Jan Lisiecki was born in Canada in 1995. He began piano lessons at the age of five and made his concerto debut four years later. Mr. Lisiecki was brought to international attention in 2010, after the Fryderyk Chopin Institute issued his live recording of Chopin’s piano concertos; the release was awarded the Diapason Découverte. Deutsche Grammophon signed an exclusive contract with Mr. Lisiecki in 2011, when he was fifteen years old, resulting in a debut recording featuring Mozart’s Piano Concertos, K.466 and K.467. It was followed in 2013 by a recording of Chopin’s Etudes, Opuses 10 and 25. His latest album, issued in January 2016, presents Schumann’s works for piano and orchestra.
In March 2013, Mr. Lisiecki substituted at short notice for Martha Argerich, performing Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4 in Bologna with the Orchestra Mozart under Claudio Abbado. He crowned that season with an account of Schumann’s Piano Concerto at the BBC Proms. The following year he performed three Mozart concertos in one week with the Philadelphia Orchestra and made his debuts with Orchestra Filarmonica della Scala in Milan, Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich, NHK Symphony in Tokyo, and the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin. The same season, he gave debut recitals at Wigmore Hall, Rome’s Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, and in San Francisco with SF Performances. He has also been a guest with many of the world’s leading orchestras, including the Orchestre de Paris, New York Philharmonic, and BBC Symphony.
The twenty-one-year-old musician made his debut in the main auditorium at New York’s Carnegie Hall in January 2016. Other significant dates in his 2015-16 schedule include performances with the Bamberg Symphony in Lucerne, a subscription series debut with the Cleveland Orchestra, and multiple tours, including one of Europe with the Zurich Chamber Orchestra, which Mr. Lisiecki is leading from the piano. He makes his San Francisco Symphony debut with these performances.
Mr. Lisiecki was the subject of the CBC National News documentary The Reluctant Prodigy. In 2013 he received the Leonard Bernstein Award at the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival and was also named as Gramophone’s Young Artist of the Year. Mr. Lisiecki has worked with such organizations as the David Foster Foundation, the Polish Humanitarian Organization, and the Wish Upon a Star Foundation and in 2012 he was named UNICEF Ambassador to Canada.