The French-born pianist, François-Joël Thiollier, Franco-American by birth, has assimilated the best of several cultures: He played his first concert at the age of 5 in New York. As a child, he studied in France with Robert Casadesus and distinguished teachers of the Paris Conservatoire. Subsequently, he studied with Sascha Gorodnitzki at the Juilliard School of Music in New York, where he obtained both Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees at the record ages of 18 and 19; with top honors and awards in all subjects, both academic and musical. He went on to win eight «Grands Prix» in international piano competitions, notably the 6th prize at the Tchaikovsky International Competition in Moscow in 1966.and the 6th prize at Queen Elizabeth International Music Competition in Brussels in 1968.
François-Joël Thiollier is one of today’s most complete pianists and musicians. His enormous repertoire (80 concerti), his exceptional musical culture and his extraordinary pianistic command are the key to his international success, winning the highest critical acclaim. He now concertizes in over 40 countries with the leading orchestras such as the Moscow Philharmonic and Leningrad Philharmonic Orchestra, Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam, Residentie Orkest Den Haag, Orchestre de Paris, Orchestre National de France, Orchestre Philharmonique, Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI, Berliner Symphoniker, etc. in famous concert halls, among which the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées and Salle Pleyel in Paris, the Teatro Real and the New Auditorium in Madrid, the Victoria Hall in Geneva, the Accademia Santa Cecilia in Rome, the Milan Teatro alla Scala, the Brussels Palais des Beaux-Arts, the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, the Berlin Philharmonie and Konzerthaus, the Sydney Opera House Concert Hall. Guest of the Berlin Philharmonie, his interpretation of the Ferruccio Busoni Concerto was hailed by the BerlinerMorgenpost: « Thiollier, a pianist absolutely beyond compare, stunned and fascinated his audience with his incredible technique, polished elegance, impeccable sensitivity of sonorities and last but not least, consummate unstinting musicianship.
After recording 36 LP’s, including Scriabin, Franz Liszt, Mozart, L.v. Beethoven, Johannes Brahms etc., François-Joël Thiollier has now registered over 30 CD’s, among which Sergei Rachmaninov complete Piano Works and Concerto No. 2; Franz Liszt (3 CD’s); de Falla Nights in the Gardens of Spain; D’Indy Symphony on a French Mountain Air; César Franck’s Symphonic Variations and Les Djinns; Debussy Complete Piano Works (Etudes hailed by a Choc de la Musique); Viennese Waltzes (another Choc de la Musique); Gershwin Complete Piano Works; L.v. Beethoven very rare and early works; Gouvy Complete Works for Piano and Violin; d’Ollone Fantasy for Piano and Orchestra. His recordings for Naxos include the award-winning complete piano music of Debussy, the complete piano music of Ravel, and works by Manuel de Falla, d’Indy and César Franck, in addition to other award-winning releases for a number of other labels. His DVD’s include Mozart’s Chamber Concertos, K 413, K 414 and K 449 and the complete piano music of Gershwin for Multigram and Venice Channel. Released in June 2010 (UK only): Chill With Collection (Naxos, 10-CD box set); in June 2010 (internationally): Meditation (Naxos 8-CD box set).
François-Joël Thiollier was named Officier des Arts et Lettres by the French Ministry of Culture and Communication in 2003.