The living legendary pianist Joaquín Achúcarro has lately been honoured by having a planet named after him in recognition of his long and influential career.

On the 24th September in 1960, C.J. van Houten, Ingrid van Houten-Groeneveld and Tom Gehrels discovered planet 2113 P-L. In November 2012, the International Astronomical Union (IAU) decided to name this planet 2113 P-L after the Spanish pianist Joaquín Achúcarro.

The asteroid will henceforth be known to mankind as ‘(22191)Achucarro’. Joaquín Achúcarro is a distinguished concert pianist, admired teacher and mentor, with a performance career spanning over 50 years in 60 countries. Eminent composer and conductor Zubin Mehta acclaimed Achúcarro’s music by stating that he had only heard this sound from Arthur Rubinstein.

22191Achúcarro is a main-belt asteroid, discovered on photographic plates taken for the Palomar, California survey. It is a rocky object. approximately 5Km in size, which orbits the sun every 4.34 years at a distance between 363 and 432 million Km, between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. It is not visible to the naked eye. Astronomy enthusiasts can further search up-to-date ephemerides, which are position coordinates on the sky, from the IAU Minor Planet Centre.

Joaquín Achúcarro’s work has lately been included in a list of the 100 most beautiful piano recordings of all time. This list has been compiled by critics of Diapason in its latest issue. He has been listed along other legendary performers like Serkin, Horowitz, Rachmaninov, Pollini, Argerich and Gilels, among others.

Joaquín Achúcarro will be performing at the Three Palaces Festival on the 3rd November at the Archeology Museum, Valletta.

Tickets are €10, and can be purchased from the Manoel Theatre website.