Born in Geneva in 1987, Swiss-Chinese pianist Louis Schwizgebel has been described as an “insightful musician” by the New York Times and “already one of the great masters of the piano” by Res Musica. At the age of seventeen he won the Geneva International Music Competition and, two years later, the Young Concert Artists International Auditions in New York. In 2012 he won second prize at the Leeds International Piano Competition and in 2013 he was invited to become a BBC New Generation Artist.
Schwizgebel has performed with many orchestras across the globe including the London Philharmonic, BBC Symphony, City of Birmingham Symphony, Orchestre National de France, Danish National Symphony Orchestra, Wiener Symphoniker, Orchestre National de Lyon, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Zurich Tonhalle, Nagoya and Shanghai Philharmonic orchestras, Utah Symphony and the Orchestra of St. Luke's (NYC) amongst others. He has worked with conductors such as Gardner, Gražynite-Tyla, Krivine, Collon, Thierry Fischer, Weilerstein, Shani, Ticciati, Slatkin, Langrée, Gaffigan, Rouvali and Gabel amongst others.
Schwizgebel performs regularly in his native Switzerland, both in recital and with the symphony and chamber orchestras; he has played in the major festivals including Progetto Martha Argerich, Menuhin Festival Gstaad and Verbier Festival and in 2016 made his debut at the Lucerne Festival. In 2014 he made his BBC Proms debut with an electrifying televised performance of Prokofiev’s First Concerto and recent recital highlights include performances at London’s Wigmore Hall, Festival de Radio France, Klavierfest Ruhr, Rheingau Festival, Fribourg International Piano Series, Munich’s Herkulesaal and on tour across Hong Kong and China including in Beijing and Shanghai.
Highlights of Schwizgebel’s 18/19 season include debuts with the Philharmonia Orchestra, Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse, Ulster Orchestra and RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra and returns to the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and Musikkollegium Winterthur. Chamber music highlights include his debut at the International Music Festival Koblenz and returns to the Concertgebouw Amsterdam and Wigmore Hall where he appears in three concerts across the season, both in recital and in trio with Benjamin Beilman and Narek Hakhnazaryan.
Schwizgebel records for Aparté and recently released a solo disc of Schubert Sonatas D845 and D958. His recording of Saint-Saens’s Piano Concertos 2 and 5 with the BBC Symphony Orchestra received wide and critical acclaim, with BBC Music Magazine describing his playing as “gorgeously singing and wonderfully delicate”. Of his recording of Beethoven’s First and Second Piano Concertos with the London Philharmonic Orchestra Gramophone magazine described Schwizgebel’s performance as a “beautifully nuanced account” and his solo disc, Poems, featuring works by Ravel, Liszt, Holliger and Schubert was given four stars by Germany’s Fono Forum who hailed Schwizgebel “a genuine virtuoso, a spirited young genius with real depth”.
Schwizgebel studied with Brigitte Meyer in Lausanne and Pascal Devoyon in Berlin, and then later at the Juilliard School with Emanuel Ax and Robert McDonald, and at London’s Royal Academy of Music with Pascal Nemirovski.
Schwizgebel is grateful for the support he has received from the Migros Culture Percentage, Hans Wilsdorf Foundation, Mozart Gesellschaft Dortmund and Animato Foundation.
Piano Concerto No.1 in C Major Op.15
Piano Concerto No.2 in B-flat Major Op.18
Piano Concerto No.4 in G Major Op.58
Piano Concerto No.5 in E-flat Major Op.73
Piano Concerto No.1 in E minor Op.11
Grande Polonaise Brillante in B-flat Major Op.22
Rhapsody in Blue
Piano Concerto in F
Piano Concerto in A minor Op.16
Piano Concerto No.1 in E-flat Major
Piano Concerto No.9 in E-flat Major (“Jeunehomme”) K.271
Piano Concerto No.21 in C Major K.467
Piano Concerto No.23 in A Major K.488
Concerto for Two Pianos in E-flat major K.365
Concerto for Three Pianos in F major, K.242
Concerto for Two Pianos
Piano Concerto in One Movement
Piano Concerto No.1 in D-flat Major Op.10
Piano Concerto No.2 in C minor Op.18
Piano Concerto in G Major
Piano Concerto for the Left Hand
Piano Concerto No.2 in G minor Op.22
Piano Concerto No.5 in F Major Op.103
Piano Concerto in A minor Op.54
Piano Concerto No.2 in F Major Op.102
Piano Concerto No.1 in B-flat minor Op.23
Alondra de la Parra
Sir Mark Elder
Sir John Eliot Gardiner
Roberto González Monjas
Jan van Steen
New York Times
His passagework was lithe and sparkling; his phrasing lucid and shapely. Here was an insightful musician in action who brought out complexities in inner voices and gave an extra nudge to crucial rhythmic accents. He drew out mysterious moments, searching passages and milky textures. And he had a romping good time in the dancing rondo.
Schwizgebel was most impressive: slight of build but astonishingly powerful, he highlighted the dark drama of Ravel’s sonorities, yet it was the expressivity of the slow poetic lines that were most potent
This young artist is a genuine virtuoso, a spirited young genius with real depth… he produces an astonishing range of different colours and tones, showing an unerring instinct for the drama and tension of the cycle’s artificial brilliance and demonic energy… There is only one thing to be said after this hour of inspired music-making: Bravo!