2014 Gilmore Artist
Polish pianist Rafal Blechacz (pronounced Ra-FAW BLEH-hawtch) has been praised as “one of the pianistic giants of our time” (The Sunday Times).
The music of Chopin resonates strongly with Blechacz, and he is recognized for his intelligent and expressive interpretations of the composer’s works, yet his abundant virtuosity and profound musicianship have incited equal acclaim for his performances of works by an increasingly wide range of composers, from Bach and Beethoven to Liszt, Debussy and Szymanowski.
In 2005, Blechacz was named the uncontested winner of the prestigious International Chopin Piano Competition – the first Polish musician to win the competition in 30 years. In addition, he was awarded First Prize as well as all the special prizes of the competition – a feat no other pianist has achieved. He has performed in Europe, Japan and North America to critical acclaim, and he has ensured himself a huge following among piano aficionados.
An exclusive recording artist for Deutsche Grammophon since 2006, Blechacz has recorded five CDs for them.
Born in 1985 in Poland, Blechacz began piano lessons at the age of five. Three years later he enrolled at the Arthur Rubinstein State Music School in Bydgoszcz and went on to study at the city’s Feliks Nowowiejski Academy of Music, where he graduated in 2007.
In addition to his performing career, he is currently pursuing a doctorate in philosophy with emphasis in aesthetics and the philosophy of music at (Nicolaus Copernicus University) in Poland.