With an alert and critical mind, Igor Levit places his art in the context of social events and understands their inextricable connection. He was named Musical America’s Recording Artist of the Year in 2020 and the Gilmore Artist in 2018. In June 2022 his album On DSCH received the Recording of the Year Award as well as the Instrumental Award from BBC Music Magazine.
Mr. Levit is a regular soloist with the world’s leading ensembles, including the Cleveland Orchestra, Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, and Vienna Philharmonic. He made his San Francisco Symphony debut in April 2015 as a Shenson Young Artist.
Mr. Levit’s highly acclaimed recording of the 32 Beethoven sonatas received the Gramophone Artist of the Year Award and the Opus Klassik. In spring 2021 Hanser published Mr. Levit’s first book, House Concert, co-authored by Florian Zinnecker. Fall 2022 saw the release of Mr. Levit’s solo album Tristan as well as the release of the documentary Igor Levit—No Fear.
Born in Nizhni Novgorod, Russia, Mr. Levit moved to Germany with his family at age eight. He completed his piano studies in Hannover with the highest score in the history of the institute. Mr. 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 spring 2019 he was appointed professor of piano at his alma mater, the University of Music, Theatre, and Media, in Hanover.
In recognition of his political commitment, Mr. Levit was 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 livestreamed house concerts during the spring 2020 lockdown garnered a worldwide audience, offering a sense of community and hope in a time of isolation and despair. In October 2020 Mr. Levit was recognized with the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany. In Berlin, where he makes his home, he plays on a Steinway Model D piano kindly given to him by the Trustees of Independent Opera at Sadler’s Wells.