"A restless, inquiring mind"
International Piano [UK]
Pianist Ivan Ilić earned degrees in mathematics and music at the University of California Berkeley before moving to Paris on a university fellowship. He then studied at the Conservatoire Supérieur de Paris, where he took a Premier Prix. The City of Paris sponsored his first recording.
Early career highlights included recitals at Carnegie Hall, Wigmore Hall, Ireland's National Concert Hall, Toronto's Glenn Gould Studio, and the American Academy in Rome. He recently gave recital débuts in Vienna, Sao Paulo and Geneva.
Ivan's recordings have played a significant role in spreading his international reputation. His CD of 24 Préludes by Claude Debussy  received Mezzo Television's Critic's Choice Award in France, and was a Top Five CD of the Year of Fanfare Magazine. It was also selected by Classique News in France as a Top 5 CD of the Month. The album was broadcast on Radio France, BBC Radio 3, Dutch Radio 4, American Public Radio, Radio Hong Kong, and numerous other stations.
His next CD  featured the complete Chopin Studies for the left hand by Leopold Godowsky, a tour-de-force of musicianship and virtuosity. The recording was described as "a major achievement" and "breathtaking" by BBC Radio 3. It featured prominently in The Daily Telegraph [CD of the Week], German MDR Figaro [Top 5 CD], Classique News [Top 5 CD], and Czech Radio [5 stars]. The album was broadcast widely across 6 continents. Videos of Ivan performing Godowsky on YouTube attracted over 500,000 views. Shortly afterwards, Ivan made his acting début in two French short films: Luc Plissonneau's Les Mains and Benoît Maire's Le Berger.
From left hand repertoire, Ivan shifted his focus to US composer Morton Feldman, which led to a trilogy of publications. The first was the CD The Transcendentalist . The programme suggested a connection between Scriabin miniatures and late Feldman, with detours in early John Cage and a Feldmanesque new work by Scott Wollschleger. It was the Critic's Choice of BR Klassik [DE], Swiss Radio Espace 2 [CH], Listen Magazine [US], and Classique News [FR]. It was also a CD of the month of Sinfini Music [UK] and TGV Magazine [FR], won a Supersonic Award from Pizzicato Magazine, and garnered 5-star reviews from Harmonie Magazine [CZ] and Aachener Zeitung [DE]. In November 2014 the album was nominated by the International Classical Music Awards for "Album of the Year". Forbes mentioned it in their 2014 list of Top 10 New Classical Releases.
Part 2 of the Feldman Trilogy was an unconventional art book/CD/DVD, published by the Geneva University of Art & Design . French magazine Le Nouvel Obs hailed the "sublime immobility" of Ivan's recording, and La Tribune de Genève wrote: "Under Ivan Ilić's fingers, Feldman reappears, ethereal and moving. This is a noble tribute which must be recognized". Part 3 of the Feldman Trilogy was Ivan's recording of "For Bunita Marcus" .
In recent years Ivan Ilić's approach has broadened in scope. He has co-produced several 5-hour radio series for Swiss Radio Espace 2. He also writes about music: recent articles have appeared on the websites of Gramophone, BBC Music Magazine, Music & Literature and Limelight.
Information about ordering Ivan's CDs here
###Watch Ivan's newest video, of a Haydn Symphony transcription:
###Ivan's next CD  will be dedicated to Czech composer Antoine Reicha.
Below, Ivan premieres Reicha's Capriccio, filmed in London in 2015:
###Read an article in the June 2016 issue of German Fono Forum about Ivan's involvement in the rediscovery of Haydn Symphony transcriptions by Karl David Stegmann [Deutsch] - [English]. Christoph Vratz's photo from the interview is here. Also: listen to an interview with German radio WDR 3 recorded in Cologne about the Hadyn/Stegmann transcriptions [link]. Listen to Ivan perform the slow movement of Haydn Symphony no 44 live on BBC Radio 3 [link]. Read a review of the sold-out premiere in Berlin, published by Klassik Heute [link] and Pizzicato [link].
