Alessio Bax, piano
Pianist Alessio Bax is praised for creating “a ravishing listening experience” with his lyrical playing, insightful interpretations, and dazzling facility. “His playing quivers with an almost hypnotic intensity,” says Gramophone magazine, leading to “an out-of-body experience” (Dallas Morning News). First Prize winner at the Leeds and Hamamatsu international piano competitions – and a 2009 Avery Fisher Career Grant recipient – he has appeared as soloist with over 100 orchestras, including the London and Royal Philharmonic orchestras, the Dallas and Houston symphonies, the NHK Symphony in Japan, the St. Petersburg Philharmonic with Yuri Temirkanov, and the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra with Sir Simon Rattle.
During the 2013-14 season, Bax returns to the Dallas Symphony under Jaap van Zweden at Bravo! Vail and in Dallas, and to the UK’s Southbank Sinfonia, with whom he recorded a pair of Mozart piano concertos. He also appears with conductor Hannu Lintu in Finland, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra under Hans Graf, the Berkeley Symphony, the Santa Barbara Chamber Orchestra, and as concerto soloist at the Grant Park Music Festival in Chicago. He tours South America with violinist Joshua Bell, and returns to Lincoln Center for Chamber Music Society concerts, a Great Performers duo recital with pianist Lucille Chung, and a solo recital in a new Chamber Music Society series – in addition to solo recitals in Dallas and Tokyo. Bax and Chung also perform together in Washington, DC and in Hong Kong, Toronto, and on tour in Canada.
Among the highlights of Bax’s recent seasons were appearances with the St. Petersburg Philharmonic under Temirkanov, the Dallas Symphony under van Zweden, and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in the UK; there were debuts at Washington’s Kennedy Center, New York’s Carnegie Hall, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the 92nd Street Y, plus performances with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. During the summer of 2013, Bax participated in nine different festivals, with return appearances in the Bravo! Vail, Bridgehampton, Lexington, and Bard music festivals, and his first residency with Bay Chamber Concerts in Maine as recipient of the 2013 Andrew Wolf Chamber Music Award. In 2013 Bax also received Lincoln Center’s Martin E. Segal Award, which recognizes young artists of exceptional accomplishment.
Fall marks the release of a duo disc with Lucille Chung, presenting Stravinsky’s original four-hand version of the ballet Petrouchka as well as music by Brahms and Piazzolla. His celebrated discography for Signum Classics includes Alessio Bax plays Mozart(Piano Concertos K. 491 and K. 595), Alessio Bax plays Brahms (Gramophone “Critic’s Choice”), Rachmaninov: Preludes and Melodies (American Record Guide “Critics’ Choice 2011”), and Bach Transcribed; and for Warner Classics, Baroque Reflections(Gramophone “Editor’s Choice”). He performed Beethoven’s “Hammerklavier” Sonata for maestro Daniel Barenboim in the PBS-TV documentary Barenboim on Beethoven: Masterclass, available as a DVD box set on the EMI label. His performances have been broadcast live on the BBC (UK); CBC (Canada); RAI (Italy); RTVE (Spain); NHK (Japan); WDR, NDR, and Bayerischer Rundfunk (Germany); American Public Media’s “Performance Today”; WQXR (New York); WGBH (Boston); WETA (Washington, DC); and Sirius-XM satellite radio, among many others.
Hailed by International Piano as “a pianist of refreshing depth,” Bax’s extensiveconcerto repertoire has led to performances with such esteemed conductors as Marin Alsop, Sergiu Commisiona, Vernon Handley, Pietari Inkinen, Jonathan Nott, Vasily Petrenko, Sir Simon Rattle, Yuri Temirkanov, and Jaap van Zweden. His international festival appearances include London’s International Piano Series (Queen Elizabeth Hall); the Verbier Festival in Switzerland; England’s Aldeburgh and Bath festivals; and the Ruhr Klavier-Festival, Beethovenfest Bonn, and Schloss Elmau in Germany. He has also appeared multiple times at such U.S. festivals as Bravo! Vail, Bard Music Festival, and Music@Menlo, and has given recitals in major music halls around the world, including Rome, Milan, Madrid, Mexico City, Paris, London, Tel Aviv, Tokyo, Seoul, Hong Kong, New York, and Washington, DC. An active chamber musician, Bax has collaborated with Emanuel Ax, Joshua Bell, Sol Gabetta, Steven Isserlis, and Jörg Widmann, among others.
Alessio Bax graduated with top honors at the record age of 14 from the conservatory of his hometown in Bari, Italy, where he studied with Angela Montemurro. He studied in France with François-Joël Thiollier and attended the Chigiana Academy in Siena under Joaquín Achúcarro. In 1994 he moved to Dallas to continue his studies with Achúcarro at SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts, and he is now on the teaching faculty there. He and his wife, pianist Lucille Chung, reside in New York City. Alessio Bax is a Steinway artist.