A key player in the Utah Symphony’s piano search comes to Abravanel Hall

First Published      Last Updated Apr 17 2015 05:07 pm

Pianist Inon Barnatan hasn't performed with the Utah Symphony before — but he's well-acquainted with the orchestra's piano.

He helped pick it out.

Barnatan joined a small Utah Symphony delegation, which also included principal keyboardist Jason Hardink and associate conductor Vladimir Kulenovic, at the Steinway & Sons factory in New York City last February. After the group narrowed 10 candidates down to two, Hardink told The Salt Lake Tribune, he and Barnatan tested each of the two finalists for about eight hours. (In this video, Barnatan is the man in the light gray sweater under a dark jacket; Hardink is wearing an open-collared black shirt and jeans, while Kulenovic has a black turtleneck and glasses.)

The winning piano, which made its Abravanel Hall debut at an April concert, is "very versatile and [has] a tremendous range," Hardink said. "It's also able to make a big sound when you need it."

Barnatan will perform Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 4 in three concerts this week with the Utah Symphony and guest conductor Matthias Pintscher. Also on the program are Pintscher's "towards Osiris" and Dvorak's Symphony No. 8.

When • Thursday, January 9, 7:30 p.m.

Where • Brigham Young University de Jong Concert Hall, Campus Drive and 1200 North, Provo

Tickets • $20; visit arts.byu.edu/events/2559

When • Friday and Saturday, Jan. 10-11, 8 p.m.

Where • Abravanel Hall, 123 W. South Temple, Salt Lake City

Tickets • $18-$55; visit bit.ly/1jfMrsg

Also • Barnatan will give a master class for University of Utah School of Music piano students at 4 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 8, in Libby Gardner Concert Hall, 1375 E. Presidents Circle, Salt Lake City. Admission is free to the public.