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Ilya Yakushev (pianist) and Thomas Mesa (cellist)

Watch Video of Ilya Yakushev

Russian pianist Ilya Yakushev, with many awards and honors to his credit, continues to astound and mesmerize audiences at major venues on multiple continents. Winner of the World Piano Competition in Cincinnati in 2005, Ilya received his first award at age 12 at the Young Artists Concerto Competition in St. Petersburg. In 1997 he received the Mayor of St. Petersburg’s Young Talents award, and in both 1997 and 1998 he won First Prize at the Donostia Hiria International Piano Competition in San Sebastian, Spain. In 1998, he received a national honor, The Award for Excellence in Performance, presented to him by the Minister of Culture of the Russian Federation in Moscow. Ilya was a recipient of the prestigious Gawon International Music Society Award in Seoul, Korea. 

Ilya attended the Rimsky-Korsakov College of Music in St. Petersburg, Russia, and subsequently came to New York City to attend Mannes College of Music where he studied with legendary pianist Vladimir Feltsman. 

He has performed at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall (New York), Davies Symphony Hall (San Francisco), Glinka Philharmonic Hall in his native St. Petersburg, Russia, Victoria Hall (Singapore), and Sejong Performing Arts Center (Seoul, South Korea), among countless others. He has performed with internationally acclaimed orchestras, including the San Francisco Symphony, BBC Concert Orchestra, Boston Pops, Rochester Philharmonic, Utah Symphony, St. Petersburg Philharmonic, Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra, and many others. 

This season, Ilya will appear as piano soloist with the symphony orchestras of New Haven, El Paso, Dubuque, La Crosse, Lake Forest, and the Glacier Symphony. He performed at several prestigious summer music festivals in 2016, including Maverick Concerts (NY), Bellingham Festival of Music (WA), Summer Music from Greensboro (VT), and International Keyboard Institute & Festival (New York City), and played recitals in Worcester, MA and Lee University (Cleveland, TN). 

Highlights of Yakushev’s 2015-16 season included a return engagement with the St. Petersburg Philharmonic, as well as performances with the Reading and Fairfield County Symphonies. He also played recitals in Connecticut, Florida, New Jersey, and New York. In 2014, the British label Nimbus released his CD “Prokofiev Sonatas Vol. 1,” to which the American Record Guide wrote: “Yakushev is one of the very best young pianists before the public today, and it doesn’t seem to matter what repertoire he plays – it is all of the highest caliber.” Volume 2 was released in January 2017.


“Mr. Yakushev can do just about anything he wants . . . superb control, bringing the music to the brink of hysteria and the piano’s capacity for noise making, without ever letting it get away from him.””


“Yakushev moved through the 24 variations of the [Rachmaninoff] Rhapsody with some good-natured showmanship and enviable ease, leaving himself enough time to make eye contact with audience and orchestra every now and then. His pianism was energetic, witty and playful and the contrasts he created between the lighter and gloomier variations were profound . . . he rewarded the audience with a dreamy encore piece by Chopin.”


“An exuberantly outsized performance . . . a winning blend of rapturous lyricism and dramatic flair.”



“The young Russian pianist made an astounding triple debut as part of the San Francisco Symphony’s Prokofiev Festival, playing the First Concerto, the Fourth Concerto and the Seventh Sonata with vigor and virtuosity.”


 “When Ilya Yakushev began [Rachmaninoff’s Second Concerto] the rumbling passion that issued from the keyboard and infused the orchestra came as a relief . . . a beautiful performance [that] brought to mind Elton John.”

- TIMES UNION (Schenectady, NY)

“Musical pyrotechnics reached stratospheric heights [in] Mendelssohn’s hyper-virtuosic Piano Concerto No.1 . . . Ilya Yakushev generated clouds of notes at a stunning rate, yet each run, cascade, torrent seemed perfectly articulated . . . everything leaned forward to the madcap sprint in the final movement with Yakushev fire-walking up and down the keyboard and ultimately yanking the audience to a standing, cheering ovation.”

- THE TELEGRAM (Worcester, MA)


Date 01-28-2021 7:30 pm
Cut off date 01-28-2021
Individual Price $30.00
Richards Center for the Arts
2248 Ramon Rd, Palm Springs, CA 92264, USA Palm Springs, CA 92262
Richards Center for the Arts
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