Ivo Pogorelić Brings Packed Hall of Kolarac to Its Feet at the 54th BEMUS

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On Monday, 7 November 2022, within the framework of the 54th BEMUS, Serbian world-famous pianist Ivo Pogorelić brought the audience to its feet in a long standing ovation in the sold-out Concert Hall of the Kolarac Endowment. One of the world's most sought-after pianists prepared an exceptional two-hour programme with compositions by Frédéric Chopin: Polonaise-fantaisie in A-flat major, Op. 61, ‘Piano Sonata No. 3 in B minor, Op. 58, ‘Fantaisie in F minor, Op. 49, ‘Berceuse in D-flat major, Op. 57, ‘Barcarolle in F-sharp major, Op. 60.  


For Pogorelić's concert, an extra ticket was requested days in advance. It was the most in-demand concert of this year’s BEMUS.


The performance was attended by numerous public and cultural figures, among whom were the Minister of Culture Maja Gojković and Damir Handanović, director of the Belgrade Festivals Centre (CEBEF), in which organization the BEMUS festival takes place. 


According to the New York Times, Pogorelić's concert performances are 200 years ahead of their time.


Born in Belgrade in 1958, he began his musical education in his hometown, and as an exceptional talent, he continued his education in Moscow, where he graduated from the prestigious ‘P. I. Tchaikovsky Conservatory’. A crucial influence on Pogorelić's artistic development, however, had his later, long-term collaboration with the prominent Georgian pianist Alisa Kezheradze. He was the winner of several international piano competitions, among which those in Terni (Italy, 1978) and Montreal (Canada, 1980) stand out, but his participation in the prestigious International Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw in 1980 was of particular importance in his biography, when he, as one of the favorites, was eliminated before the final stage of the competition. This controversial decision of one part of the jury caused a scandal, in which several members left the competition out of protest, while pianist Marta Argerich explained her personal decision to withdraw from the jury by stating that Pogorelić was a genius!  


Riding a wave of interest after the attention that he attracted at the Chopin Competition with his astonishing technique and innovative approach to the interpretation of literature, he began an intensive career with performances on the world's biggest music stages, as well as with renowned orchestras such as the Vienna and Berlin Philharmonic Orchestras, the London, Boston and Chicago Symphony Orchestras, the New York and Los Angeles Philharmonic, Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich, Concertgebouw Orchestra and numerous others.   


His performances in the world's prestigious venues (Carnegie Hall, Royal Festival Hall, Musikverein, Tonhalle, Teatro Colón, Suntori Hall, Elbphilharmonie, etc.) are accompanied by his commitment to studio recording. As an exclusive artist of Deutsche Grammophon, between 1981 and 1998, Pogorelić recorded 14 albums of anthological value, joined in a collection box set, which, upon release in 2015, brought him the French Diapason d'Or Award for overall contribution to classical music discography. After more than twenty years of dedication to live concerts, in 2019 he returned to the studio as an exclusive of the record company Sonny Classical with the long-awaited album containing sonatas by Beethoven and Rachmaninoff, which was nominated for a Grammy Award in the same year. At the beginning of 2022, his second album for this record label was released with recent interpretations of the works of Frederic Chopin. 


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