The Chicago Tribune

“This was delectable playing done with an electric crackle that Liszt himself would have applauded.”

Bolivia

Walter Ponce

BIOGRAPHY

Internationally acclaimed pianist Walter Ponce has performed around the world as a soloist with symphony orchestras, in solo recitals, and in collaboration with many renowned artists. He has been heard in concert halls of almost every major city of North and South America, in many countries of Europe and in Japan, Korea, and China. For many years he was under the management of the Wilford Division of Columbia Artists Management (CAMI), in a roster that included pianists Martha Argerich, Alicia de Larrocha, and Maurizio Pollini

Of his performance with Georg Solti, the Chicago Tribune headlined “Pianist Shines—Walter Ponce is Magical in his Chicago Symphony Debut.” Following his New York solo debut, the New York Times critic wrote: “Each music season brings its quota of surprises, and Walter Ponce’s recital might qualify as one of the current winter crops… It all added up to an impressive showing.” About Ponce’s Tully Hall recital, New York Magazine‘s renowned critic Peter G. Davis wrote: “Ponce’s playing could hardly have shown more discipline, muscular control, or imaginative use of the piano’s expressive resources. Better still is his ability to define and articulate each score with such balanced precision and unforced eloquence, creating a beautifully proportioned musical context that allows the composer to speak naturally and spontaneously in his own voice.” At the invitation of Daniel Barenboim, Ponce was featured in Chicago’s prestigious Orchestra Hall Piano series, about which the critic of the Chicago Tribune wrote: “This was delectable playing done with an electric crackle that Liszt himself would have applauded.”

Walter Ponce has performed in collaboration with numerous distinguished musicians including Sydney Harth, Jean-Jacques Kantarow, Mark Kaplan, Ani Kavafian, Jaime Laredo, Max Rabinovitsj, Zara Nelsova, Elmar Oliveira, Leslie Parnas, Alexander Schneider, Walter Trampler, the Cleveland, Audubon, American, and Lenox Quartets, and guest appearances with Lincoln Center’s Chamber Music Society. He has participated in festivals at Marlboro, Ravinia, Bermuda, Seattle, Caramoor, Aspen, Sintra and Evora in Portugal, Tangiers in Morocco, and Cervantino and San Miguel de Allende in Mexico.

An advocate of new music, Ponce has given premieres of more than two hundred works, including those by George Rochberg, Karel Husa, George Crumb, William Bolcom, and Morton Gould. Ponce premiered and made the original recording of George Crumb’s Voice of the Whale under the guidance of the composer. Composers Paul Reale and Ezra Laderman have written piano concertos specifically for Ponce. The latter was premiered at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.

TV stations across the United States and abroad have shown many of his solo and duo recitals; nationwide broadcasts by National Public Radio and worldwide through the Voice of America, and recitals for the BBC and Radio Basel, Switzerland. In 1995, at the invitation of then Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali, Ponce presented a solo recital as part of the United Nations 50th anniversary celebrations.

VIDEO/SERIES

SCHUBERT PIANO SONATA IN B FLAT

Legendary pianist Walter Ponce plays F. Schubert piano Sonata in B Flat, D. 960 at the Colony Theater, Miami Beach, on 2011.

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