Stephanie McCallum (born Sydney, Australia, 3 March 1956) is a classical pianist. She has recorded works of Erik Satie, Ludwig van Beethoven, Charles-Valentin Alkan, Franz Liszt, Robert Schumann, Carl Maria von Weber, Albéric Magnard, Pierre Boulez, and Iannis Xenakis among others.
Stephanie McCallum was born in Sydney in 1956. She studied with Alexander Sverjensky and Gordon Watson at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. After further study with Ronald Smith in the UK, she gave a debut concert at the Wigmore Hall in 1982. Returning to Australia in 1985, she became a founding member of contemporary ensembles austraLYSIS and the Sydney Alpha Ensemble. She has performed as soloist with most of the major Australian symphony orchestras and in ensembles with the Australian Chamber Orchestra, ELISION Ensemble and The Australia Ensemble. In a 1985 Wigmore Hall recital, she gave what is believed to be the first complete public performance of Alkan's Three Studies, Opus 76 (for the Left Hand, for the Right Hand, and for the Hands Reunited). In 2000, she gave the world premiere of Elena Kats-Chernin's Displaced Dances for Piano and Orchestra (which was written for her) with the Queensland Symphony Orchestra and has subsequently performed this work with the Adelaide and Sydney Symphony orchestras. As well as performing and recording, she continues teaching at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music as Associate Professor in piano.
Repertoire and recordings
Stephanie McCallum has released 18 solo CDs, and her recordings of the music of Liszt and her popular CDs of French piano music have recently been re-released as boxed sets. Her recording of all of Beethoven's Bagatelles for piano, contains the published sets of Bagatelles, Opus 33, 119 and 126, individual pieces such as the popular Für Elise, and also the first recording of what is believed to be the last piano piece that Beethoven wrote, never before published or even catalogued (the piece was edited by Stephanie's husband, the musicologist Peter McCallum). She has made a particular specialty of virtuosic nineteenth century music, making a specialty of Alkan, and of contemporary solo and ensemble music. She made the first recording of Alkan's Studies in all the Major Keys, Opus 35, and subsequently recorded Alkan's Studies in all the Minor Keys, Opus 39, being the first pianist to record both sets. In 2013, during the centenary of Alkan's birth, she released recordings of all five Books of Alkan's Chants, along with other previously unrecorded music by this composer. Her performances of Xenakis's Herma, and Brian Ferneyhough's Lemma Icon Epigram have received critical acclaim. She has released CDs of the music of Liszt, Weber, Alkan, Schumann, Magnard, Pierre Boulez, Xenakis and of contemporary Australian composers. Stephanie McCallum is the only pianist to have recorded both the major and the minor key studies (Opus 35 and 39) of Alkan. In addition to Alkan and Pierre Boulez, she has recorded much other music by French composers: Erik Satie, Albéric Magnard, Vincent d'Indy, Maurice Ravel and Guy Ropartz.
Her solo CDs include
- Alkan, Complete Recueils de Chants Volume One, Toccata Classics (2013)
- Alkan, Complete Recueils de Chants Volume Two, including Deux Nocturnes, Opus 57, Deux Petites Pièces, Opus 60: Ma Chère liberte, Ma chère servitude, Désir. Fantaisie, Chapeau bas! Seconda fantasticheria, Toccata Classics (2013)
- Scenes from Childhood. Piano music of Robert Schumann, ABC Classics (2010)
- Für Elise. Bagatelles for piano by Ludwig van Beethoven, ABC Classics (2008)
- Gymnopédies: the Exquisite Piano Music of Erik Satie, ABC Classics (2007)
- Alkan: Douze Etudes dans les tons mineurs [Twelve Studies in the Minor Keys], opus 39 (including Symphonie, Concerto and Overture for solo piano, and Le Festin d'Esope), [2 CDs] ABC Classics (2006)
- Liszt: from the Years of Pilgrimage, ABC Classics (2003)
- The Liszt Album, ABC Classics (2003) (including the B minor Sonata)
- Perfume: the exquisite piano music of France, ABC Classics (2001)
- Carl Maria von Weber: the Complete Piano Sonatas and other works, [2 CDs] ABC Classics (1998)
- Illegal Harmonies: the Twentieth Century Piano, ABC Classics (1997)
- Alkan & Magnard, Tall Poppies (1996)
- Notations, Tall Poppies (1994)
- Alkan, Twelve Studies in the Major Keys, opus 35, Tall Poppies (1994)
- Alkan, Concerto for solo piano (from op. 39), Chants opus 70 [first recording] (1990).
Stephanie McCallum is an Associate Professor in piano at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music.
- "Ludwig Van Beethoven's 'last piano work' found in Berlin Library". Telegraph. 9 September 2008. www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/germany/2711133/Ludwig-Van-Beethovens-last-piano-work-found-in-Berlin-library.html
- "Scholar finds 'Beethoven's last piano work' in library". The Independent. 9 September 2008. http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/music/news/scholar-finds-beethovens-last-piano-work-in-library-923491.html