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Gabriela Montero's visionary interpretations and unique improvisational gifts have won her a devoted following around the world. "I connect to my audience in a completely unique way - and they connect with me. Because improvisation is such a huge part of who I am, it is the most natural and spontaneous way I can express myself.” Both in recital and after a concerto performance, Gabriela often invites her audience to suggest themes and melodies for her improvisations. Gabriela’s 2011-2012 season includes performances with the Atlanta and Pittsburgh Symphonies, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Academy of St Martin in the Fields, Vienna Radio Symphony, RTE National Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, Zurich Chamber Orchestra, the orchestra of the Komischer Oper Berlin, and the Czech National Symphony Orchestra. She made her debut with the Chicago Symphony at the Ravinia Festival in 2012. She will also give recitals at Vienna Konzerthaus, London Wigmore Hall, Geneva Victoria Hall, Istanbul CRR Concert Hall, and at the Ruhr, St Denis, Aldeburgh, Rheinfelden, Espinho and Lugano Festivals. It has long been a desire to take her improvisations to the next logical step of composition. Gabriela has enthusiastically embarked on this new phase of her career by

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Gabriela Montero's visionary interpretations and unique improvisational gifts have won her a devoted following around the world. "I connect to my audience in a completely unique way - and they connect with me. Because improvisation is such a huge part of who I am, it is the most natural and spontaneous way I can express myself.” Both in recital and after a concerto performance, Gabriela often invites her audience to suggest themes and melodies for her improvisations.

Gabriela’s 2011-2012 season includes performances with the Atlanta and Pittsburgh Symphonies, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Academy of St Martin in the Fields, Vienna Radio Symphony, RTE National Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, Zurich Chamber Orchestra, the orchestra of the Komischer Oper Berlin, and the Czech National Symphony Orchestra. She made her debut with the Chicago Symphony at the Ravinia Festival in 2012. She will also give recitals at Vienna Konzerthaus, London Wigmore Hall, Geneva Victoria Hall, Istanbul CRR Concert Hall, and at the Ruhr, St Denis, Aldeburgh, Rheinfelden, Espinho and Lugano Festivals.

It has long been a desire to take her improvisations to the next logical step of composition. Gabriela has enthusiastically embarked on this new phase of her career by composing a new work – ExPatria – for piano and orchestra. Her composition received its premiere performances in London and on tour in Germany with the Academy of St Martin in the Fields.
 
Ms Montero’s recordings include a solo disc featuring Rachmaninoff, Chopin, and Liszt. The release of her subsequent CD, Bach and Beyond, was a Billboard bestseller and introduced listeners to her unique blend of traditional concert repertoire and dazzling trademark improvisations. Her next album, Baroque, also pairing traditional fare with improvisation, garnered two Grammy nominations (for Best Classical Crossover Album and Best Producer). Montero returned to the studio in February 2010 to record her latest album, entitled Solatino – a disc dedicated to Latin American repertoire that is inspired by her Venezuelan homeland. Montero toured to several German cities following its release in October 2010. Each of the performances was recorded live by Abbey Road Live for immediate release and purchase by the audience. The best tracks from these performances were later compiled into a singular compilation disc entitled Live In Germany.

In January 2010, Montero was invited to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland where she gave a seminar to a rapt audience on The Art of Improvisation. She was also invited to speak at the Cultural Leaders Dinner and The Power of Music Seminar. In January 2009, Montero was invited to perform at President Barack Obama's inauguration ceremony in Washington D.C. At this truly historic occasion, Montero joined cellist Yo-Yo Ma, violinist Itzhak Perlman, and clarinettist Anthony McGill in a performance of Air and Simple Gifts, by the composer John Williams. Other past highlights include her acclaimed performances with the New York Philharmonic, L.A. Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl, Philharmonia Orchestra at the Royal Festival Hall, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Kremerata Baltica, and UBS Verbier Chamber Orchestra under Antonio Pappano at the Tuscan Sun Festival, besides recitals at the Edinburgh Festival, Verbier Festival, Wigmore Hall, Klavier-Festival Ruhr, Kölner Philharmonie, Tonhalle Düsseldorf, International Istanbul Music Festival, Bergen Festival, Kennedy Center Washington D.C., National Arts Centre Ottawa, Orchard Hall Tokyo, and the "Progetto Martha Argerich" Festival in Lugano, where she is invited annually. Beyond the concert stage, Montero has been heard on NPR's Performance Today "Sing It and Wing It", where listeners call in to suggest melodies upon which she then improvises. She has also been profiled on CBS's 60 Minutes.

Born in Caracas, Venezuela, Gabriela gave her first public performance at the age of five. Aged eight she made her concerto debut with the Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra conducted by José Antonio Abreu and was granted a scholarship from the Venezuelan Government to study in the U.S.A. She currently resides in Los Angeles with her two daughters.

For more information, please contact: Derek Chandruang 
E: dchandruang@imgartists.com T: +44 (0) 20 7957 5810
This is Gabriela Montero’s official biography for the 2012/13 season. Please replace all previously dated materials

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Photos

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Reviews

"Montero's playing had everything: crackling rhythmic brio, subtle shadings, steely power in climactic moments, soulful lyricism in the ruminative passages and, best of all, unsentimental expressivity"

Anthony Tommasini, New York Times

"Montero galvanized the audience through her performances of Brahms, Lecuona, Ginastera and her own improvisations [formed by taking motif suggestions from the audience]. These spontaneous compositions are steeped in expression and feeling. The audience were dazzled by her impeccable displays of compositional excellence. Montero exposes the world’s loss of improvisation and virtuosic composition."

Peter Korfmacher, Leipziger Volkszeitung

"Gabriela Montero demonstrated exceptional mastery, and seeing such music created in front of your own eyes was an absolutely unique experience... there are not many artists about whom it can truly be said that their talent borders on genius."

Antoine Leboyer, ConcertoNet.com

"The piano recital by Gabriela Montero at the Vienna Konzerthaus was like a visit from outer space. First... the Venezuelan pianist immersed herself completely in the three interludes, Op 117 by Johannes Brahms - and then presented a massive version of Franz Liszt's B minor Sonata, played already like music that was invented that very moment. Gruff and brooding in detail, with calm and overview of the architectural design Montero upheld an almost unbearable tension during the gigantic work..."

Der Standard

"Montero is the sort of artist whom classical music lovers should most appreciate. "

concertonet.com

"Of the million-plus ways to play the Grieg Piano Concerto, none truly compares to the way Gabriela Montero played it Friday night at Severance Hall. "

Cleveland.com

"...this was a command performance by a world class musician, and it was appropriately rewarded with a standing ovation. Ms. Montero was gracious and charming throughout the show, and by the end of the afternoon, her first Bermuda Festival audience had fallen quite hopelessly in love with her"

The Royal Gazette Online

"Queen of Improvisation "

Denver Post

"She is such a fantastic improviser. I love that. "

German Conductor Christoph Koenig

"I've seen great performances, but nothing like this before "

The Independent

"[Gabriela] radiated warmth and harmony with a great sense of calm and concentration. Gabriela Montero played powerfully with bite and breathed with every line. Her touch seemed to lie deep into the keys, the Chopin sounded very earthy in a new kind of musical colour. Also impressive was her natural and fluid posture, even when playing the most virtuosic, cascading arpeggios in the fastest tempi, playing boldly in her high heels and elegantly on her tip toes. "

IOCO

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Discography