Celebrated worldwide as “one of the Grandes Dames of piano playing” (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung), the Canadian pianist Janina Fialkowska celebrates her 70th birthday today.
Arthur Rubinstein’s last pupil – from 1974 until his death in 1092 – and “artistic heir” received her first piano lessons at the age of four and studied with Alfred Cortot students in Montreal and Paris as well as at the Juilliard School in New York with a Rachmaninov protégé of the Russian school of Anton Rubinstein. Since her 1975 concert debut in Tel Aviv under Zubin Mehta and the Israel Philharmonic, Janina has mesmerised audiences from London to Los Angels, from Toronto to Tokyo.
As one of today’s leading Chopin interpreters, Janina has performed in concerts around the globe with the most renowned conductors including Sir Georg Solti, Bernard Haitink, Lorin Maazel, Zubin Mehta, Sir Roger Norrington and Yannick Nézet-Séguin. She has been hailed as “perfect pianistic craftsmanship” by Joachim Kaiser, Germany’s foremost music critic and bestowed the title “Officer of the Order of Canada” by Queen Elizabeth II as a “national cultural treasure” (CBC).
Janina’s numerous CD recordings have won prestigious international awards, including the BBC Music Magazine Award for Chopin’s Piano works. She further holds three honorary doctorates from major universities in Canada and is the recipient of the highest Canadian award given to artists, the “Governor General’s Award” for lifetime achievement.
In 2002, a malignant tumour in her left shoulder threatened the precious artist’s life. Fortunately, a revolutionary operation in New York (performed only once prior in Switzerland) saved not only her life but also her return to the international concert stage.
During the artistic standstill caused by the Corona pandemic, Janina has been working at her home in southern Germany on the final details for the publication of her autobiography – “A Note in Time”. The first autobiography will be published by Novum Publishing in London on September 30th this year.
Janina will also discuss her fateful encounters with the great piano legend Arthur Rubinstein through Arte TV’s’ new documentary featuring his life later this year (TBA).