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Biography

Harpsichord and Piano

Born in London in 1971, Thomas Adès studied piano and composition at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and read music at King’s College, Cambridge. Renowned as both a composer and a performer he works regularly with the world’s leading opera companies and festivals. Between 1993 and 1995 he was composer-in-association with the Hallé Orchestra, and from 1999 to 2008 he was artistic director of the Aldeburgh Festival. Appointed to the Richard and Barbara Debs Composer Chair at Carnegie Hall for 2007-08, Mr. Adès was previously featured by the Los Angeles Philharmonic in their Aspects of Adès festival. Mr. Adès’s music has attracted numerous awards and prizes, including the prestigious Grawemeyer Award (in 2000, for Asyla), of which he is the youngest-ever recipient.

Mr. Adès’s most recent works include a piano concerto with moving image entitled In Seven Days, written in collaboration with video artist Tal Rosner, and Lieux Retrouvés, a work for cello and piano written for Steven Isserlis. His first opera, Powder Her Face, has been performed all around the world and is available on a DVD as well as an EMI CD. Most of the composer’s music has been recorded by EMI, with whom Mr. Adès records as composer, pianist, and conductor. His opera, The Tempest, is available on an EMI CD and was awarded the Diapason d’Or de l’année and the 2010 Classical Brit award for Composer of the Year.

Recent conducting engagements include a tour with the Britten Sinfonia, concerts with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe and the Gulbenkian Orchestra as part of his Gulbenkian Foundation Residency, his debut with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, and appearances with the London Symphony, São Paulo State Symphony, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, the Philharmonia Orchestra, Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra, the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra, the BBC, Finnish and Danish radio symphony orchestras, the Birmingham Contemporary Music Group (whose music director he was between 1998 and 2000), the London Sinfonietta, Ensemble Modern, and the Athelas Ensemble. As a pianist, his most recent engagements include a recital at Carnegie Hall with Ian Bostridge, and an appearance with the New York Philharmonic. Future plans include concerts with the Accademia Santa Cecilia in Rome, Barry’s The Importance of Being Earnest with the Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, and a piano recital at the Festival de Saint Denis. Mr. Adès made his debut under San Francisco Symphony auspices in a 2013 chamber concert that featured him as pianist in several of his own works. These performances mark his conducting debut with the San Francisco Symphony.

(February 2015)