• Music
  • Run Ended


Showing on Jan 24-25

Playing at ANNEX

A photo of a man playing the piano. The photo is slightly blurred, the man faces the camera with what appears to be a melancholic expression.

Adam Tendler (USA)

Adam Tendler, one of the most celebrated contemporary pianists in the world, didn’t expect an inheritance from his father. But, when it happened, the gift was as bizarre as it was unexpected: a wad of cash in a manilla envelope, handed over in a parking lot.

His inspiration for how to spend it came in a flash months later: commission a program of new piano works about inheritance itself. Tendler performs each of the 16 pieces received from sound artists and composers at this Canadian premiere. These diverse compositions are bold and tender in turn. Each holds a depth and emotional resonance. These “bereavement gifts” to the artist can be profound, almost sacred, forays into the meaning of legacy in all its forms. 

Woven into one intimate program, the pieces tell a universal story of lineage, loss and place, and become a meditation on confronting our past while moving forward into the future.

David Pay, Artistic Director of PuSh partner Music on Main, spoke with Adam Tendler about Inheritances on the PuSh Play podcast. Listen to the episode here.

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Artist Bio

Adam Tendler (USA)

Adam Tendler is a recipient of the Lincoln Center Award for Emerging Artists and the 2022 Yvar Mikhashoff Prize. He has been called “currently the hottest pianist on the American contemporary classical scene” (Minneapolis Star Tribune), a “remarkable and insightful musician” (LA Times), and a “relentlessly adventurous pianist” (The Washington Post) “joyfully rocking out at his keyboard” (The New York Times).

A pioneer of DIY culture in classical music, at age 23 Tendler performed solo recitals in all fifty states in a grassroots tour that was later the subject of his acclaimed coming-out memoir, 88×50. He has gone on to become one of classical music’s most celebrated artists, commissioning major works from composers as diverse as Christian Wolff and Devonté Hynes, and recently appearing as soloist with the London Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, and as soloist on the main-stages of Carnegie Hall, the Barbican Centre, and BAM. An expert in the music of John Cage, Tendler has worked closely with the John Cage Trust and Cage’s publisher, Edition Peters, and performed the composer’s work internationally. He has also extensively performed the music of Julius Eastman and is featured on Wild Up’s latest album of the composer’s works, If You’re So Smart, Why Aren’t You Rich. Other recent releases include Liszt’s Harmonies Poétiques et Religieuses on the Steinway Label, Robert Palmer: Piano Music on New World Records, as well as his second book, tidepools.

For his Inheritances project, premiered in 2022, Tendler commissioned 16 new piano works using the entire inheritance left to him by his father from composers including Laurie Anderson, Nico Muhly and Missy Mazzoli. A New York Times Critic Pick, the program was described as “not only a display of contemporary compositional force, but also a true show…with a sense of true dramatic stakes.” Adam Tendler is a Yamaha Artist and serves on the piano faculty of NYU. He is currently Artist-in-Residence at Green-Wood Cemetery.



823 Seymour St, Vancouver, BC


  • January 24: 7:30
  • January 25: 7:30

Runtime: 80 min, no intermission


Single Tickets: $42, Arts Workers/Students $19
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Composers Devonté Hynes, Nico Muhly, Laurie Anderson, inti figgis-vizueta, Pamela Z, Ted Hearne, Angélica Negrón, Christopher Cerrone, Marcos Balter, Missy Mazzoli, Darian Donovan Thomas, Sarah Kirkland Snider, Scott Wollschleger, Mary Prescott, Timo Andres and John Glover