Ekaterina Mechetina (piano) , Russia
Today Ekaterina Mechetina is one of the most talented and brightest young pianists of the world level. She plays with the best Russian and European orchestras. Ekaterina has had a happy chance to work with the greatest contemporary musicians. Rodion Shchedrin, having heard Ekaterina just once, entrusted her with the world premiere of his Sixth Piano Concerto. Ms. Mechetina's performances are invariably successful. The audience admires not just the young pianist's virtuosity but her wonderful charm, too.
Ekaterina was born into a family of Moscow musicians and began her music studies at the age of four. She graduated from the world-renowned Central Musical School under the Moscow Conservatory (the class of T.L. Koloss) and then from the Moscow Conservatory (the class of associate professor V.P. Ovchinnikov). In 2004, she completed a post-graduation course in the Conservatory in the class of an outstanding musician and teacher, who has brought up more than a hundred of laureates, the world-renowned Professor Sergey L. Dorensky.
She started appearing on the stage from the age of five. The young pianist gave her first recital in the hall of the Central Musical School when she was ten. In mere two years, she visited Japan for a concert tour during which she gave 15 recitals with two different programs within a month, and such tours continued for ten consecutive years. Since then, she performed in more than 30 countries worldwide, on all of the continents except Australia. Now Ekaterina gives around 70 concerts annually.
Ekaterina Mechetina has appeared in the world's most famous venues, such as the Great, Small and Rakhmaninov Halls of the Moscow Conservatory, the Great and Chamber Halls of the Moscow House of Music, P.I. Tchaikovsky Concert Hall, Bolshoi Theater; Concertgebouw (Amsterdam), Yamaha Hall and Casals Hall (Tokyo), Schauspielhaus (Berlin), Theatre des Champs-Elysees and Salle Gaveau (Paris), the Great Hall of the Milan Conservatory and Auditorium (Milan), Sala Patricia Meireles (Rio de Janeiro), Alice Tully Hall (New York), etc.
Ekaterina has been very successful in competitions. At 10 she won the Grand Prix at the Mozart Prize Competition in Verona and at 13 - the Second Prize at the 1st Youth Chopin Piano Competition in Moscow, where she was also awarded with an unusual, special prize "For Artistry and Charm". At the age of 16 Ms. Mechetina became the youngest laureate of the International Busoni Piano Completion in Bolzano and, in addition to the laureate's status, she received an award for the performance of the most difficult etude by F. Liszt «Feux Follets». These were followed by other wins: in Epinal (2nd Prize, 1999), at the Viotti Competition in Vercelli (2nd Prize, 2002), in Pinerolo (Absolute Winner, 2003), and in Cincinnati at the World Piano Competition (1st Prize and Gold Medal, 2004).
The three outstanding musicians have played a major role in Ekaterina's career: the violinist and conductor Vladimir Spivakov who constantly invites her to perform in his concerts (she at different times appeared with the Virtuosi of Moscow, National Philharmonic of Russia and Russian National Orchestra when conducted by V. Spivakov); the cellist and conductor Mstislav Rostropovich; and the composer Rodion Shchedrin. Mr. Shchedrin's new pieces were presented by Ekaterina in Moscow and Amsterdam.
The pianist's wide repertoire comprises over forty-five concertos for piano and orchestra of which the majority were performed under direction of V. Spivakov, M. Rostropovich, S. Sondeckis, Yu. Simonov, P. Kogan, D. Sitkovetsky, A. Sladkovsky, A. Skulsky and many other outstanding conductors.
Ekaterina took part in major international festivals, including the world-renowned festival Sviatoslav Richter December Evenings in Moscow, Dubrovnik Festival (Croatia), and Crescendo Festival in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, Pskov, Tyumen, Paris, and Riga.
Ekaterina has made recordings on radio and TV of Russia, U.S.A., Italy, Japan, Brazil and Kuwait. In 2005, she recorded her first solo CD of Rakhmaninov's pieces for the Belgian Fuga Libera label.
In addition to recitals, Ekaterina often plays chamber music with ensembles of different membership. She constantly works together with the brightest young performers of Russia - N. Borisoglebsky, S. Antonov, B. Andrianov, A. Ogrinchuk, et al.
In 2003, Ekaterina Mechetina received a prestigious youth price "Triumph". From 2009, she has been teaching in the Moscow State Conservatory (as an assistant to Professor A.A. Mndoyants)