Emmanuel Despax (7 February)
Born in Paris, now living in London, Emmanuel Despax studied piano at the Yehudi Menuhin School with Ruth Nye, one of Claudio Arrau’s star students. Already among today’s busiest young pianists, he has appeared with major orchestras and piano festivals throughout Europe, Australia and the UK. His work as a talented broadcaster has included presenting a probing and approachable edition of Radio 3’s Inside Music, and he is already amassing an impressive discography. Releases include concertos by Liszt pupils Urspruch and Bronsart for Hyperion’s series The Romantic Piano Concerto, and – for Signum Classics – the Chopin Preludes, Saint-Saëns’ Piano Concerto no. 2, Steve Goss’s Piano Concerto, a CD of Bach transcriptions, chosen with typical imagination and intelligence and Brahms’ First Piano Concerto with Andrew Litton conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra. Also on this disc are Brahms’ 16 Waltzes for four hands with his wife Miho Kawashima, who teaches at the Yehudi Menuhin School. They live with their two daughters in South London.