Denis Matsuev


• People’s Artist of Russia (2011)

Denis Matsuev was born in 1975 in Irkutsk. Graduated from the Tchaikovsky Moscow State Conservatory. In 1998 was the winner of the International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow, following which he began to tour actively throughout the world and perform with renowned symphony orchestras.

The pianist’s partners included the New York Philharmonic, the symphony orchestras of Chicago, Philadelphia, Los Angeles and Cincinnati, the Berliner Philharmoniker, the Orchestre de Paris, Leipzig’s Gewandhausorchester, the London Philharmonic Orchestra, the Philharmonia Orchestra (London) and the BBC Symphony Orchestra among numerous other ensembles. Matsuev performed with such conductors as Valery Gergiev, Yuri Temirkanov, Zubin Mehta, Paavo Järvi, Antonio Pappano, Charles Dutoit, Alan Gilbert, Vladimir Fedoseyev, Yuri Bashmet, Mikhail Pletnev and Semyon Bychkov.

Matsuev considers his main priority to be the development of philharmonic music in Russia’s regions – and it is in Russia that he presents a significant proportion of his concert programmes, most frequently premieres. Since 1995 he has been a soloist with the Moscow Philharmonic Society, where since 2004 the pianist has presented his personal subscription Soloist – Denis Matsuev. Appears in a trio with percussionist Alexander Zinger and double bass player Andrei Ivanov.

Director of and inspiration behind several music festivals. Since 2004 the pianist has run the festival Stars on Baikal in Irkutsk, while since 2005 he has been Artistic Director of the Crescendo festival, concerts of which are held in Moscow, St Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, Kaliningrad, Pskov, Tel Aviv, Paris and New York. In 2012 he became Artistic Director of the International Festival of Classical Music and Competition for Young Pianists Astana Piano Passion. The musician is also Artistic Director of the International Competition for Young Pianists Grand Piano Competition (Moscow). Since 2008 Denis Matsuev has been President of the Charitable Foundation New Names.

In 2004 he signed a contract with the company BMG. The pianist’s first project together with the company – the solo album Tribute to Horowitz – received the Record prize in 2005. His discography also includes the disc Unknown Rachmaninoff, recorded on that composer’s piano at the Villa Senar in Lucerne (2007), the albums Denis Matsuev: The Carnegie Hall Concert (Sony, 2008), Matsuev. Liszt (RCA Red Seal, 2011), a recording of works by Shostakovich and Shchedrin (Mariinsky, 2012), Rachmaninoff’s Second Piano Concerto and Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue (2013), Szymanowski’s Third and Fourth symphonies (2013). In 2014 his recording of Tchaikovsky’s First and Second piano concerti was named “Album of the Month” by Gramophone magazine. In 2018 the Mariinsky label released a recording of concerti by Prokofiev and Rachmaninoff, and 2020 saw the release of his disc with works by Shostakovich, Schnittke and Lutosławski on Deutsche Grammophon.

Member of the Council for Culture and Arts of the President of the Russian Federation. Recipient of the Shostakovich Prize (2009), the State Prize of Russia for 2009 and the Russian Federation Government Prize (2017). UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador and recipient of the Order of Honour of the Russian Federation. In 2019 he was awarded the Lev Nikolaev Gold Medal “for a significant contribution to enlightenment and the popularisation of the achievements in science and culture”. In 2021 Denis Matsuev won the International Classical Music Award (ICMA) in the category “Video Performance” (he is the first Russian prize-winner in this category) for a Rachmaninoff programme played with the Orchestre du Festival de Lucerne under the baton of Riccardo Chailly.
Information for December 2023

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