Pianist Nikita Mndoyants, the winner of the 2016 Cleveland International Piano Competition, is the next artist to perform on the Gilmore Keyboard Festival's Rising Stars Series, Sunday at 4 pm in the Wellspring Theater of the Epic Center, Kalamazoo. Born and trained in Russia, he talks to Cara Lieurance about how his teachers, including his father, Alexander Mndoyants, placed the highest emphasis on beautiful sound and touch at the keyboard. Mndoyants will perform three sonatas by Germanic composers Haydn, Beethoven, and Brahms, which he says almost amounts to the story of the progression of the sonata form.
Mndoyants will also perform one of his own solo pieces, Intermezzo. He tries to write pieces that remain interesting to work on -- if he is bored, then others will be too, Mndoyants says. A number of his chamber works, as well as a violin concerto, have been premiered at international festivals and concerts in the last few years.