top of page


WEDNESDAY, JUNE 26 | 9:00 PM | Municipal Auditorium

Elisabeth Leonskaja, piano

For decades now, Elisabeth Leonskaja has been among the most celebrated pianists of our time. In a world dominated by the media, Elisabeth Leonskaja has remained true to herself and to her music, and in doing so, is following in the footsteps of the great Russian musicians of the Soviet era, such as David Oistrakh, Sviatoslav Richter and Emil Gilels, who never wavered in their focus on the quintessence of music despite working in a very difficult political environment. Her almost legendary modesty still makes her somewhat media-shy today. Yet as soon as she walks out on the stage, audiences can sense the force behind the fact that music is and always has been her life’s work.

 Born in Tbilisi, Georgia, to a Russian family, she gave her first concerts as early as age 11. Her exceptional talent soon brought her to study at the Moscow Conservatory.

While still a student at the Conservatory, she won prizes in the prestigious Enescu, Marguerite Long and Queen Elizabeth international piano competitions. 

Elisabeth Leonskaja’s musical development was shaped or influenced to a decisive degree by her collaboration with Sviatoslav Richter. The master recognized her exceptional talent and fostered her development not only through teaching and musical advice, but also by inviting her to play numerous duets with him. A memorable musical event! The musical partnership and personal friendship between Sviatoslav Richter and Elisabeth Leonskaja endured until Richter’s death in the year 1997. In 1978 Elisabeth Leonskaja left the Soviet Union and made her new home in Vienna. Her sensational performance at the Salzburg Festival in 1979 marked the beginning of her steadily blossoming career as a concert pianist in the west.

In addition to her many solo engagements, chamber music remains an important part of her work. She has performed many times with string quartets, such as the Belcea, Borodin Artemis and Jerusalem quartets. She also had a longstanding musical friendship with the Alban Berg Quartet, and their piano quintet recordings are legendary.

Numerous recordings bear testimony to the outstanding artistic achievements of this pianist and she has been awarded prizes such as the Caecilia Prize for her Brahms piano sonatas, or the Diapason d´Or for her recordings of works by Liszt. Other significant recordings include the Tchaikovsky Piano Concertos with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra under Kurt Masur, the Chopin Piano Concertos with the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra under Vladimir Ashkenazy, and the Shostakovich Piano Concertos with the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra.

Her recording “Paris”, released by eaSonus, with works by Ravel, Enescu and Debussy, was named the Solo Recording of the Year 2014 by the ICMA Jury. “Saudade”, an homage to Russian culture with works by Tchaikovsky, Shostakovich and Rachmaninoff, was released in November 2017. A complete recording of Franz Schubert’s piano sonatas in two volumes of four CDs each has been available since April 2016 and May 2019 respectively. A double-CD with variations and sonatas by Robert Schumann followed in January 2020. Since 2021 a new recording relationship has begun with WARNER. A Mozart Sonatas Cycle and the Beethoven Concertos nr 3 and 4 have been released already. The Schumann and Grieg piano concertos and a recording of the works for piano solo of the 2nd Viennese school will follow.

In her second homeland, Austria, Elisabeth Leonskaja is an honorary member of the Vienna Konzerthaus. In 2006 she was awarded the Austrian Cross of Honor for Science and Art, First Class, for her outstanding service to the culture of the country. It is the highest award in Austria. In Georgia, she was named Priestess of Art in 2016, this country’s highest artistic honor. In 2020 she received the International Classical Music (ICMA) Lifetime Achievement Award.

Kandinsky Quartet

The Kandinsky Quartet, prize winners of the International Mozart Competition Salzburg and the Boccherini Competition, as well as Scholars of Jeunesse Musicales Germany and Villa Musica, was founded in 2020 and is based in Vienna. They have been invited to festivals like Festival d’Aix-en Provence (France), Styrian Chamber Music Festival (Austria), Brac Classic (Croatia), Milano Musica (Italy), Stars and Rising Stars (Germany), Festival Música Sur (Spain) and Heidelberger Frühling (Germany).

