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Víkingur Ólafsson

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Biography

Icelandic pianist Víkingur Ólafsson began making his mark on the wider classical music world in the mid-2010s, after winning several major arts prizes in his homeland. Ólafsson began his studies at home in Iceland, then earned his bachelor's and master's degrees from Juilliard, where his primary teachers were Jerome Lowenthal and Robert McDonald. By 2017, he had premiered five piano concertos, working directly with composers such as Philip Glass, Daníel Bjarnason, and Haukur Tómasson, whose concerto he premiered during the 2016-2017 season. He has also collaborated on projects with visual artists such as Roman Signer and Lillevän, and musicians like Sayaka Shoji, Pekka Kuusisto, and Björk. Ólafsson's recital programs are thoughtfully assembled, linking music by theme, historical context, tonality, or a combination of elements. That kind of care and insight led him to host a TV series about classical music for the Icelandic National Broadcasting Service entitled Útúrdúr ("Out-of-tune," 2013-2014), and to him being named artistic director of Iceland's Vinterfest, taking over in 2016 from the music festival's founding director, Martin Fröst. Ólafsson is also founder and artistic director of the Reykjavik Midsummer Music festival. In November 2016, he signed an exclusive contract with Deutsche Grammophon, with his first release on the label -- Philip Glass: Piano Works -- appearing in January 2017. Prior to that, Ólafsson had recorded some of Stravinsky's solo piano music for the label, and he had released three albums on his own: two solo discs and Schubert's Winterreise with bass Kristinn Sigmundsson.
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Top Tracks

  1.   Track
    Popularity
  2.   Prelude and Fughetta in G major, BWV 902~Prelude
  3.   Harpsichord Concerto in D minor BWV 974 (After Alessandro Marcello's Oboe Concerto)~3. Presto
  4.   Glass: Études - No. 14
  5.   Sinfonia No. 15 in B minor BWV 801
  6.   Glass: Études - No. 20
  7.   J.S. Bach: Suite from the Partita No.3 in E Major for Solo Violin, BWV 1006 - 2. Gavotte (Transcr. by Sergey Rachmaninov)
  8.   Prelude In G Major
  9.   Harpsichord Concerto in D minor BWV 974 (After Alessandro Marcello's Oboe Concerto)~2. Adagio
  10.   Prelude, BWV 855a
  11.   Kyriena
  12.   Glass: Études - No. 13
  13.   J.S. Bach: Gottes Zeit ist die allerbeste Zeit, BWV 106 - 1. Sonatina (Transcr. for Piano Four Hands by György Kurtàg) by Halla Oddný Magnúsdóttir
  14.   Harpsichord Concerto in D minor BWV 974 (After Alessandro Marcello's Oboe Concerto)~1. Andante
  15.   Glass: Études - No. 5
  16.   Bach mit Zumutungen by Thomas Rabitsch
  17.   Chorale Prelude BWV 639 "Ich ruf zu dir, Herr Jesu Christ"
  18.   Sinfonia No. 12 in A major BWV 798
  19.   Invention No. 12 in A major BWV 783
  20.   Fantasia and Fugue in A minor BWV 904~Fantasia
  21.   Aria variata (alla maniera italiana) in A minor BWV 989~Aria
  22.   J.S. Bach: Nun komm der Heiden Heiland, Chorale Prelude BWV 659 (Transcr. by Ferruccio Busoni)
  23.   Prelude and Fugue in D major BWV 850 (The Well-Tempered Clavier, Book I, No. 5)~Prelude
  24.   Prelude and Fugue in E Minor BWV 855 (The Well-Tempered Clavier, Book I, No. 10)~Prelude
  25.   J.S. Bach: Prelude In E Minor, BWV 855 (Arr. Piano In B Minor By Alexander Siloti)
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