Martha Argerich

pianist
Born June 5, 1941 in Buenos Aires.


With her broad and varied repertoire, carefully chosen and never conformist, Martha Argerich has dominated the piano world since the 1960s. Endowed with a phenomenal technique, she has been able to put her personal stamp on the most demanding works in the repertoire, from Liszt to Prokofiev, and at the same time draw out all the keyboard colour for the musical worlds of Ravel and Messiaen. An impassioned and instinctively collaborative musician, she has increasingly focused less on solo recitals and more on chamber music and concertos, in fruitful partnerships with violinist Gidon Kremer and conductor Charles Dutoit.

  • 1949: Concert début in Buenos Aires at the age of eight.
  • 1955: After studies in Argentina, Argerich embarks for Europe to study with Friedrich Gulda, Madeleine Lipatti and Nikita Magaloff.
  • 1957: First Prizes for piano in the Geneva and Busoni Competitions.
  • July 1960: Recording début with solo pieces by Chopin, Brahms, Liszt, Ravel and Prokofiev.
  • 1964: After a period of self-doubt, Argerich meets the pianist Stefan Askenase and his wife, and she credits the latter for having made her play again and perform in public once more. She goes on to become one of the most acclaimed international piano stars.
  • 1980: Resigns from the jury of the Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw in protest at its failure to give Ivo Pogorelich a place in the finals.
  • 1992: Diapason d’Or.
  • 1993: Edison Award.
  • 1995: The last two of her complete Beethoven Violin Sonata recordings with Gidon Kremer are released.
  • 1999: First Martha Argerich Piano Competition in Buenos Aires.
  • 2001: German Record Critics’ Award.
  • 2004: Grammy for “Best Chamber Music Performance”.
  • 2005: Grammy for “Best Instrumental Soloist Performance (with Orchestra)”.
  • 2007: The Ruhr Piano Festival (Essen, Germany) awards her a lifetime achievement prize.
Upper right picture : Chopin International Piano Competition. Central picture : Georges Gachot, Conversation Nocturne.