The Hellenic-American Cultural Foundation and The Alexander S. Onassis Public Benefit Foundation USA present one of the most promising musicians of his generation, Greek pianist Vassilis Varvaresos for a performance on Nov. 30 at 7 PM. The event will be held at the Merkin Concert Hall at the Kaufman Music Center, Goodman House, 129 West 67th Street in Manhattan.
Varvaresos has appeared on major stages in Europe and the US, and is regularly invited to perform at festivals around the world. Following his recital at Carnegie Zankel Hall, he was invited to perform at the White House for President Barack Obama.
Among the most promising pianists of his generation and a laureate of many international competitions, such as Young Concert Artists, New York when he was 14 years old, Varvaresos is an exceptional and gifted artist. His most recent prizes include the George Enescu International Competition 2014 in Bucharest, Romania and the Piano Masters Competition 2015 in Monte Carlo. As the New York Concert Review observed about his performance style, “Varvaresos not only has a natural yet finely honed technique, it springs as one with the wide scope of profound musicianship. Varvaresos engaged his audience with a performance that sizzled from start to finish.”
Born in Thessaloniki, Greece in 1983, Varvaresos began studying music at the age of five, and received a scholarship to the Conservatory of Northern Greece. He continued his studies at the Conservatory with Milena Mollova. He won First Prize in the 1995 Petar Konjovic International Competition in Belgrade, the 1996 Pan-Hellenic Young Artist Competition in Athens, and was chosen as one of eleven young musicians from around the world to perform in Monte Carlo in a special “little Mozarts” concert organized by Italy’s RAI TV.
Varvaresos holds a bachelor of music degree and a master of music degree from the Juilliard School, where he studied with Jerome Lowenthal. His paper on Claude Debussy, which won the Scholastic Distinction Award from Juiliard, was published in Greece by Kodikas Publications. In May 2011 Varvaresos received his Doctorate in Piano Performance from Juilliard. He was a student of Jerome Lowenthal, Yoheved Kaplinsky, and Robert MacDonald. His doctorate advisor was Carl Schachter.
Varvaresos finished his studies with the prestigeous Diplome d’ Artiste-Interpete degree at the Conservatoire Nationale et Superieur de Musique et de Danse in Paris, France with Michel Dalberto.
Varvaresos is recipient of Musical Studies Grants from the Bagby Foundation and the George and Marie Vergottis Foundation. Since 2008, he has also been the recipient of the Gina Bachauer Foundation Grant for Outstanding Talent in Music and Onassis Foundation Grant. This season marks Varvaresos’ debut recitals in the Tonhalle of Zurich, Musikverein of Vienna, and the Berlin Philharmonie. He also performed at the Salle Gaveau of Paris, and Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw, while he is also appearing at the Enescu Festival and giving recitals and masterclasses in California, Cincinatti, OH, and Charleston, SC. Highlights of previous seasons include recitals at the Chopin Festival in Nohant, at the Lisztomanias Festival in Chateauroux, and at the SenLiszt Festival of the Gyorgy Cziffra Foundation. In October 2010, as a special guest of the His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios of the Greek Orthodox Church of America, Varvaresos performed Chopin’s Piano Concerto in E minor at Alice Tully Hall, while in the winter of 2008 he was asked to be the soloist with the Athens State Symphony Orchestra, representing Greece on a two-week tour of China, for the 2008 Bejing Olympic Games.
Varvaresos has also recorded three CDs. His 4th solo album includes various ‘Valses’ and will be released in 2017.
A reception with the artist will follow the Nov. 30 performance. The recital and reception are free of charge, but reservations are required and can be made online at www.hacfoundation.org/events-2016/