At 22 years old, Alexandre Kantorow is the first French pianist to win the gold medal at the Tchaikovsky Competition as well as the Grand Prix, awarded only three times before in the competition's history. Already hailed by critics as the "young tsar of the piano" (Classica) and "Liszt reincarnate" (Fanfare), he has received numerous other awards and is already being invited at the highest level worldwide.
Even before the competition, Kantorow had already been attracting attention. He began his career at an early stage and at 16 made his debut at La Folle Journée festival in Nantes. Since then he has played with many of the world's major orchestras, including regularly the Mariinsky Orchestra with Valery Gergiev, and highlights in this and future seasons include the Orchestre de Paris, Staatskapelle Berlin, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Philharmonia, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic and tours with the Orchestre National de Toulouse, Budapest Festival Orchestra and the Munich Philharmonic.
In recital he appears at major concert halls such as the Concertgebouw Amsterdam in their Master Pianists series, Konzerthaus Berlin, Philharmonie de Paris, BOZAR in Brussels, Stockholm Konserthus and at the most prestigious festivals including La Roque d’Anthéron, Piano aux Jacobins, Verbier Festival and Klavierfest Ruhr. In March 2020 Kantorow was invited to step in for Murray Perahia with a recital at Carnegie Hall (Stern Auditorium).
Kantorow records exclusively with BIS, to great critical acclaim. His two most recent recordings (Saint-Saëns concerti 3-5 and solo works by Brahms, Bartók and Liszt) both received the Diapason d’Or and Choc Classica of the year in 2019 and 2020 respectively, with Gramophone magazine choosing the solo disc as Editor’s Choice and describing his performance as “a further remarkable example of his virtuosity and artistry, showing both skill and sensitivity throughout”. His à la Russe recital recording also won numerous awards and distinctions in 2017, including Choc de l’Année (Classica), Diapason découverte (Diapason), Supersonic (Pizzicato) and CD des Doppelmonats (PianoNews).
Alexandre Kantorow is a laureate of the Safran Foundation and Banque Populaire, and in 2019 was named ‘Musical Revelation of the Year’ by the Professional Critics Association. In 2020 he won the Victoires de la Musique Classique in two categories: Recording of the Year and Instrumental Soloist of the Year.
Born in France and of French-British heritage, he has studied with Pierre-Alain Volondat, Igor Lazko, Franck Braley and Rena Shereshevskaya.
Piano Concerto No.4 in G major, Op.58
Piano Concerto No.2 in B-flat major, Op.83
Piano Concerto No.2 in F minor, Op.21
Concerto pour piano (World premiere in Summer 2021)
Piano Concerto No.1 in E-flat major, S.124
Piano Concerto No.2 in A major, S.125
Malédiction, S. 121
Piano Concerto No.2 in G minor, Op.16
Piano Concerto No.1 in D major, Op.17
Piano Concerto No.2 in G minor, Op.22 (from Summer 2021)
Piano Concerto No.3 in E-flat major, Op. 29
Piano Concerto No. 4 in C minor, Op.44
Piano Concerto No.5 in F major, Op.103 'Egyptian'
Piano Concerto No.2 in G major, Op.44
"Pianist Alexandre Kantorow continues his extraordinary progress with a further remarkable example of his virtuosity and artistry, showing both skill and sensitivity throughout this captivating programme. (Bartók, Brahms, Liszt)"
"Rarely does a new release convince you that the next great pianist has appeared, but it happened here … total admiration and delight."
"He is the real deal, a fire-breathing virtuoso with a poetic charm and innate stylistic mastery."