Khatia Buniatishvili

French naturalized Georgian pianist (1987, Tbilisi)

Khatia Buniatishvili was nominated "Rising Star" in 2012 by the Musikverein and the Konzerthaus in Vienna. She has a passion for the pianists Rachmaninoff, Sviatoslav Richter and Glenn Gould - seeing herself as “fundamentally from the 20th century”.

Khatia Buniatishvili and her older sister Gvantsa discovered the piano very early on thanks to their mother. At only age six, Khatia gave her first concert as a soloist with an orchestra, before being invited to perform in Europe, Russia, in Israel and the US. In 2003, while still a student at the Tbilisi State Conservatory, she was awarded the Special Prize of the Horowitz Piano Competition in Kiev and met Prof. Oleg Maisenberg, who offered her to study with him at the Vienna University of Music and Performing Arts. Five years later, she was awarded the Third Prize at the Rubinstein International Piano Master Competition, where she was also elected "Best Performer of a Chopin piece".

Khatia has performed with the Orchestre de Paris conducted by Paavo Järvi, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Vienna Symphony, the Orchestre National de France under the direction of Daniele Gatti and the London Symphony. At the same time, she has regularly performed as a chamber musician, including in a trio with Gidon Kremer and Renaud Capuçon or performing piano duets with her sister Gvantsa. Of Georgian origin, Khatia has admitted that the traditional music of her native country has surely influenced her musicality, giving a warmer touch to her playing style, while also remaining melancholic and plaintive. “The piano is the darkest of instruments,” she said, a “symbol of musical solitude”.

On March 15th, 2015,  musicians of Orchestre Régional de Cannes-Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur offered her to succeed Brigitte Engerer as the orchestra's patron, which she accepted with enthusiasm (source : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zsvmYau3uJI). In this context, she performed Mozart's Piano Concerto n°10 with her sister Gvantsa at Palais des Festivals à Cannes on January 13th, 2017.

5 landmark dates in the life of Khatia Buniatishvili:

2003: Awarded Special Prize of the Horowitz Piano Competition in Kiev

2007: Travelled to Vienna to study with Oleg Maisenberg at the Vienna University of Music

2008: 2th Arthur Rubinstein International Piano Master Competition, awarded Third Prize and “Audience Favourite” Prize

2010: BBC Radio 3 New Generation Artists

2014: Tour in China and North America.

Biography from Radio France’s document database, September 2014.