Collective Listening Project

Pianist Jan Lisiecki Selects

Playlist No. 9

About the Playlist

April 30, 2020
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Pianist Jan Lisiecki shares a selection of the music that brings him most joy, from Bach and Chopin to Pink Floyd and more. In addition, we can still experience a taste of the program that was originally planned on our series with baritone Matthias Goerne by listening to their newly-released recording of Beethoven songs, recorded for Deutsche Grammophon.


Johann Sebastian Bach: Aria from Goldberg Variations, BWV 988, played by Glenn Gould

Many people automatically associate “Canadian pianist” with Glenn Gould, Glenn Gould with Bach, and his recordings with those of the Goldberg Variations. His playing is emotional, revolutionary, and instantly recognizable. I love listening to his Goldberg Variations, they take me on a journey to another dimension—and Bach today has particular relevance, when one realizes he wrote this music at a time during which our current worries would be unimaginable.

Frédéric Chopin: Concertos No. 1 in E Minor, Op. 11 and No. 2 in F Minor, Op. 21, played by Krystian Zimerman & Polish Festival Orchestra

I grew up with this recording, as my parents enjoyed it frequently. Zimerman’s sound is inspirational, and I love how he truly “lives” the music”—making it his own. While my interpretation is quite different from his, listening to other recordings after you’ve experienced music onstage yourself makes you discover completely new things.

Pink Floyd: Wish You Were Here

I love Pink Floyd, and of course this is one of the most iconic albums ever. I relate to some of the lyrics from this recording, and it’s music that I am easily fully immersed in.

Yann Tiersen: Amélie Original Soundtrack

If I ever need something to lift my spirits, this is it… I find that both the music and the movie’s storyline have a magical quality to them—and I have always dreamed of playing the accordion.

Jan Garbarek: Twelve Moons

My parents listened to a lot of jazz: this album was a favorite of theirs and, growing up with it, has become one of mine as well—a great way to end a day.