###Ivan also recently performed Reicha live at Radio France:
###In January 2016 Ivan co-produced a 5-hour radio series about Antoine Reicha for Radio Suisse - Espace 2. You can listen to the entire series, Antoine Reicha, le novateur via the links below:
[Episode #1] - [Episode #2] - [Episode #3] - [Episode #4] - [Episode #5]
###Ivan's recording of For Bunita Marcus  was released on 16 October 2015.
###Watch the CD trailer below:
###Feldman CD reviews: Gramophone [link] - BBC Music Magazine [link] - The Independent [link] - Diapason [link] - BBC Radio 3 Record Review - [link] - The Sunday Times [link] - Tribune de Genève [link] - The Washington Post [link] - Fono Forum [link] - Classiquenews [link] - Limelight Magazine [link] - Pizzicato [link] - Piano News [link] - The Whole Note [link] - Audiophile Audition [link] - L'Est Républicain [link] - Facts & Arts [link] - Opus Klassiek [link] - Cross-Eyed Pianist [link] - L'Obs [link] - Sylviane Falcinelli [link] - Classical Ear [link] - Klassik Heute [link] - Artistxite [link] - Planet Hugill [link] - The Guardian [link] - Sinfini Music [link] - Rete Toscana Classica [link] - International Piano [link] - American Record Guide [link] - The Arts Desk [link] - Westzeit [link] - Classica [link] - Concertonet [link]
###Read a summary of Feldman reviews [link]
##Feldman-related interviews: Andante [link] - Pizzicato [link] - Swiss Radio RTS Espace 2 [link] - Classique Mais Pas Has Been [link] - read Ivan's translation of a Feldman interview in Music & Literature [link] - Ivan's expanded Feldman CD liner notes essay published on Music & Literature [link] + two articles Ivan wrote for Morton Feldman's 90th birthday on 12 January: BBC Music Magazine [link] - Slipped Disc [link]
###Part two of Ivan's Morton Feldman Trilogy - the art book Detours Which Have To Be Investigated - was published in November 2014.
Detours Which Have To Be Investigated is an art book/CD/DVD, an homage to composer Morton Feldman. It is the result of a collaboration between Ivan Ilić, visual artist Benoît Maire, AMI graphic design, and the HEAD - Geneva University of Art & Design. The book includes texts and photos, including a never-before published photo of John Cage. The DVD comprises three videos which aim to make Feldman's music accessible to a wider audience. The CD is Ivan Ilić's recording of Feldman's final solo piano work, "Palais de Mari" (1986). Ivan Ilić gave the launch concert at MAMCO, Geneva's Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, on 12 November 2014.
###Order the art book/CD/DVD at Mollat.com [link]. Alternatively, you can order it via this website. For more information click here.
###Press related to the art book Detours: a portrait of Ivan in La Tribune de Genève [link] - [English]- an article Ivan recently wrote for Gramophone [link] - Classiquenews [link] - Facts & Arts [link] - Musikzen [link] - Swiss Radio [link] - Classique mais pas has been [link]- L'Obs [link] - interview with Classique News [French] - [English] - a portrait in International Piano [link] - a review in Limelight [link] - a portrait in Swiss newspaper Le Courrier [link] [English] - a live performance on BBC Radio 3's "In Tune" [link] - in-depth interview on The Cross-Eyed Pianist [link] - an interview on Radio Hong Kong RTHK [link] - a concert recorded live for RTHK [link]
###Recent broadcasts across 5 continents include German Westdeutscher Rundfunk WDR, Australian ABC Classic FM, Estonian Klassikaraadio, Irish RTÉ Lyric FM, American WFMT Chicago, American Minnesota Public Radio MPR, British BBC Radio 3, South African Classic FM, Swiss Espace 2, Italian Rete Toscana Classica, and Radio 4 Hong Kong.
###Ivan recorded five one-hour episodes of Musique en mémoire for Swiss Radio RTS - Espace 2 about the New York School of Music, originally broadcast in October 2014.
