Pianist Anna Vinnitskaya launched her international career after winning the celebrated Queen Elisabeth Competition in Brussels in 2007 – and this as only the second woman in the event’s history to attain this title after an interval of more than fifty years. Since that time she has mesmerised audiences and critics alike not only with her flawless technique, which came naturally to her during her childhood thanks to her parents – also pianists – but also through her ability to “paint” great canvases on the piano and through her gift for telling stories. “Her approach is poetically inflected without ever descending into slushiness, and she could never be accused of ugliness of tone or of using the piece as a vehicle for empty display,” wrote Gramophone magazine in 2015. The Washington Post added that she plays with passion as well: “Vinnitskaya is a true lioness at the keyboard, devouring the most difficult pages of music with adamantine force. She seemed almost to relish the technical thickets […]”
Visitors to the Prague Spring 2022 can also witness this for themselves when the artist appears as a chamber musician alongside stellar Austrian violinist Emmanuel Tjeknavorian and one of the world’s leading cellists, Daniel Müller-Schott. In addition to chamber music, Vinnitskaya also performs with prominent world orchestras and conductors. We could mention the tour she undertook last season with the Berlin Philharmonic under its Chief Conductor Kirill Petrenko, the culmination of which was her debut at the Salzburg Festival.
A native of the Russian city of Novorossiysk, she made her home in Hamburg in 2001, where she studied at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater; after graduating she began teaching at the school at the age of twenty-six as one of the youngest members of staff. Her repertoire spans an arc from Bach to contemporary music; she was critically acclaimed for her recording of works by Ravel, which brought her Echo Klassik and Diapason d’or awards and was selected as Editor’s Choice in Gramophone magazine. In Prague she will perform Ravel’s Valses nobles et sentimentales, and the virtuosic La valse. Vinnitskaya has developed a special bond with Chopin and with Russian composers. For the Russian part of her debut programme at the Firkušný festival she chose the music of piano mystic and compositional visionary Alexander Scriabin, the 150th anniversary of whose birth occurred in January of this year.