Portuguese born piano virtuoso Maria João Pires was one of the winners of the prestigious Gramophone Classical Music Awards 2015, in the category of concerto, with her interpretation of Beethoven Piano Concerto Nos 3 & 4 with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Daniel Harding conductor.
Established in 1977, the Gramophone awards are considered the ‘Oscars’ of classical music performers worldwide. This year’s Gramophone Awards ceremony will take place at St John’s, Smith Square, London, September 17.
In July 2014, in celebration of her 70th birthday, Deutsche Gramophone has released the “Complete DG Solo Recordings” featuring over twenty recording hours of compositions by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Frédéric Chopin, Ludwig van Beethoven, Franz Schubert, Johannes Brahms, Robert Schumann and Johann Sebastian Bach. Since 1989, Pires had recorded exclusively for Deutsche Gramophone.
One of the most acclaimed interpreters of Mozart and Schubert, in 2014, Maria João Pires was nominated for the 56th Grammy Awards in the “Best Classical Instrumental Solo” category, for her interpretation of Schubert: Piano Sonatas D. 845 & D. 960. This was the second time Pires was a nominee for a Grammy. She was first nominated in 2009.
Her recording of Mozart’s complete sonatas received the 1990 Grand Prix du Disque. She has also received awards such as the Beethoven Prize (1970), the Pessoa Prize (1989), the Music Prize of UNESCO (2002) or the International Prize Don Juan de Borbón (2006).
Pires has interpreted works by Bach, Beethoven, Schumann, Schubert, Mozart, Brahms, Chopin and many other classical and romantic composers, performing with major orchestras such as the Berlin Philharmoniker, the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, the London Philharmonic, the Orchestre de Paris, and the Wiener Philharmoniker.
In recent years she has been heard at all the major international festivals including the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival, the Schubertiade, Tanglewood, Ravinia, Montpellier, Lucerne, Edinburgh and BBC Proms.
In 2006, after taking time off to concentrate on a variety of educational projects in Portugal, Pires renounced her Portuguese citizenship and moved to Brazil, embattled and embittered for the lack of support for her Portugal based Belgais Center, a music project for children.
Born in Lisbon, Maria João Pires gave her first recital at the age of five and made her first public performance at the age of seven with Mozart’s Piano Concertos. At the age of nine she received Portugal’s highest award for young musicians. She gained international fame in 1970, after winning the Beethoven Bicentennial Competition in Brussels.
Review: Classical Music Awards 2015 Gramophone
Gramophone Classical Music Awards 2015 – Full list of winners in 12 categories
Related on the Web
- Maria João Pires: the panic, the miracle – The Telegraph