Described by critics as "[a] bona fide angel playing" and an "electrifying pianist", the Ukrainian-born Valentina Lisitsa has been receiving rave reviews since making her Mostly Mozart Festival debut at Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall. With her multi-faceted playing described as "dazzling", Valentina is at ease in a vast repertoire ranging from Bach and Mozart to Shostakovich and Bernstein. Her orchestral repertoire alone includes more than forty concerti, all of which have been performed. She admits to having a special affinity for the music of Rachmaninoff and Beethoven and continues to add to her vast repertoire each season. In May 2010, Lisitsa performed Rachmaninoff’s “New 5th” Concerto in her debut with the Rotterdam Symphony. She is currently embarking on an ambitious project of recording all of Beethoven's 32 piano sonatas--often a lifelong task achieved by very few artists.
With her highly individual and fearless approach to every work she performs, Valentina is routinely greeted by enthusiastic audiences throughout the world. In the 2010-11 season Valentina will appear with the symphonies of Alabama, El Paso, West Virginia, Santa Rosa, North Carolina, Dayton, and Wichita. She will also perform at Coe College, the Pro Musica Society of Montreal, and the Pamlico Musical Society. In the 2009-10 season she debuted with the Seattle Symphony and Music Director Gerard Schwarz, the Rotterdam Philharmonic and conductor Jakub Hrusa and the Pittsburgh Symphony with Music Director Manfred Honeck. Valentina Lisitsa’s 2008-2009 season spanned more than 80 performances world-wide, including a debut with the Chicago Symphony (replacing Hélène Grimaud with Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 5), her second appearance with the Festival International de Lanaudiere, and a recital tour of California. Her 2008 recital debut in Vienna's Musikverein Golden Hall received multiple standing ovations from the highly discerning Viennese audience.
Born in Kiev, Lisitsa began to study piano at the age of three and performed her first solo recital at four. After her studies - first in Lysenko School of Music and then in Kiev Conservatory -Valentina moved to the United States and shortly thereafter became a citizen. She has performed in the world's most prestigious concert venues, and, among recent collaborations, has had tours with the National Philharmonic of Russia (under Vladimir Spivakov), Warsaw Philharmonic (under Antoni Wit), Sao Paolo Symphony, New Zealand Symphony, and Prague Chamber Orchestra.
An avid chamber music player, Lisitsa has performed with Lynn Harrell, Jimmy Lin, Roberto Diaz, and Ida Haendel to name a few. But her most important musical partnership has been with the superb violinist Hilary Hahn. The pair first toured together in 2007 and in 2009 made an extensive tour throughout Europe, North and South America, and Japan.
Lisitsa has recorded 8 CDs on the Audiofon label and 3 independently released DVDs, including her best-selling set of Chopin's 24 Etudes, which long held the coveted #1 spot on the Amazon music video list. A highly anticipated new CD featuring Beethoven, Schumann, Thalberg and Liszt is scheduled for release in 2010 Ms. Lisitsa has also just completed recordings of the complete concerti of Rachmaninoff and Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini with the London Symphony Orchestra under Michael Francis, which will be released in 2011.
Valentina Lisitsa is a Bösendorfer artist and often plays the flagship Imperial model. She makes her home with her husband–and duo piano partner–and their son, in the United States.