Prof. Paul Badura-Skoda (2013)
One of the most outstanding pianists of our times; the legendary artist who for tens of years has performed in the most prestigious concert halls all over the world. His interpretations express the most characteristic features of every composer, both in terms of nationality and the historical period they represent.
Paul Badura-Skoda was born on 6 October 1927 in Vienna, where he began his piano studies in 1945. He then worked under the tutelage of the eminent pianist Edwin Fischer and has cultivated the artistic credo of his master until today.
In 1949, Wilhelm Furtwängler and Herbert von Karajan invited him to perform piano concertos. Thanks to these two conductors, at the age of 22, he joined the world piano élite. His debuts at the Salzburger Festspiele and the festivals in New York and Tokyo paved him the way to an international career. Since then he has performed as a soloist with world-renowned orchestras, conductors and artists, including Georgy Szell, Karl Bohm, Lorin Maazel, Zubin Mehta, Sir Charles Mackerras, Sir Georg Solti, Kent Nagano, John Eliot, David Oistrakh, Wolfgang Schneiderhan, Boris Pergamenschikow, and Jorg Demus.
He has recorded over 200 LPs and tens of CDs. His discography includes pieces from all musical periods, among which complete sonatas by Mozart, Beethoven and Schubert hold a special place. He was one of the first pianists to use period instruments to present works by Classical-era composers. His extensive studies on W. A. Mozart’s and J. S. Bach’s music resulted in the publication of the books Mozart Interpretation (Vienna 1957) and Bach Interpretation (Laaber-Verlag 1990).
Paul Badura-Skoda has sat on the jury of the most important piano competitions, including the International Fryderyk Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw, the International Queen Elisabeth of Belgium Music Competition in Brussels, the Ferucio Busoni International Piano Competition in Bolzano, and the Leeds International Piano Competition.
His impressive artistic achievements, cultivation of the most noble humanistic values, and search for the meaning of life, harmony and beauty in music, make Paul Badura-Skoda a luminary of contemporary world art of performance.