One of the brightest young instrumental artists to emerge from Finland, Juho Pohjonen has attracted great attention as one of the Nordic country's most intriguing and talented pianists. Widely praised for his broad range of repertoire from Bach to Salonen, his interpretations are known for their intensity, thoughtfulness and fearless musical conviction. A favorite of Robert Spano and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, it was said of his most recent performances of Prokofiev’s Concerto No. 5 in G Major: “His playing is simply extraordinary. This was a night when a good view of the soloist’s hands was worth extra money. It was a performance worth recording of a work worth hearing.” (The Atlanta Journal Constitution)
Juho Pohjonen opens the 2015-2016 season with the Buffalo Philharmonic, performing Grieg’s Piano Concerto with conductor JoAnn Falletta. He performs the work again across England in performances with the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra and Kirill Karabits. In New York, Mr. Pohjonen continues his close association with The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, performing a four-hand program of Bartók and Lutoslawski as well as a chamber music program with internationally renowned horn virtuoso Radovan Vlatković in Alice Tully Hall. In spring 2016, Juho will embark on a chamber music tour with violinist Karen Gomyo and cellist Christian Poltéra. Summer festival appearances include a return visit to Music@Menlo, and performances with Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center in Saratoga Springs as well as in Alice Tully Hall for their inaugural “Summer Evenings” series in New York City.
Recent concert highlights include performances with the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, debut performances with Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich performing Esa-Pekka Salonen’s Piano Concerto with conductor Lionel Bringuier, a stunning recital debut at the Ravinia Festival, performances of Mozart in Seoul with the KBS Symphony Orchestra, as well as in Mexico’s Palacio De Bellas Artes with the Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional and a U.S. tour with The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. In addition, Mr. Pohjonen has performed recently with Philharmonia Orchestra and Esa-Pekka Salonen, Helsinki Philharmonic with Olari Elts, Bournemouth Symphony with James MacMillan and Iceland Symphony with Francois-Xavier Roth. He appears frequently with The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, since being selected as one of the musicians to join the “CMS Two Residency Program for Outstanding Young Artists” from 2009-2012.
Mr. Pohjonen has given recitals in New York (Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center), Washington, D.C. (Kennedy Center), San Francisco, Vancouver, Detroit, La Jolla and in London (Wigmore Hall), Hamburg, St. Petersburg, Helsinki, Warsaw, Hong Kong, Antwerp, and at the Lucerne Piano, Gilmore, Savonlinna, Bergen and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Festivals. He has performed with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, Atlanta Symphony, Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra, Danish National, Malmö, Finnish Radio Symphony, Swedish Radio Symphony, Helsinki Philharmonic, Avanti! Chamber Orchestra, National Arts Centre Orchestra, Scottish Chamber and Philharmonia Orchestras, Bournemouth Symphony, Zagrebacka Filharmonija and Lahti Symphony, with which he toured Japan.
Mr. Pohjonen's debut recording Plateaux features Scandinavian composer Pelle Gudmundsen-Holmgreen's piano concerto Plateaux pour Piano et Orchestre with the Danish National Symphony Orchestra and solo piano piece For Piano. His sensational opening recital at Music@Menlo’s 2010 Festival led to a recording for the Music@Menlo Live 2010 series entitled Maps and Legends: Disc 8. Works featured on the album are Mozart's Sonata in A Major, K.331, Grieg's Ballade in g minor in the Form of Variations on a Norwegian Folk Song, Op. 24 and Handel's Suite in B-flat Major.
Mr. Pohjonen's studies began in 1989 when he entered the Junior Academy of the Sibelius Academy, Helsinki. He studied with Meri Louhos and Hui-Ying Liu at the Sibelius Academy where he completed his Master's Degree in 2008. Mr. Pohjonen has also participated in several master classes of world-class pianists such as Sir András Schiff, Leon Fleisher, Jacob Lateiner and Barry Douglas.
In 2009, Juho Pohjonen was selected by Sir András Schiff as winner of the Klavier Festival Ruhr Scholarship. In addition, he has won numerous prizes in both Finnish and international competitions, including First Prize at the 2004 Nordic Piano Competition in Nyborg, Denmark, First Prize at the 2000 International Young Artists Concerto Competition in Stockholm, the Prokofiev Prize at the 2003 AXA Dublin International Piano Competition and a prize at the 2002 Helsinki International Maj Lind Piano Competition.
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