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ROBERT EDWARD THIES is an artist renowned for his consummate musicianship and poetic temperament. He first captured worldwide attention in 1995 when he won the Gold Medal at the Second International Prokofiev Competition in St. Petersburg, Russia. With this victory, Thies became the only American pianist to win first prize in a Russian piano competition since Van Cliburn’s famed triumph in Moscow in 1958.
Thies enjoys a diverse career as an orchestral soloist, recitalist, and chamber musician. His concerto repertoire includes over 35 works, spanning 200 years. He has appeared with such orchestras as the St. Petersburg Philharmonic, the National Symphony of Mexico, the Auckland Philharmonia (New Zealand), the Pasadena Symphony, and the Naples Philharmonic. His concerts have been broadcast throughout the United States, Russia, Estonia, Latvia, Bolivia, Hungary, Mexico, and New Zealand.
Thies is a frequent recitalist in the United States and abroad, and he is known for his genuine interpretations of intriguing and delicately balanced programs. Also a dedicated chamber musician, Thies continues to expand his already impressive repertoire and collaborates with many esteemed musicians. He has appeared with established ensembles such as the Angeles, Calder, and New Hollywood String Quartets, and has also performed on the chamber series of Camerata Pacifica, Mladi, Dilijan, and Jacaranda. He is founder and artistic director of The Thies Consort, which performs a wide range of works of varying instrumentation and size, thus allowing for innovative and unique programming with musical continuity based on a style, composer, or other concept.
In 2002, in conjunction with the Hollywood premiere of Roman Polanski’s film The Pianist, Thies performed Wladislaw Szpilman’s Concertino for Piano and Orchestra with the Los Angeles Jewish Symphony. To commemorate the 50th anniversary of Arnold Schoenberg’s death in 2001, he was invited to Mexico City’s Palacio de Bellas Artes to perform the composer’s Piano Concerto with the National Symphony of Mexico. During the fall of 1997 Thies worked alongside distinguished Polish composer Henryk Górecki in the United States premiere of his Sonata for Piano. He has performed at the music festivals of Ravinia, Aspen, Sedona, and Cape May, the Music Academy of the West, as well as the San Luis Obispo Mozart Festival.
In Los Angeles, Thies has worked and recorded with many of the top studio musicians, and has also worked with film composers James Newton Howard, James Horner, Danny Elfman, and Lalo Schifrin. His recordings can be found on the Centaur, Albany, and Golden Tone labels.
Thies is also sought after as a master class teacher, chamber music coach, lecturer, and adjudicator across the globe. In 2003, he joined the faculty of the American Institute of Musical Studies in Graz, Austria, to work beside his former teacher, Harold Heiberg, an authority on German art song.
Born in New Jersey in 1971, Thies now resides in Los Angeles. His teachers have included Robert Turner and Daniel Pollack, both protégés of the legendary Russian pedagogue Rosina Lhevinne, and the great pianist Josef Lhevinne. Thies is a Steinway artist. For more information, visit www.robertthies.org.