KATIA MICHEL, Swiss-Spanish pianist regularly dazzles critics and audiences with her “great musicality and poetic elegance,” as well as her " brilliant technique.” Since her debut at age 17 playing the second Rachmaninoff Concerto, she has performed extensively in Europe, the US and Central America.
She has been featured as soloist with many orchestras, including the Swiss and Spanish Radio and Television Orchestras, the Böhmische Kammerphilharmonie, the Orchestre Régional de Cannes, the San Salvador Symphony, the Sinfónica del Vallés and the Real Orquesta Sinfónica de Sevilla with conductors such us P. Bender, P. Béran, J. Mena, U. Munt and U. Schneider. Ms. Michel is a regular guest at festivals, including the Gstaad New Years Festival, the Antibes Génération Virtuoses, the Schubertiada de Vilabertrán, and the festivals of Suchitoto, Gijón, Blanes, and Sitges.
Beginning with her first award at age 7 in Stresa, Italy, prizes in various competitions have made Katia Michel one of Spain’s best known young pianists, leading to performances in most of the country’s renowned halls: these include Barcelona’s Palau de la Mœsica and Auditori, Madrid’s Teatro Monumental and Sevilla’s Teatro de la Maestranza. Among many top awards, she has garnered first prizes at the Concurso Permanente de Juventudes Musicales de España in 2004, the Andorra International Competition and the Rotary International Competition in Mallorca. She was the representative of Spain in the European Federation of Youth Competition, and was a finalist of the 2000 Grand Prix Eurovision for young musicians in Lugano, Switzerland.
Ms. Michel studied with Claude Frank at the Yale School of Music, with Dmitri Bashkirov at the Escuela Reina Sofia de Madrid and with Stanislav Pochekin at the Barcelona Conservatory. She has also worked extensively with pianists Ilan Rogoff, and with the late Alicia de Larrocha, for whom she first played at age 8.
Critical response to Katia’s interpretation of Spanish music has been particularly enthusiastic : “It was luminous and full of fresh air,” (El Punt diari) and “played with magnificence” (Avui). She recently released a solo CD featuring works of Isaac Albeniz on the label Columna Musica and she received the Rosa Sabater prize for Spanish music in the 2010 Jaen International Competition. On another Columna musica release, she performs music by the Catalan composer Xavier Montsalvatge.
An enthusiastic chamber musician, Katia Michel performs regularly with cellist Verena Sennekamp, with pianist David Kaplan, and with her brother, violinist William Michel. This season, she begins collaborating with the Quartet Albéniz. In addition to her activity as a performer, Ms. Michel has given public Masterclasses and has taught in the Yale University School of Music. katiamichel.com