Biography

“And what can I say about the excellent Tom Poster? His versatility and unerring sense of what works best marks him out as a musician’s musician and everyone in the business should be beating a path to his door”
– MusicWeb International, Cheltenham Festival 2011

Tom Poster is internationally recognised as a pianist of outstanding artistry and versatility, equally in demand as soloist and chamber musician across an unusually extensive repertoire. He has been described as “a marvel, [who] can play anything in any style” (The Herald), “an unparalleled sound-magician” (General-Anzeiger), a “young lion” (The Guardian), and as possessing “great authority and astounding virtuosity” (Est Républicain). He won First Prize at the Scottish International Piano Competition 2007, the Ensemble Prize at the Honens International Piano Competition 2009, and the keyboard sections of the Royal Over-Seas League and BBC Young Musician of the Year Competitions in 2000.

Since his London concerto debut at the age of 13, Tom has appeared in a wide-ranging concerto repertoire of over 30 major works, including Beethoven with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra at the Royal Albert Hall, Brahms and Ligeti with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Robin Ticciati, Chopin with the European Union Chamber Orchestra, Grieg with the Hallé at Bridgewater Hall and the China National Symphony in Beijing, John Ireland with the State Capella Philharmonic in St Petersburg, Rachmaninov with the BBC Philharmonic/Yan Pascal Tortelier and BBC Scottish Symphony/James Loughran, Schumann with the Atlantic Classical Orchestra in Florida, Beethoven Triple with Southbank Sinfonia/Vladimir Ashkenazy, and Scott Bradley’s Cat Concerto with Aurora Orchestra/Nicholas Collon.

Tom features regularly on BBC Radio 3 as soloist and chamber musician, and appeared in both capacities at the BBC Proms in 2008, 2009 and 2011. He has given solo recitals at the Barbican Hall and at the Brighton, City of London, Edinburgh, Presteigne and Spoleto Festivals, as well as in Canada, France, Germany, Spain and Switzerland. Tom enjoys duo partnerships with Alison Balsom, Guy Johnston and Jennifer Pike, has recently collaborated with Ian Bostridge at the Aldeburgh Festival and Steven Isserlis at Wigmore Hall, and has performed piano quintets with the Badke, Brodsky, Carducci, Elias, Endellion, Martinu, Medici, Navarra, Sacconi and Skampa Quartets. As pianist of the Aronowitz Ensemble (BBC New Generation Artists 2006-2008), he has appeared at the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, the Aldeburgh, Bath and Cheltenham Festivals, and on several occasions at Wigmore Hall. The Aronowitz Ensemble’s two CDs on the Sonimage label have received great critical acclaim, as have Tom’s two recent discs for Chandos, including Chausson’s Concert with Jennifer Pike and the Doric Quartet. His debut solo CD, In Dance and Song, was released on Champs Hill Records in January 2014.

Alongside his busy pianistic career, Tom has presented programmes on Beethoven and Schumann for BBC Radio Scotland, appeared as guest expert in BBC Four’s coverage of the Leeds International Piano Competition, given lecture-recitals at the Two Moors Festival and masterclasses at Dartington International Summer School, acted as Artistic Director of Chacombe Music Festival, and appeared as Reciter in Walton’s Façade at Musicfest Aberystwyth. Tom’s arrangements of Gershwin and Cole Porter songs have been extensively performed and recorded. Recent commissions undertaken as a composer include a chamber opera for puppets, The Depraved Appetite of Tarrare the Freak, for Wattle and Daub theatre company, and a piece about unusual sea-creatures, Turn to the Watery World!, for Alison Balsom.

Born in 1981, Tom studied with Joan Havill at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, where he held a Postgraduate Fellowship, and at King’s College, Cambridge, where he gained a Double First in Music.

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