Born in Buenos Aires, Martha Argerich studied piano from the age of five with Vincenzo Scaramuzza. Considered a child prodigy, she performed on stage at an early age. In 1955 she travelled to Europe and studied in London, Vienna and Switzerland with Seidlhofer, Gulda, Magaloff, Madame Lipatti and Stefan Askenase.
She has been a permanent guest of the most prestigious orchestras and festivals in Europe, Japan, America and Israel, performing with Zubin Mehta and Lahav Shani. She regularly performs and records with cellist Mischa Maisky, violinist Gidon Kremer, pianists Daniel Barenboim and Lilya Zilberstein, and the sorely missed Nelson Freire.
Her most recent recordings include the Grammy Award-winning Beethoven Concertos № 1 and № 3, and Mozart Concertos № 20 and № 25 with Claudio Abbado. Martha Argerich collects awards for her recordings: Grammy Award for the Bartók and Prokofiev concertos, Gramophon's "Artist of the Year", "Best Piano Recording of the Year" for the Chopin, "choque" from Le Monde de la Musique for her recital in Amsterdam, and a German Record Critics' Prize, Grammy Award for Prokofiev's Cinderella with Mikhail Pletnev.
With the aim of helping young people, in 1998 she became artistic director of the Beppu Festival in Japan. Martha Argerich has received numerous honours: Officer of the Order of Arts and Letters in 1996 and Commander of the Order of Arts and Letters in 2004 by the French government, the Order of the Rising Sun, awarded by the Emperor of Japan, and the prestigious Praemium imperiale of the Japan Arts Association, Kennedy Center Honors in December 2016 by President Barack Obama, Commendatore dell'Ordine al Merito della Repubblica Italiana in 2018 by President Sergio Mattarella.