Paul Lewis

Paul Lewis


Lewis embarks on a three-year journey into the music by three radical innovators of his instrument starting with Haydn, Beethoven and Brahms.

‘This was playing of intellectual rigour and imaginative vigour.’ Daily Telegraph (London)

There’s very little difference between Paul Lewis’s persona onstage and offstage. Direct, honest and intense, Paul Lewis goes straight to the heart of the matter. The transparency and candour of his playing pushes open a door into the music, allowing an intimate communion with the composer. Like his mentor Alfred Brendel, Lewis is more than a musician; his music-making is a philosophy in sound.

Lewis embarks on a three-year journey into the music by three radical innovators of his instrument. Joseph Haydn’s sonatas are among the first conceived for the brand new pianoforte, a series of cheeky experiments in texture and melody that set the stage for Beethoven’s own searching investigations. His late Bagatelles are some of the strangest pieces ever written for the piano – moment-by-moment they are lyrical, gruff, spiritual and perverse – and are Beethoven’s farewell to the instrument. The piano is central to Brahms’s work. Capable of both tempestuous emotion and tender restraint, the instrument is Brahms’s voice, expressing things that are beyond words.

Marshall McGuire, Director of Artistic Planning on Paul Lewis:

One 18th-century critic said of Haydn’s sonatas that they ‘demand the utmost precision and much delicacy in performance’. He might have imagined someone like Paul Lewis as their ideal interpreter. Join Lewis on a new adventure into the very soul of the piano.‘Paul Lewis embarks on journey into the soul of the piano in the unparalleled acoustic of the Elisabeth Murdoch Hall. His restrained elegance and his piercing insight will leave you wanting more.

Presented by Melbourne Recital Centre


Joseph Haydn
Piano Sonata in C, Hob.XVI:50
Piano Sonata in G Hob. XVI:40

Ludwig van Beethoven
Six Bagatelles Op.126

Johannes Brahms
Six pieces for piano Op.118


Join us for a pre-concert talk in Elisabeth Murdoch Hall from 6.45pm – 7.15pm.


He has commanding skills and intelligence to hold us spellbound by his vision of the works.

His technique rises readily to any pianistic challenges, and he wastes no effort on virtuosic display.