Phillips Music

A Phillips Tradition Since 1941

2019/20 concert season

We are excited to announce the Phillips Music 2019/20 Season. Throughout this season, we present special concerts that explore the rich connections between music and the visual arts, with several performances aligned with our special exhibitions, including a Leading International Composers concert featuring the music of George Lewis (March 1). Exciting debut performances include German musicians Christian Tetzlaff, violin, and Lars Vogt, piano (October 20), Russian-American pianist Kirill Gerstein (April 5), and American countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo (March 29). In more Phillips Music firsts, we fuse dance by the New Chamber Ballet with music by Ursula Mamlok (February 16). Acclaimed American pianist Jonathan Biss performs a mini-cycle of the Piano Sonatas of Ludwig van Beethoven (November 3, December 1, March 22). We also salute the great string quartet repertoire with performances by the Vision Quartet (November 17), St. Lawrence Quartet (January 16), Harlem Quartet (October 13), and Attacca Quartet (May 3).

We look forward to sharing in so much varied and exciting music with you this season.


October Concerts On sale August 1 at 10 am
November Concerts On sale September 1 at 10 am
December Concerts On sale October 1 at 10 am
January Concerts On sale November 1 at 10 am
February Concerts On sale December 1 at 10 am
March Concerts On sale January 2 at 10 am
April Concerts On sale February 1 at 10 am
May Concerts On sale March 1 at 12 pm


The Phillips Collection continues to vigilantly monitor the news and information about COVID-19. As a precautionary measure and in adherence with recommendations by the District of Columbia Health Advisory, we will postpone all museum-sponsored public events through Friday, April 3, including concerts on March 15, March 22, March 26, and March 29. The Phillips special exhibits and permanent collection remain open as usual during regular hours.

If a ticket purchaser would like a refund, or in the event of a program cancellation, ticket purchases will be refunded. Please contact for any additional questions. 

Concert sold out? Standby tickets may become available (credit card only) near the House entrance to the Music Room starting at 3:30 pm for Sunday Concerts and 6 pm for Thursday Concerts.

Apr 5, 2020, 4 PM


Kirill Gerstein solo piano

Replacing pianist Nelson Freire, who cancelled his scheduled performance due to injury, Russian-American pianist Kirill Gerstein presents a skillfully crafted program with every shade of pianistic color on display. Featuring works by Haydn, Brahms, Schubert, Kurtág, Adès, and concluding with Liszt’s poetic and deeply spiritual Sonata in B Minor. 

Apr 19, 2020, 4 PM


Riffs and Relations: Castle of our Skins led by Ashleigh Gordon, Artistic Director and viola | Exhibition Concert

Castles of our Skins present “In Black & White,” a program that responds to the exhibition Riffs and Relations: African American Artists and the European Modernist Tradition. Tracing a parallel musical line of enquiry into the exchange of visual aesthetics between 20th- and 21st-century African American artists and European modernists.

Apr 26, 2020, 4 PM


Miriam Fried & Musicians from Ravinia Steans Music Institute violin and ensemble

Violinist Miriam Fried and Musicians from Ravinia’s Steans Music Institute make their debut at the Phillips.

May 3, 2020, 4 PM


Gabriel Kahane, Caroline Shaw & Attacca Quartet voice, piano, and string quartet

Two dynamic composer-performers known for their hybrid musical styles, Gabriel Kahane and Caroline Shaw join the brilliant Attacca Quartet for a special collaboration.

May 10, 2020, 4 PM


Imogen Cooper solo piano

Pianist Imogen Cooper makes her debut at the Phillips with a program of works by Beethoven, Schubert, Haydn, and Schoenberg.

May 17, 2020, 4 PM


Maki Namekawa solo piano 

In a special performance marking the end of the 2019/20 season of Phillips Music, we welcome back pianist Maki Namekawa for the DC premiere of Philip Glass’s First Piano Sonata, composed for the pianist in 2019.

Jun 11, 2020, 6:30 PM


Vocal Colors: Wolf Trap Opera voice and piano

Wolf Trap Opera singers explore musical links to The Phillip Collection’s extraordinary permanent collection.

Tickets not yet available

Jul 9, 2020, 6:30 PM


Vocal Colors: Wolf Trap Opera voice and piano

Singers from Wolf Trap Opera respond to works in the exhibition In and Out of the Garden: Pierre Bonnard and Jennifer Bartlett (on view June 27–September 20, 2020).

Tickets not yet available


quartet for the end of time

Watch Quartet for the End of Time

A music documentary about Olivier Messiaen’s transcendent masterpiece, that he composed in a World War II prison camp, and debuted there on January 15, 1941. This film was completed on the 75th Anniversary of that historic premiere, and features “The President’s Own” United States Marine Band Ensemble performing in rehearsal and at The Phillips Collection. Created by H. Paul Moon.

The art of piano restoration

Watch Sitka: A Piano Documentary

Some of the world's leading pianists have played The Phillips Collection's Steinway Concert D 542016, but they started hearing something wrong with it: the soundboard. This half-hour documentary—named for the spruce wood that replaced the soundboard—tells the story of tearing the piano apart and bringing it back to life. Along the way, we learn how a piano works and witness the consummate art of restoration by PianoCraft. Rising international star Olivier Cavé puts it to the test in this cinematic music documentary by filmmaker H. Paul Moon.