In July 2023, they have been awarded the Verbier Anniversary Prize after a successful participation at the Verbier Festival Academy. Also, they are part of Le Dimore del Quartetto and and have been selected for the EU-funded program MERITA. Furthermore, they are artists in residence within the framework of the annual summer cycle ArbeiterInnenkonzerte in Vienna, an outreach-project with social housing with ten concerts per season. 

They have performed and gathered experience with prestigious string quartets such as Arditti Quartet, Kuss Quartet, Ysaÿe Quartet, Cuarteto Casals, Danel Quartet, Artis Quartet, Mosaïques Quartet, Quatuor Diotima or Alban Berg Quartet, alongside with soloists and prominent figures of the international chamber music scene, such Nicolas Altstaedt, Bruno Giuranna, Amihai Grosz, Dirk Mommertz, Mathieu Herzog and Gabor Takacs-Nagy and Elisabeth Leonskaja, which as their mentor regularly invites them to share the stage with her. 

Currently they are studying with Johannes Meissl at the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna and started their masters program with Quatuor Ébène at the University of Music and Performing Arts Munich in October 2022. 

Engagements for season 23/24 include performances in the hall of the Besední dům (Brno), Auditiorio Manuel de Falla (Granada) and festivals like Archipelago (Italy), Atrium Musicae (Spain), Festival Inventio (France), AJAM (France), and Rheingau Festival (Germany).

Kandinsky Quartet  are: 

  • Hannah Kandinsky, violín

  • Israel Ignacio Gutiérrez Vildósola, violín

  • Ignazio Alayza, viola

  • Antonio Gervilla, violoncello

  • Dominik Wagner, double bass, will accompany the Kandinsky Quartet and Elisabeth Leonskaja performing Schubert Quintet “The Trout”


Dominik Wagner, double bass

"Born in 1997 in Vienna, Dominik Wagner takes Bottesini's tonal beauty, vocal and melodic attractiveness so passionately seriously, and masters the required artistry with such breathy lightness that one would think the double bass is the softest-sounding and most virtuosic string instrument."

In just his mid-20s, Wagner is a scholarship recipient of the Anne-Sophie Mutter Foundation and an ECHO Klassik winner. In 2022, he was awarded the Opus Klassik as Young Talent of the Year. He has also won prizes in almost all double bass competitions, including the Bradetich Foundation International Double Bass Solo Competition, the ARD International Music Competition, and the Eurovision Young Musicians Competition.

Dominik Wagner has already performed with renowned orchestras such as the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, the WDR Symphony Orchestra, the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, the Zurich Chamber Orchestra, and the Camarata Salzburg in concert halls in Berlin (Konzerthaus and Philharmonie), Vienna (Musikverein and Konzerthaus), Munich (Herkulessaal and Gasteig), Hamburg (Elbphilharmonie), and New York (Carnegie Hall), among others. He is associated with the Württemberg Chamber Orchestra as a WKO Young Artist.

In addition to his solo activities, Dominik is a passionate chamber musician. He has played with musicians like the Emerson String Quartet, the Danish String Quartet, Isabel Faust, Tabea Zimmermann, Gerhard Schulz, and Elisabeth Leonskaja.

Dominik Wagner first learned the cello before switching to the double bass in 2007. His four years in the concert choir of the Vienna Boys Choir were a formative musical influence. From 2009 to 2015, he studied at the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna, and from 2015 to 2022, he studied with Prof. Dorin Marc at the University of Music Nürnberg. Since 2023, he has been part of the Professional Studies program of the Kronberg Academy.


R. Schuman (1810-1856) :: Quinteto para piano e cordas Op. 44

I. Allegro brillante

II. In modo d`una marcia. Un poco largamente

III. Scherzo: Molto vivace

IV. Allegro ma non troppo

F. Schubert (1797-1828) :: Quinteto para piano e cordas en La maior, D. 667 "A troita"

I. Allegro vivace

II. Andante

III. Scherzo (Presto)

IV. Tema (Andantino) con variazioni I - VI

V. Finale (Allegro giusto)

bottom of page