Internationally acclaimed pianist YUNDI was propelled onto the international stage when he won first prize at the XIV Chopin International Piano Competition at the age of 18, becoming the youngest and first Chinese winner in the history of the prestigious competition. Since then, he has been regarded as a leading exponent of Chopin’s music. In recognition of his contribution to Polish culture, the Government of Poland presented a Gold Medal for Merit to Culture ‘Gloria Artis’ to YUNDI in 2010.
On his regular recital tours, YUNDI has performed in such venues as Carnegie Hall (New York), Royal Festival Hall (London), Musikverein Vienna, Alte Oper Frankfurt, Herkulessaal (Munich), Konzerthaus Berlin, Gewandhaus zu Leipzig, Salle Pleyel (Paris), Mariinsky Concert Hall (St Petersburg), National Centre for Performing Arts (Beijing), Seoul Arts Centre and Suntory Hall (Tokyo). Orchestras and conductors with whom he has collaborated include the Leipzig Gewandhausorchester and Riccardo Chailly, Mahler Chamber Orchestra and Daniel Harding, Rotterdam Philharmonic and Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Philharmonia Orchestra and Andrew Davis, Mariinsky Orchestra and Valery Gergiev, and the Israel Philharmonic and Gustavo Dudamel. He has also performed with the Vienna Philharmonic, National Symphony (Washington), Philadelphia, Toronto Symphony and NHK Symphony Orchestras.
In addition to his activities on the concert platform, YUNDI is passionate about humanitarian work, which includes acting as an ambassador of the Red Cross Society of China and for his hometown of Chongqing. Equally committed to promoting classical music in an educational context, YUNDI is one of the pioneers of music education in China where his success story has played a crucial role in millions of children learning the piano. He has also given masterclasses at the Royal College of Music, University of Cambridge and Qinghua University in Beijing.
YUNDI first signed to Deutsche Grammophon in 2002, releasing six internationally acclaimed recordings on the label until 2008. In 2007, he became the first Chinese pianist to record live alongside the Berliner Philharmoniker and Seiji Ozawa with their interpretations of piano concertos by Ravel and Prokofiev – a disc met with rave reviews and named ‘Editor’s Choice’ by Gramophone magazine. YUNDI’s next album, a recording of three of Beethoven’s piano sonatas, will be released on Deutsche Grammophon and Mercury Classics in the 2012/13 season.
YUNDI began piano studies at age seven. He subsequently trained at the Shenzhen Arts School and Hochschule für Musik und Theater Hannover.