learn more about Cristian Măcelaru

Daniil Trifonov


Daniil Trifonov


Daniil Trifonov by Dario Acosta


Russian pianist Daniil Trifonov — named Gramophone’s 2016 Artist of the Year — has made a spectacular ascent as a solo artist, champion of the concerto repertoire, collaborator at the keyboard in chamber music and song, and composer. His 2017–18 season focus on the music of Chopin includes the release of Chopin Evocations, his fourth album as an exclusive Deutsche Grammophon artist, marking his first foray into a new repertoire with works of 20th-century composers influenced by the Polish master, including Samuel Barber and Federico Mompou. This season Mr. Trifonov gives more than 20 recitals on the theme across the United States, Europe, and Asia, including at Carnegie Hall as part of the seven-concert, season-long Perspectives series he curates. Three of the concerts are devoted to Chopin and his influence: the solo recital and two all-Chopin programs with cellist Gautier Capuçon and the Kremerata Baltica. Others include collaborations with baritone Matthias Goerne and Mr. Trifonov’s teacher Sergei Babayan, the latter capping a U.S. tour that includes the world premiere of a Carnegie-commissioned work for two pianos by Mauro Lanza; a performance of his own piano concerto with Valery Gergiev leading the Mariinsky Orchestra, again culminating a U.S. tour; and a solo recital in Zankel Hall. He curates similar series at the Vienna Konzerthaus and in San Francisco, concluding with a season-closing Rachmaninoff performance with the San Francisco Symphony.

Other season highlights include European tours with violinist Gidon Kremer and Kremerata Baltica and the London Philharmonic, Royal Concertgebouw, and Teatro alla Scala orchestras. Further appearances include Richard Strauss’s Burleske with the Spanish National and Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestras; Schumann’s Piano Concerto with Lisbon’s Gulbenkian Orchestra and Berlin Philharmonic; Prokofiev with the Mariinsky and Cleveland Orchestras; Scriabin’s Piano Concerto with the Seattle Symphony; his own piano concerto with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra; and Rachmaninoff with the Munich Philharmonic, Toronto Symphony, and Philadelphia orchestras.

Learn more about Daniil Trifonov

Special Thanks

Major support for these concerts is provided by Laura Chang and Arnold Chavkin.

Cristian Măcelaru's appearance is made possible through the Daisy and Paul Soros Endowment Fund.

The November 12 performance of The Isle of the Dead is graciously sponsored by Kimberly V. Strauss.

For November 12 Radio Broadcast, Daniil Trifonov appears courtesy Deutsche Grammophon Gesellschaft.


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