Katya Grineva, pianist

Who or what inspired you to pursue a career in music?

I loved playing piano the moment I touched it for the first time. There was never a question of me doing anything other than becoming a concert pianist.

Who or what have been the most important influences on your musical life and career?

Natalia Schahovskaya, who was a famous cellist in Moscow and was teaching at the Moscow Conservatory, was a close friend of our family and she was my inspiration when I was young. My professor, Pavel Messner, who was a professor at Moscow Conservatory was also my biggest influence. I went to a Vladimir Horowitz concert in Moscow in 1985 – that concert was my biggest inspiration.

What have been the greatest challenges of your career so far?

The biggest challenge is to have constant flow of concerts.

Which performances/recordings are you most proud of?

I am most proud of my recent recording of complete Chopin Nocturnes.

Which particular works do you think you perform best?

Works by Mozart, Chopin, Schubert,Debussy and Ravel

How do you make your repertoire choices from season to season?

The pieces just come to me by the coincidence of hearing something on the radio or listening to recordings or having a conversation with a friend.

Do you have a favourite concert venue to perform in and why?

My favorite concert venue is Carnegie Hall Stern Auditorium. It has the most incredible history and acoustics, and it’s always an inspiration to give a concert there.

What is your most memorable concert experience?

My debut playing Mozart’s Piano Concerto No.27 with Baltimore Orchestra, Tom Hall conducting.

As a musician, what is your definition of success?

When at the end of the concert you feel that people were really moved by this musical experience.

What do you consider to be the most important ideas and concepts to impart to aspiring musicians?

I think the most important thing is always to stay connected to your heart and to your passion and keep going!

Where would you like to be in 10 years’ time?

I would like to continue to play concerts at Carnegie all every year, go on tours and be an inspiration for children

What is your idea of perfect happiness?

Staying peaceful and centered and feeling a connection with God

What is your present state of mind?



Katya Grineva and Byron Duckwell (cello) perform at Carnegie Hall, Weill Recital Hall, New York on 29 September. Playing works by Dvořák, Schubert, Liszt, and more, the concert benefits the nonprofit organization, We’ve Got Rhythm. 100 percent of proceeds from the concert will go to this charity, providing underprivileged children with the opportunity to hear classical music performed at Carnegie Hall. More information

Katya Grineva, known for her romantic piano, has played throughout the United States, Guam, Europe, South America, Africa, Hong Kong, Singapore, Japan, Australia, and the Philippines. She is the only female solo pianist to have performed in the distinguished Carnegie Hall Isaac Stern auditorium a record 17 times. A “noted exponent of Romantic
repertoire (WNYC Radio),” Katya captures audiences with her breathless, ethereal concerts.

Born in Moscow, she studied piano at the Moscow Music School, and then the School of Music at the Moscow Conservatory, where she studied with Professor Pavel Messner. She moved to New York in 1989 and received a scholarship to enter the Mannes School of Music graduate program, studying with Nina Svetlanova, followed by private coaching with Vladja Mashke, who played a key role in the young pianist’s development.

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