Stephen Hough

Stephen Hough is regarded as a renaissance man of his time. Over the course of his career he has distinguished himself as a true polymath, not only securing a reputation as a uniquely insightful concert pianist, but also as a writer and composer. Mr. Hough is commended for his mastery of the instrument along with an individual and inquisitive mind which has earned him a multitude of prestigious awards and a long-standing international following.

In 2001, Mr. Hough was the first classical performing artist to win a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship. He was awarded Northwestern University’s 2008 Jean Gimbel Lane Prize in Piano, won the Royal Philharmonic Society Instrumentalist Award in 2010, and in January 2014 was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE).

Stephen Hough has appeared with most of the major American and European orchestras and plays recitals regularly in major halls and concert series around the world. He has given recitals in such cities as Beijing, Berlin, Chicago, Dublin, Hong Kong, London, Milan, Montreal, New York, Paris, San Francisco, Stockholm, Sydney, and Tokyo. He has also appeared with the BBC, Czech, London, Los Angeles, Netherlands, New York, and Royal Philharmonics; the Atlanta, Baltimore, BBC, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Montreal, National, NHK, Pittsburgh, San Francisco, St. Louis, and Toronto symphonies; and the Budapest Festival, Cleveland, Minnesota, Philadelphia, Russian National, and Tonhalle Zürich orchestras, among others. He is a regular guest at such festivals as Aldeburgh, Aspen, Blossom, Edinburgh, Hollywood Bowl, Mostly Mozart, Musica Viva, Ravinia, Salzburg, Tanglewood, Verbier, and the BBC Proms, where he has made more than 20 concerto appearances, including performing Tchaikovsky’s complete works for piano and orchestra over the summer of 2009—a series he later repeated with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.

Highlights of Mr. Hough’s 17/18 season include re-engagements with the Detroit, Dallas, Vancouver, Baltimore, New Jersey and Utah symphonies and the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa; a four city tour on the West Coast with the Berlin Philharmonic Wind Quintet; and a fourth recital at Carnegie Hall’s Stern Auditorium, with additional recitals in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Toronto, Miami, at Duke University and four recitals throughout the state of Hawaii. Internationally, he appears with the Seoul Philharmonic and the Singapore Symphony in Asia; makes his annual appearance at the BBC Proms; plays a Beethoven cycle with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra; and returns in recital to London’s Royal Festival Hall with additional recitals in Paris at the Louvre and in Milan and Naples.

Many of Mr. Hough’s catalog of over 50 albums have garnered international prizes including the Deutscher Schallplattenpreis, Diapason d’Or, Monde de la Musique, several Grammy nominations, and eight Gramophone Magazine Awards including the 1996 and 2003 “Record of the Year” Awards and the 2008 “Gold Disc” Award, which named his complete Saint-Saëns piano concertos the best recording of the past 30 years. His 2005 live recording of the Rachmaninoff piano concertos was the fastest selling recording in Hyperion’s history, while his 1987 recording of the Hummel concertos remains Chandos’ best-selling disc to date. Recent releases on the Hyperion label include a solo recording pairing works by Scriabin and Janáček and a recording of Grieg’s Lyric Pieces. His latest album features the Dvořák and Schumann piano concertos with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra conducted by Andris Nelsons. Mr. Hough is also the featured artist in an iPad and Apple TV app about the Liszt Sonata in B Minor, which includes a fully filmed performance and commentary, released by TouchPress.

Published by Josef Weinberger, Mr. Hough has composed over 40 works for orchestra, choir, chamber ensemble and solo piano. His “Mass of Innocence and Experience” and “Missa Mirabilis” were respectively commissioned by and performed at London’s Westminster Abbey and Westminster Cathedral. In 2012, the Indianapolis Symphony commissioned and performed Mr. Hough’s own orchestration of “Missa Mirabilis,” which was subsequently performed by the BBC Symphony as part of Mr. Hough’s residency with the orchestra and recorded for Hyperion with the Colorado Symphony. Mr. Hough has also been commissioned by the musicians of the Berlin Philharmonic, London’s National Gallery, Wigmore Hall, Le Musée de Louvre and Musica Viva Australia among others and he has performed his two piano sonatas, “Sonata No. 1 (broken branches)” and “Sonata No. 2 (notturno luminoso)” on recital programs in London, New York, St. Paul and Chicago.

A noted writer, Mr. Hough regularly contributes articles for The Guardian, The Times, The Tablet, Gramophone and BBC Music Magazine and wrote a blog for The Telegraph for seven years (2008 – 2016), which became one of the most popular and influential forums for cultural discussion and for which he wrote over 600 articles. His book, The Bible as Prayer, was published by Continuum and Paulist Press in 2007. Also an avid painter, Mr. Hough gave his first exhibition in London at the Notting Hill–based Broadbent Gallery in 2012. Entitled “Appassionato,” this solo show displayed nearly twenty abstract acrylic paintings dating from 2007.

Mr. Hough resides in London where he is a visiting professor at the Royal Academy of Music and holds the International Chair of Piano Studies at his alma mater, the Royal Northern College in Manchester. He is also a member of the faculty at The Juilliard School. To find out more about Mr. Hough, please visit his website or his Facebook fan page.


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Stephen Hough
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