A “wanderer between worlds” (Lucerne Festival), “immensely talented” and “quietly powerful pianist” (New York Times), Swiss-born American Gilles Vonsattel is an artist of extraordinary versatility and originality. Comfortable with and seeking out an enormous range of repertoire, Vonsattel displays a musical curiosity and sense of adventure that has gained him many admirers. Recipient of an Avery Fisher Career Grant and winner of the Naumburg and Geneva competitions as well as the 2016 Andrew Wolf Chamber Music Award, he has in recent years appeared with the Boston Symphony, Tanglewood, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Munich Philharmonic, Gothenburg Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, and Detroit Symphony Orchestra, while performing recitals and chamber music at the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Ravinia, Tokyo’s Musashino Hall, Wigmore Hall, Bravo! Vail, Music@Menlo, the Gilmore festival, the Lucerne festival, and the Munich Gasteig. His 2014 New York solo recital was hailed as “tightly conceived and passionately performed…a study in intensity” by The New York Times.
As a soloist he has also appeared with the Warsaw Philharmonic, Calgary Philharmonic, Edmonton Symphony, l’Orchestre Symphonique du Québec, Boston Pops, Nashville Symphony, Musikkollegium Winterthur, Staatskapelle Halle, and L’orchestre de chambre de Genève. Chamber partners include musicians such as James Ehnes, Frank Huang, Ilya Gringolts, Nicolas Altstaedt, David Shifrin, David Finckel, Stefan Jackiw, Jörg Widmann, Gary Hoffman, Carter Brey, David Requiro, Paul Huang, Anthony Marwood, Paul Neubauer, Paul Watkins, Philip Setzer, Emmanuel Pahud, Karen Gomyo, David Jolley, and Ida Kavafian. He has appeared in concert with the Emerson, Pacifica, Orion, St. Lawrence, Ebène, Danish, Miró, Daedalus, Escher, and Borromeo Quartets. Mr. Vonsattel is Principal Pianist of Camerata Pacifica, a member of the Swiss Chamber Soloists, and plays alongside Ida Kavafian and David Jolley in Trio Valtorna. Deeply committed to the performance of contemporary works, he has premiered numerous works both in the United States and Europe and worked closely with notable composers such as Jörg Widmann, Heinz Holliger, and George Benjamin. His recording for the Honens/Naxos label of music by Debussy, Honegger, Holliger, and Ravel was named one of Time Out New York’s 2011 classical albums of the year, while a 2014 release on GENUIN/Artist Consort received a 5/5 from FonoForum and international critical praise. His latest solo release (2015) for Honens of Scarlatti, Webern, Messiaen, Debussy, and George Benjamin’s Shadowlines received rave reviews in Gramophone, The New York Times, and the American Record Guide. Upcoming recordings include Richard Strauss’ Panathenäenzug and Kurt Leimer’s Concerto for Left Hand with the Bern Symphony Orchestra and Mario Venzago, for the Schweizer Fonogramm label.
Recent projects include Berg’s Kammerkonzert with the Orchestra della Svizzera Italiana, a tour with Jörg Widmann and the Irish Chamber Orchestra, Mozart concerti with the Vancouver Symphony and Florida Orchestra, performances at Seoul’s LG Arts Centre and at the Beijing Modern Music Festival, collaborations with Kent Nagano with L’Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal and the Munich Philharmonic (Bernstein’s Symphony No. 2, The Age of Anxiety) as well as numerous appearances internationally and throughout the United States with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. Mr. Vonsattel received his bachelor’s degree in political science and economics from Columbia University and his master’s degree from The Juilliard School, where he studied with Jerome Lowenthal. He is Associate Professor of Piano at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and on the faculty of Bard Conservatory. Gilles Vonsattel is a Steinway Artist.