The German pianist, Hannes Sonntag, was born into the atmosphere of an artist's parents' house. At 14 he made his debut with W.A. Mozart's Piano Concerto in C major KV 467 After piano studies in Münster, Essen, Frankfurt and Detmold, he studied as a scholarship holder with Stefan Askenase in Bonn. This great pianist, directed his successor in the tradition embodied in his Frédéric Chopin playing. Over more than a decade he remained Hannes Sonntag’s mentor and friend. Of major importance to Sonntag was also a personal encounter with Arthur Rubinstein in Amsterdam.
Since then, Hannes Sonntag has given concerts in Germany and a number of European countries. For the Westdeutschen Rundfunk Köln, he played a piano sonatas by W.A. Mozart and L.v. Beethoven. With opening of the Soviet Union he has come to Russia on a regular basis since 1990. He has given master-classes for Russian piano students and has worked with the Russian radio and television including a F. Chopin-recordings portrait. Here he performed the premiere of For Eloise, a work of the renowned American composer Jack Fortner.
From 1995 to 2005, Hannes Sonntag was devoted as the pianist of the violin-piano ensemble "Duo Esterhazy", especially in chamber music. The label Audite released CD by the duo, which received enthusiastic responses from the international press: the world's authoritative journal The Strad (London, October 2003) awarded the album with the prestigious Strad selection star, the TV channel Arte chose it as the CD of the Week (Paris, August 2003), and Die Zeit included it in their CD year's best selection (Hamburg, December 2003).
Recently, Hannes Sonntag is dedicated again to the works of F. Chopin, W.A. Mozart and J.S. Bach. His new J.S. Bach CD was released in 2009.