Paul Kildea live on stage

Internationally acclaimed musician and author Paul Kildea will give an illustrated lecture, with piano accompaniment, on his critically acclaimed book, Chopin's Piano: A Journey Through Romanticism. Sovereign Films in London has acquired global film rights.

Chopin's Piano is part cultural history and part detective story, in which Kildea takes the reader on an unexpected journey through musical Romanticism, allowing us to reflect freshly on the changing meaning of music over time.

It begins in 1838 when Frédéric Chopin, seeking to escape the harsh Parisian winter, travels to Majorca with his lover George Sand. Here, Chopin composes many of his famous 24 Preludes, on a pianino made by local craftsman Juan Bauza. Paul Kildea follows the composition of the Preludes, how the piano came to be owned by the great keyboard player and musical thinker, Wanda Landowska, and what happened after it was seized by Nazis in the early 1940s.

Kildea has said: "I wanted to write a meditation on Romanticism, creativity, and the changing meaning of music over two centuries of revolution, war, industrialization, nationalism and murderous xenophobia. It is a mighty canvas".

'Chopin's Piano is an exceptionally fine book: erudite, digressive, urbane and deeply moving.' The Wall Street Journal

Paul Kildea became Artistic Director of Musica Viva, Australia in mid-2019. Originally from Canberra, Kildea has held a number of artistic leadership positions, among them Head of Music at the Aldeburgh Festival in Suffolk from 1999 to 2002, Artistic Director of London's Wigmore Hall from 2003 to 2005, and Artistic Director of the Four Winds Festival in Bermagui.

Paul Kildea holds a doctorate from Oxford University in addition to degrees in piano performance and musicology from The University of Melbourne, where he is now an Honorary Principal Fellow.

The event will be introduced by Associate Professor Kim Cunio, Head of the School of Music ANU and the vote of thanks given by Emeritus Professor Malcolm Gillies AM.

Pre-event book signings will be available from 5:30pm and again after the event. This event is in association with Harry Hartog Bookshop and books will be available to purchase.