Pianist Philip Edward Fisher, is a UK native now based in New York city. A champion of new music, he will be recording the Corigliano Piano concerto later this year. My discussion with Philip includes such important topics, as peak performance, creating a connection with the audience, and his experience playing the Shostakovich 2nd concerto, for his son Maxim Shostakovich.
International tours as a prolific soloist and ensemble musician have taken Philip across his native United Kingdom to Italy, Austria, Denmark, Finland, Switzerland, Norway, Kenya, Zimbabwe, the Ukraine, and United States. 2002 marked his New York debut at Alice Tully Hall, performing Rachmaninov’s Third Piano Concerto under the baton of Maestro Larry Rachleff. His debut CD with the Naxos label, Handel Keyboard Suites Vol. 1, was released in early 2010 to great critical acclaim and hit the US Classical Billboard Chart within the first week of its release. Volume 2 of the set was released in 2015 to further acclaim. His release on the Chandos label, Piano Works by The Mighty Handful, was featured on Classic FM as John Suchet’s “Album of the Week”, as “Classical Album of the Week” in The Telegraph, and has been nominated in the “Best Solo Instrumental Album” category of the International Classical Music Awards 2012.
Philip has appeared in-concert at Merkin Hall and Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center, and his United Kingdom credits include performances at the Purcell Room, Wigmore Hall, Barbican Centre and Royal Festival Hall in London, Usher Hall in Edinburgh, the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall, and Symphony Hall in Birmingham. He has performed concertos with, amongst others, the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, the Copenhagen Philharmonic, the Tampere Philharmonic, and the Toledo and Juilliard Symphonies, working with conductors such as Hannu Lintu, John Axelrod, Larry Rachleff, James Lowe and Giordano Bellincampi. Recent highlights have included an appearance at the “International Classical Music Awards” in Tampere, Finland, as the representative artist for the Chandos label.
Dedicated to the performance of new music, Philip has given local and national premieres of numerous contemporary pieces and has worked in close collaboration with prominent composers such as Ronald Stevenson, Thomas Ades, and Arvo Pärt. In February 2006, Philip partook in the New York Miniaturist Ensemble’s innovative concert series, unveiling the world-premiere performance of Karlheinz Stockhausen’s First Natural Durations for solo piano, and he has also appeared at the New York Focus! Festival at Lincoln Center.
Additionally known for his unique chamber music abilities, Philip has become a highly sought-after ensemble performer. He has collaborated with renowned performers and ensembles such as The Brodsky Quartet, tenor Robert White, pianist Sara Buechner, violinists Elmar Oliviera, Philippe Graffin and Augustin Hadelich, and Principal Trombonist of the New York Philharmonic, Joseph Alessi. Philip has appeared at Music@Menlo, the Beethoven Chamber Music Festival and the Kyoto International Music Festival in Japan. He has been heard on New York’s WQXR and Boston’s WGBH, BBC’s Radio 3, Classic FM, and has appeared on Ukrainian Television, the BBC, and MTV.
He graduated from The Juilliard School in May of 2006, earning his Master’s degree as a student of Joseph Kalichstein and Jerome Lowenthal. In 2001, Philip was granted the Julius Isserlis Scholarship by the Royal Philharmonic Society of London, the largest and most prestigious award of its kind currently available to a British musician, branding the young man with a mark of distinction as one of the finest breakout talents in the UK.
Philip Edward Fisher began his musical training at the age of nine, and made his first public appearance only a year later. His concerto debut followed aged 12, performing Shostakovich’s Second Concerto at Birmingham’s Symphony Hall. During this time, he studied with the concert pianist and composer, Philip Martin. In 1993, Philip was named a recipient of the John Ogdon Memorial Scholarship, enabling his musical studies to continue at the Purcell School. That same year, Philip was accepted into the studio of Professor Christopher Elton, Head of Keyboard at the Royal Academy of Music in London. During his studies at the Royal Academy, he was also guided by pedagogues Alexander Satz, Boris Berman, Stephen Kovacevich and Stephen Hough.
An example of the Messiaen Turangalila Symphony Philip references in the podcast.
The Chopin 3rd sonata, where Philip experienced his first peak performance moment.
Maria Callas in Tosca, one of Philip’s favorite performances
Baritone Tito Gobbi’s masterful performance.