Recognised as one of the best artists of his time, Mikhail Pletnev is a versatile pianist, conductor and composer. His musicality encompasses dazzling technique, intense emotion and sophisticated interpretation that fuse instinct and intellect.
Born in Russia in 1957 into a musical family, he learned to play multiple instruments at a young age. He then studied at the Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow. At the age of 21, he won the Gold Medal and First Prize at the 1978 Tchaikovsky International Piano Competition, which propelled him onto the international stage.
In 1990, he formed the first independent orchestra in Russian history. His long-held dream became a reality when the most outstanding musicians from all countries joined him to play in his Russian National Orchestra. Mikhail Pletnev speaks of it as his greatest joy, and today he is its artistic director and principal conductor. In 2006 he founded the Mikhail Pletnev Fund for the Support of National Culture, a non-profit organisation dedicated to major cultural initiatives and projects.
His recordings have received numerous awards, including a Grammy Award for an album based on his arrangement of Prokofiev's Cinderella and a Gramophone Award for his recording of Scarlatti's Keyboard Sonatas (Virgin/EMI).