Skip to page content

Igor Levit

Igor Levit

About this Artist

With an alert and critical mind, Igor Levit places his art in the context of social events and understands it as inseparably linked to them. The New York Times describes Igor Levit as one of the “most important artists of his generation”, the New Yorker as a pianist “like no other”.

In the 2023/24 season Igor Levit performs in recital at the Musikverein Vienna, Philharmonie Berlin, La Scala Milan, Carnegie Hall New York, London’s Wigmore Hall as well as in Seoul, Tokyo, Paris, Montréal and Toronto among others. Highlights of Igor Levit’s orchestral season calendar are two cyclic projects – a Bartok cycle with the NDR Elbphilharmonieorchester and Alan Gilbert and a Brahms cycle with the Vienna Philharmonic and Christian Thielemann. Also with the Vienna Philharmonic, Igor Levit joins forces for a European tour (Jakub Hrůša) and during the Mozartwoche in Salzburg (Joana Mallwitz). Further orchestral tours in the 2023/24 season see Igor Levit perform with the Orchestra dell’Academia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia and Sir Antonio Pappano as well as the Berliner Barock Solisten. Guest engagements include performances with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and Staatskapelle Berlin with Elim Chan, the Sächsische Staatskapelle Dresden with Tugan Sokhiev, the Cleveland Orchestra with Franz Welser-Möst, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra with Joanna Mallwitz as well as with the New York Philharmonic and Jaap van Zweden. Igor Levit reunites with long-time colleagues and friends, Markus Becker, Renaud Capuçon and Julia Hagen for trio and duo concerts at the Schubertiade in Schwarzenberg, in Berlin, London, Munich and Vienna. After a very successful launch of the Piano Fest in 2023, Igor Levit curates the festival’s second edition in May 2024 in collaboration with the Lucerne Festival. Since the 2022-23 season, Igor Levit is the Co-Artistic Director of the Musikfestival Heidelberger Frühling.

Igor Levit’s 2019 highly-acclaimed first recording of the 32 Beethoven-Sonatas was awarded the Gramophone „Artist of the Year“ Award as well as the Opus Klassik in autumn 2020. In June 2022 his Album “On DSCH” has been awarded the “Recording of the Year” Award as well as the Instrumental Award of the BBC Music Magazine. Igor Levit’s new solo album for Sony Classical “Fantasia” is released in September 2023. In spring 2021 Hanser published Igor Levit’s first book “House Concert”, co-authored by Florian Zinnecker followed in Fall 2022 by the release of the feature documentary “Igor Levit – No Fear” in cinemas and on DVD.

Born in Nizhni Novgorod, Igor Levit moved to Germany with his family at the age of eight. He completed his piano studies in Hannover with the highest score in the history of the institute. His teachers included Karl-Heinz Kämmerling, Matti Raekallio, Bernd Goetzke, Lajos Rovatkay and Hans Leygraf. Igor Levit was the youngest participant in the 2005 International Arthur Rubinstein Competition in Tel Aviv, where he won silver, the special prize for chamber music, the audience prize and the special prize for the best performance of contemporary pieces. In 2018 Igor Levit has been named the eighth recipient of the prestigious "Gilmore Artist Award" - conferred only every four years to a classical pianist and recognized as the largest and one of the world's most distinguished music awards. In spring 2019 he was appointed professor for piano at his alma mater, the University of Music, Theatre and Media Hanover.

For his political commitment Igor Levit has been awarded the 5th International Beethoven Prize in 2019 followed by the award of the "Statue B" of the International Auschwitz Committee in January 2020. His 53 Twitter-streamed live house concerts during the lockdown in spring 2020 garnered a worldwide audience, offering a sense of community and hope in a time of isolation and desperation. In October 2020 Igor Levit was recognized with the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany. In Berlin, where he makes his home, Igor Levit is playing on a Steinway D Grand Piano kindly given to him by the Trustees of Independent Opera at Sadler’s Wells.