Russian pianist Ilya Yakushev, with many awards and honors to his credit, continues to astound and mesmerize audiences at major venues on three continents. He made his San Francisco Symphony debut in 2007 with Music Director Michael Tilson Thomas, performing Prokofiev's First and Fourth Piano Concertos as part of the Symphony's "Prokofiev Festival". His performances were included in the top ten classical music events of the year by the San Francisco Chronicle, and prompted a return to the Symphony in September 2009 with Maestro Tilson Thomas performing Prokofiev's 3rd Piano Concerto.
The highlights of Yakushev's 2012-13 season included return appearances with the Boston Pops and Brevard Sinfonia under Keith Lockhart. He also performed with the El Paso Symphony and Arthur Post, Columbus Symphony and George Del Gobbo, Ensemble 212 and Yoon Jae Lee, Las Cruces Symphony and Lonnie Klein, and St. Petersburg Philharmonic and Emmanuel Leducq-Barome.
In the 2012-13 season, Mr. Yakushev appeared as recitalist in a 15-city tour around the Midwest. He also made return appearances at the Maverick Concerts in Woodstock, NY and the International Keyboard Institute & Festival in the summer 2013.
In October 2010, Mr. Yakushev released two CDs on IY-Records label - "Prokofiev by Yakushev" and "Bach Partitas No. 1, 2, & 3". American Record Guide wrote "Yakushev is one of the very best young pianists before the public today, and it doesn't seem to matter what repertoire he plays - it is all of the highest caliber".
In past seasons, he has performed in various prestigious venues worldwide, including Glinka Philharmonic Hall (St. Petersburg), Victoria Hall (Singapore), Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall (New York), Davies Symphony Hall (San Francisco), and Sejong Performing Arts Center (Seoul, Korea). His performances with orchestra include those with the Mariinsky Orchestra, BBC Concert Orchestra, Utah Symphony, Syracuse Symphony, Rochester Philharmonic, Arkansas Symphony, and others.
Winner of the 2005 World Piano Competition which took place in Cincinnati, OH, Mr. Yakushev received his first award at age 12 as a prizewinner of the Young Artists Concerto Competition in his native St. Petersburg. In 1997, he received the Mayor of St. Petersburg's Young Talents award, and in both 1997 and 1998, he won First Prize at the Donostia Hiria International Piano Competition in San Sebastian, Spain. In 1998, he received a national honor, The Award for Excellence in Performance, presented to him by the Minister of Culture of the Russian Federation in Moscow. Most recently, Mr. Yakushev became a recipient of the prestigious Gawon International Music Society's Award in Seoul, Korea.
Mr. Yakushev attended the Rimsky-Korsakov College of Music in his native St. Petersburg, Russia, and subsequently came to New York City to attend Mannes College of Music where he studied with legendary pianist Vladimir Feltsman.
Since 2002, Mr. Yakushev has served as Executive Director of the International Keyboard Institute and Festival at the Mannes College in New York City.