John O'Conor, 2014 Masterclass Faculty
Through his recitals, concerto appearances and critically acclaimed recordings, the Irish pianist John O'Conor has earned a worldwide reputation as a masterful interpreter of the Classic and early-Romantic repertoire.
Following initial studies in his native Dublin, he studied in Vienna with the renowned pedagogue Dieter Weber. He also made a special study of Beethoven with the legendary German pianist Wilhelm Kempff, and since 1997 has taught the annual Beethoven Interpretation Course inaugurated by his mentor in Kempff’s own villa in Positano, Italy. In 1973 he was awarded First Prize at the Beethoven International Piano Competition in Vienna, and in 1975 he won First Prize in the Bosendorfer Competition.
Since then he has toured the world in recital and concerto appearances, making regular visits to Europe, North America, Asia, Australia and New Zealand. He has given solo recitals in Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center (Washington), the Wigmore Hall (London), the Vienna Musikverein, the Dvorak Hall in Prague and the Bunka Kaikan (Tokyo), among other prestigious venues. Mr. O’Conor has appeared as soloist with many major orchestras including the London Symphony, Royal Philharmonic, Czech Philharmonic, Vienna Symphony, l'Orchestre National de France, the NHK Symphony in Japan, and the Cleveland, Boston, Atlanta, San Francisco, Dallas, Detroit, Montreal and Toronto Symphonies.
John O’Conor has made more than 20 recordings for the Telarc label including the complete Beethoven sonatas, bagatelles and piano concertos (with the LSO); four discs of Mozart piano concertos; numerous works of Schubert; and the complete nocturnes, sonatas and concertos of his countryman John Field.
A dedicated pedagogue and highly sought-after master teacher, John O’Conor is deeply committed to the development of young pianists in Ireland and abroad. Professor of Piano and former Director (1994-2010) of the Royal Irish Academy of Music, he also holds the post of Distinguished Visiting Artist and Professor of Piano at Shenandoah Conservatory (Winchester, VA).. In 2011 he was appointed Visiting Professor at the Showa University of Music (Tokyo, Japan). A member of the artist faculty of the Aspen Music Festival and School since 2006, he is a frequent guest artist teacher at Ravinia, Adamant (VT) and other noted summer programs, and has given master classes at many of the world’s leading music schools. His students have won many international prizes
For his services to music he has been decorated with "l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres" by the French Government, the "Ehrenkreuz fur Wissenschaft und Kunst" by the Austrian Government, the Order of the Rising Sun by the Japanese Government and has received many other awards.