December is the busiest month for most musicians, what with all the Nutcrackers, Messiahs, and Christmas concerts. I used to list all of them in our calendar, but it just did not seem worth it this year, so I have listed only the ones of some interest to me. As for what makes the cut for the Top 10 concerts we most want to hear this month, the leading contenders for the coveted Ionarts Best Christmas Concert Award are included.
Definitely worth the trip to Charm City this month is the recital by pianist Piotr Anderszewski (pictured), at Baltimore's Shriver Hall (December 2, 5:30 pm). The program includes two of Bach's English suites and Robert Schumann's op. 17 fantasy. Tickets: $39.
The other major pianist coming to town this month is the Chinese firecracker Yuja Wang, who will play Chopin's first piano concerto with the National Symphony Orchestra (December 6 to 8). Guest conductor Hans Graf will also lead performances of Lutoslawski's Trauermusik and Tchaikovsky's third symphony ("Polish"), in the Kennedy Center Concert Hall. Tickets: $85 to $10.
German composer Matthias Pintscher comes to Washington this month, to be featured on the Leading European Composer series at the Phillips Collection (December 13, 6:30 pm). He will be joined by members of the International Contemporary Ensemble, performing many of his chamber music works, in a concert cosponsored by the German Embassy. Tickets: $20.