Conor Hanick, piano
Brooklyn-based concert pianist Conor Hanick leads a free master class with UW piano students.
Pianist Conor Hanick is regarded as one of his generation’s most inquisitive interpreters of music old and new. With a unique adeptness for contemporary music reinforced by a commitment to music of all ages, Hanick’s interpretations demonstrate a “technical refinement, color, crispness and wondrous variety of articulation that benefit works by any master.” (Anthony Tommasini, New York Times)
Although his playing “defies human description” for some (Concerto Net), Hanick’s performances have received wide acclaim, described as “brilliant,” “effortlessly elegant,” (New York Times) “expert,” (Philadelphia Inquirer), “sparkling,” (Strad) and reminding the New York Times’ Anthony Tommasini of a “young Peter Serkin.” He has performed with conductors Alan Gilbert, James Levine, David Robertson, Pierre Boulez, James Conlon, Anne Manson, Carlos Izcaray, Jeffrey Milarsky, and others, in repertoire ranging from Beethoven’s “Emperor” Concerto and the keyboard concertos of Johann Sebastian Bach to Olivier Messiaen’s Des Canyons aux Etoiles… and John Adams’ Century Rolls. As a recitalist and chamber musician, Hanick has performed at the Kennedy Center, Mondavi Performing Arts Center, the Krannert Center, the Kultur und Kongresszentrum Luzern, Kyoto Concert Hall, the Dewan Pilharmonik Peronas in Malaysia, and virtually every prominent arts venue in New York City, ranging from (le) Poisson Rouge and The Kitchen to Alice Tully Hall and all three halls of Carnegie Hall.
As a fierce advocate for the music of today, Hanick has premiered over 200 works and collaborated with composers both emerging and iconic. Among the them, Hanick has worked with Pierre Boulez, Matthias Pintscher, Milton Babbitt, Heinz Holliger, John Luther Adams, and Charles Wuorinen, in addition to championing music by leading composers of his own generation, including David Fulmer, Caroline Shaw, Matthew Aucoin, Samuel Adams, Vivian Fung, and Christopher Cerrone. The “soloist of choice for such thorny works” (New York Times), Hanick recently performed Milton Babbitt’s Piano Concerto No. 2 with the Juilliard Orchestra at Alice Tully Hall; György Ligeti’s Piano Concerto with Alan Gilbert at the New York Philharmonic Biennale; Pierre Boulez’s sur Incises with James Levine at Carnegie Hall; and the world premiere of Matthew Aucoin’s Piano Concerto with the Alabama Symphony. He is currently working with composer Matthew Aucoin on a new solo piano work; Nina Young, David Hertzberg, and Marcos Balter on three works for cello and piano; Chris Cerrone on a piano concerto for prepared piano and percussion; and Samuel Carl Adams on an evening-length work for piano and electronics.
Complementing his solo and chamber music work, Hanick also works closely as an ensemble member with many new music groups and chamber orchestras. He has performed with The Knights at Tanglewood, the Kennedy Center, and on tour with Bela Fleck; the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE) at the Park Avenue Armory in Heiner Goebbels’ De Materie; the Talea Ensemble in the US premiere of Mauricio Kagel’s Sur Scene; and in collaboration with the Metropolitan Opera Chamber Players, Chatter Ensemble, ensembleNewSRQ, Alarm Will Sound, Ensemble Echappé, Talea Ensemble, Argento, and the Lucerne Festival Alumni Ensemble.
A sought after pedagogue, Hanick has delivered lectures and masterclasses at The Juilliard School, the New England Conservatory, the University of Massachusetts Amherst, the University of Iowa, and, from 2011-2013, was the Iva Dee Hiatt visiting artist at Smith College. In 2014, Hanick became a solo piano faculty artist at Music Academy of the West, an elite summer festival in Santa Barbara, and holds the Jane and Jerry Rocco Chair in Solo Piano.
Hanick completed his undergraduate studies at Northwestern and received his Masters and Doctorate from The Juilliard School, where he studied with Yoheved Kaplinsky and Matti Raekallio. He is a Yamaha Artist and lives in the Bushwick neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York.