[1. The Principal Characters]
[2. Cage and Feldman]
[3. The Influence of Transcendentalism]
[4. Music and the Visual Arts]
[5. Three Accessible Masterpieces of the New York School]
###Ivan's CD - The Transcendentalist - was released in 2014.
The Transcendentalist is an exploration of meditative music. It traces a mood from miniatures of Alexander Scriabin to John Cage and Morton Feldman, to a new work by a young American composer: Scott Wollschleger.
John Cage once said: "I would like every man to fix their attention on themselves";
The Transcendentalist encourages this introspection. Through the patient, refined playing of
Ivan Ilić, we have access to a contemplative world of inner calm.
Click here to learn more about The Transcendentalist, and to peruse CD-related press.
For a selection of CD reviews please click here.
###The Godowsky CD was released in 2012. For order information click here.
Click here to learn more about the Godowsky CD, and to peruse Godowsky-related press.
For a selection of Godowsky CD reviews please click here.
###Ivan co-produced an extensive 5-hour radio series about repertoire for the left hand, for Radio Suisse - Espace 2. You can listen to the entire series, "Maladroite la main gauche?" via the links below:
[1. The virtuosic left hand]
[2. Leopold Godowsky: the Paganini of the piano]
[3. Paul Wittgenstein, the one-armed pianist]
[4. Ravel, Prokofiev, Strauss, and Britten... Concertos for a one-armed pianist]
[5. A compendium of solo works for the left hand]
###The short film Les Mains by Luc Plissonneau is now available below. Ivan plays the lead role of Izak in a love story about an introverted pianist and Lucie, his student muse.
Brahms Intermezzo in E Major
Recorded with the generous support of the City of Paris
Visit the audio archive here._______________________________________________________
"Ivan Ilić succeeds in transforming the acrobatics to
open jubilation and aesthetic ecstasy."
Top 5 CD of the Month
Classique News, France [link]
"Ivan Ilić deserves a medal for his purposeful, intelligent grasp of this taxing music."
International Record Review, UK [pdf]
"Ivan Ilić achieves a very musical performance, and technically impressive, especially articulation-wise. If his goal was to generate the radiant chopinite spectre of voices and colours with five fingers according to Godowsky's arrangement, he succeeds utterly."
Harmonie Magazine, Czech Republic [pdf]
"His playing is brilliant and luminous. A fine, impressive recording by an outstanding pianist."
Piano News, Germany [link]
"The legato and polish of his playing are exemplary."
Fono Forum, Germany [link]
"Looking at the score will make you dizzy. But Ilić's interpretation is pure poetry."
Vltava maximum (5* rating)
Czech Radio 3 - Vltava, Czech Republic [link]
"Ivan Ilić masters these touchstones seemingly effortlessly!"
Top 5 CD of the Week
MDR Figaro, Germany [link]
"A virile touch and well-controlled passion."
"His musical intelligence runs deep...this was virtuosity of the mind as much as of digital dexterity."
Irish Times, Ireland. [link]
"He is a magisterial technician, with a formidable brain and a far-reaching sensibility that reaches far further than the immediacy of his sleeve or his heartbeat."
Classical Source, UK. [link]
"The program was an adventure in learning as well as a brilliant display of technical prowess, all free of clichés."
San Francisco Classical Voice, USA. [link]
"Ivan Ilić takes on Claude Debussy’s Préludes in an entirely original and fascinating way."
Oberösterreichische Nachrichten, Austria. [link]
"Ivan Ilić, an American based in Paris, has a deftness of touch that allows him control over both Debussy’s exuberant climaxes and his quiet, subtle moments."
Mail & Guardian, South Africa. [link]
"His playing is characterised by clarity, vivacity and his intuitive feel for systems in the music...one to watch."
Le Monde de la Musique, France.
"Ivan Ilić’s approach is intimate and poetic without being over-indulgent; this is spirited and carefully distilled playing."
International Record Review, UK.
For a selection of CD reviews from 2012 please click here.
For a substantial selection of reviews from 2006-2009 please click here.
For engagements in Germany/Austria please contact:
Tel: +43 (1) 956 98 25
Mobile: +43 (0) 676 964 2800