Biography: Zsolt Bognár

Praised by the German press for his sold-out 2012 Berlin debut at the Young Euro Classic Festival at the Konzerthaus in Gendarmenmarkt that was “intellectually shaped, powerful, and of crystalline precision”, Zsolt Bognár’s performances in America, Europe, and Asia have been praised as “overwhelmingly visceral…a phenomenal sound world realized through maximum palette.” With recent debut performances in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Munich, Brussels, Vienna, and in Tokyo’s Suntory Hall, Mr. Bognár released a much-lauded first CD album of works of Schubert and Liszt in 2013, recorded in Berlin with the legendary producer Philipp Nedel; the recordings were proclaimed for benchmark status in several international publications. Recipient of the 2007 Arthur Loesser Prize and having studied with Sergei Babayan for over ten years, Mr. Bognár is frequently invited to perform chamber music with members of The Cleveland Orchestra in live NPR broadcasts. Winner of several international piano competitions in America and in Europe, he is the host of a film show “Living the Classical Life” with musicians and industry personalities from around the world, presented by Elyria Pictures in New York with directors Peter Hobbs and Elizabeth Foley. His musical collaborations and diverse projects were the recipient of an International Festival Society Grant in 2013 to spend a week with Martha Argerich, and have included international speaking engagements, publications including in International Piano Magazine and in Norman Lebrecht’s “Slipped Disc” for artsJournal UK, and residencies in performance series and universities in the United States. He has performed together with several rising stars including cellist Joshua Roman, conductor Case Scaglione, and violinist Jessica Hung; his new music projects have included several world premiere performances with noted young composers Dan Visconti and Louis Chiappetta in performances in Chicago, Cleveland, and in New York’s Copland House Series. A frequent visitor to Pianofest in the Hamptons, Mr. Bognár summer activities have also featured festival performances in Russia, Austria, France, and Germany. He was the 2009 Hallock Chair of Piano with the National Repertory Orchestra in the United States, and was winner of the Artist Presentation Society Auditions, followed by two appearances at the Dame Myra Hess Series in the Chicago Cultural Center. His Los Angeles debut with the Young Musician’s Foundation in Beethoven’s First Concerto was the subject of an HD documentary directed by Christopher M. Allport. Especially noted for his insights in the works of Beethoven, Schubert, and Russian repertoire, Mr. Bognár has been selected by the Wilhelm Kempff Foundation to present Beethoven sonatas and concerti in the Amalfi Coast of Italy in Positano. In the 2013-2014 season, Mr. Bognár will present performances in the Munich Gasteig and the Vienna Mozarthaus. Rudolf Nammensma of the Dutch press recently wrote of Mr.Bognár’s semi-annual tours of the Netherlands “clearly it is time for Zsolt Bognár to be heard and to make his debut around the world.”

Zsolt Bognar headshot