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Artur Pizarro (Piano)

Born: 1968 - Lisbon, Portugal

The Portuguese pianist, Artur Pizarro, first played the piano on Portuguese television at the age of 4 having been introduced to the instrument by his maternal grandmother, pianist Berta da Nóbrega, and her piano-duo partner Campos Coelho who was a student of José Vianna da Motta, Ricardo Viñes and Isidor Philipp. From 1974 to 1990 Artur Pizarro studied with Sequeira Costa who had also been a student of José Vianna da Motta, Mark Hamburg, Edwin Fischer, Marguerite Long and Jacques Février. This distinguished lineage immersed Artur in the tradition of the Golden Age of pianism and gave him a broad education in both the German and French piano schools and repertoire. After initial studies in Lisbon, he moved to Lawrence, Kansas in the USA and continued working with Sequeira Costa who is Professor of Piano at the University of Kansas. Artur began performing publicly again at the age of 13 with a recital debut at the São Luíz Theatre in Lisbon and gave his concerto debut with the Gulbenkian Orchestra later in the same year. While still under the tutelage of Costa, Artur Pizarro won first prizes in the 1987 Vianna da Motta Competition, the 1988 Greater Palm Beach Symphony Competition and the 1990 Harverys Leeds International Pianoforte Competition, which saw the beginning of an international concert career.

Renowned for his lyrical poeticism and outstanding virtuosity, Artur Pizarro performs internationally with the world's leading orchestras and conductors including Charles Dutoit, Sir Simon Rattle, Jean Fournier, Philippe Entremont, Pascal Tortelier, Sir Andrew Davis, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Yuri Termikanov, Vladimir Fedoseev, Franz Welser-Most and Sir Charles Mackerras.

Artur Pizarro regularly appears as a recitalist and chamber musician. As a recitalist Artur has performed at many of the world's most prestigious venues and festivals including Washington's Kennedy Centre, The Wigmore Hall, the Aldeburgh Festival, Neues Gewandhaus, Frankfurt Alte Oper, Theatre du Chatelet, Musee D'Orsay, Zurich Tonhalle, the BBC Proms, and the NHK and Orchard Halls in Japan. Throughout 2003-2004 season Artur Pizarro performed the complete cycle of L.v. Beethoven Piano Sonatas at St John's Smith Square in London. All 8 concerts were broadcast on BBC Radio 3's 'PERFORMANCE ON 3'. In February 2004 Artur Pizarro was nominated for a Royal Philharmonic Society Award for his complete L.v. Beethoven piano sonata cycle. In 2005 he formed the 'Artur Pizarro Piano Trio' with violinist Raphael Oleg and cellist Josephine Knight. Artur also is part of a piano duo with Vita Panomariovaite. His chamber music appearances have partnered him also with Christian Altenburger, Truls Mørk, Toby Hoffmann, the St Lawrence and the Muir Quartets and the international opera star Maria Ewing.

Artur Pizarro has recorded extensively for Collins Classics to great critical acclaim. Artur has also released a disc of two piano works by Milhaud with Stephen Coombs for Hyperion. With Joan Enric Lluna Artur has released a CD for Harmonia Mundi of Spanish music for clarinet and piano. Artur's recording of Sergei Rachmaninov's third piano concerto with Martyn Brabbins and the NDR Orchestra has been particularly well received. Also with Martyn Brabbins, Artur recently recorded the premiere CD of the Dramatic Fantasy and Concerto for Piano & Orchestra by José Vianna da Motta with the Gulbenkian Orchestra available on Hyperion Records. In February 2003 Artur Pizarro released a CD of L.v. Beethovens Piano Sonatas for Linn records to outstanding critical acclaim. 2006 Artur and Vita Panomariovaite recorded works for piano duet of Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov for Linn Records.

'Pizarro is an aristocrat, producing flowing lines in a style almost unfamiliar these days. He must be one of the best pianists of the younger generation (and arguably, of any other generation)' (Michael Tumelty, The Herald)

Source: Linn Records Website; Hyperion Records Website
Contributed by
Teddy Kaufman (April 2007)

Artur Pizarro: Short Biography | Recordings of Instrumental Works

Links to other Sites

Artur Pizarro (Hyperion)

Artur Pizarro (Linn Records)

Biographies of Performers: Main Page | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z
Explanation | Acronyms | Missing Biographies | The Sad Corner


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