Pianist Alexander Korsantia

The Georgian pianist, Alexander Korsantia, began music studies at the age of five with his mother, Sventlana Korsantia, a professor of piano at the Tbilisi State Conservatory. Recognized as a child prodigy, he won First Prize at the Trans-Caucasian Music Competition in Armenia at the age of 16. Among his mentors are his mother and Tengiz Amiredjibi, Georgia's foremost piano instructor. He received Performance Diploma, Postgraduate Diploma from Georgian State Conservatory. In 1988 he took First Prize at the International Piano Competition in Sydney, Australia, where he was also awarded two special concerto prizes. This outstanding performance led to many concert engagements in Europe and the Far East. In 1993 he made an extensive tour of Japan performing recitals and as a soloist with the St. Petersburg Orchestra “Classica” and the Kirov Orchestra conducted by Valery Gergiev. In 1992 Alexander Korsantia, with his family, came to the USA and joined the famed piano studio of fellow Georgian, Alexander Toradze, at Indiana University in South Bend (receiving M.M.). Subsequently, he won First Prize at the 1994 Palm Beach International Invitational Piano Competition, and in 1995, First Prize - Gold Medal and the “Audience Favorite” Prize at Arthur Rubinstein International Piano Master Competition in Tel-Aviv.

A veritable superstar in his country of birth, Alexander Korsantia was awarded in 1999 one of the most prestigious national awards, the Medal of Honor, bestowed on him by then-President, Eduard Shevardnadze. In January 2003, Georgian National TV released a full-length documentary about him and in February 2004 he performed at the inauguration of President Saakashvili. In March 1999 Alexander Korsantia established a new concert series at the Performing Arts Center in Tel Aviv called “Korsantia and Friends” which has become popular with the media, musicians and general public.

Alexander Korsantia has gained audience and critical acclaim for his versatility, power, and the unique sincerity of his playing. He has performed as soloist with orchestras throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia. Today he can be heard on the stages of the world’s major concert halls that include Avery Fisher and Carnegie Halls in New York, Orchestra Hall and Ravinia Pavillion in Chicago, Herculeszaal in Munich, Schauspielhaus in Berlin, Gewandhaus in Leipzig, Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Metropolitan Hall in Tokyo, Mann Auditorium in Tel-Aviv, Rudolphinum in Budapest, and Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg, Russia. He has collaborated with such eminent conductors and renowned artists as Valery Gergiev, Christoph EschenbachPaavo Järvi, Zdenec Macal, Gianandrea Noseda, Yuri Bashmet, Yuri Temirkanov, Vadim Repin (violin), the Jerusalem Quartet and Sakari Oramo, among others; and orchestras as the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Kirov Orchestra and Israel Philharmonic Orchestra.

Highlights of the 2005-2007 seasons were performances of Prokofiev's Third Concerto and W.A. Mozart's B flat major Concerto with Israel Philharmonic Orchestra and with Boston Pro Arte Orchestra, S. Rachmaninov's Piano Concerto No. 3 with RAI Orchestra, Turin, Dvorak Concerto with Jerusalem Symphony and Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra and Igor Stravinsky's Concerto with UK Youth Orchestra as well as Israel Chamber OrchestraVancouver Symphony Orchestra, Omaha Symphony, Oregon Symphony, Pacific Symphony Orchestra in LA, Elgin Symphony in Chicago, Louisville Symphony Orchestras giving performances in such a concert halls as Verdi Auditorium in Milan and Santa Cecilia Auditorium in Rome. As a very important part of his schedule, Alexander Korsantia appears frequently in his homeland of Georgia in concerts, on television and radio.

Season 2007-2008 brought Alexander Korsantia’s debut with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and S. Rachmaninov's Piano Concerto No. 2, and performances with the Omaha, Elgin and Pacific Symphonies. These concerts followed a stint with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra under Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos the previous summer, where he performed L.v. Beethoven’s Emperor Concerto and Johannes BrahmsPiano Concerto No. 2 nine times. In Europe he was heard on tour with the Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse, performing Frédéric Chopin’s Piano Concerto No. 2 in France and Germany, as well as with the Noeburg Chamber Orchestra across Germany. He also gave recitals at the Festival Piano Jacobins in Toulouse, and in Calgary, Lodz, and his hometown, Tbilisi, Georgia.

The highlights of recent seasons were performances of Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3 and W.A. Mozart's B flat major Concerto with the Israel Philharmonic OrchestraS. Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 3 with RAI Orchestra in Turin, the Dvorak Concerto with the Jerusalem Symphony and Oslo Philharmonic and the I. Stravinsky Concerto with the Israel Chamber Orchestra, Vancouver, Omaha, Oregon, Louisville Symphony Orchestras and a tour throughout Italy with the Georgian State Symphony. Other noteworthy engagements have included a televised performance of S. Rachmaninov's Piano Concerto No. 3 at the White Nights Festival in St. Petersburg; performances at the Stresa Festival in Italy under the baton of Yuri Bashmet; concerts at the Newport, Tanglewood, Vancouver, Gilmore festivals; with the symphony orchestras of Louisville, Brazil, Bogota, Jerusalem and the City of Birmingham, Georgian State Orchestra, Kirov Orchestra, Israel Chamber Orchestra and others. He has also participated in a USA recital tour with renowned violinist Vadim Repin.

This season (2008-2009) Alexander Korsantia returns to Israel for the concerts with Israel Philharmonic Orchestra and Rafael de Burgos to perform Second Concerto by J. Brahms and L.v. Beethoven's "Emperor" and with Israel Chamber Orchestra for L.v. Beethoven's 4th Piano Concerto and E flat Major Concerto, which L.v. Beethoven wrote when he was 14 years old. He is also appearing in concerts with Quebec City Symphony Orchestra, Georgian State Orchestra, Moscow Symphony Orchestra, St. Petersburg Philharmonic with Temirkanov, Kirov Orchestra with Gianandrea Noseda, recitals and chamber music concerts at the Barge Festival, New York, Boston, Tel-Aviv, Glasgow, Calgary, Toulouse and Noeburg and Nice among others.

Future activities include engagements with the Jerusalem Symphony, Louisville Symphony Orchestra, Stresa Festival, Gilmore Festival in Michigan, and a Carnegie Hall recital. He is also recording for the Audiophon label, and USA. Recordings of W.A. Mozart and Dmitri Shostakovich concertos with the Israel Camerata Orchestra Jerusalem were released in Spring of 2002.

Alexander Korsantia has been a Guest Professor of Piano at Jerusalem’s Rubin Academy of Music and Dance. Before his appointment to the UBC School of Music in 2001 he held the position of Assistant Professor at Indiana University South Bend, Indiana. He was also on the faculty of the University of British Columbia. Recently he joined the faculty of the New England Conservatory in Boston (where he now resides) as is a professor of piano.