Biography

Oliver Schnyder was born on October 3, 1973 in Brugg (Switzerland). He studied with Emmy Henz- Diémand in Aarau as well as in Homero Francesch’s masterclass in Zurich. After his solo exams he continued with Ruth Laredo in New York, before completing his studies with Leon Fleisher in Baltimore between 1998 and 2001.

On his return to Europe his career went from strength to strength. In 2002 he was invited to the Orpheum Young Soloists on Stage, where his debut with the Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra under David Zinman was received with unanimous praise by public and press. This marked the beginning of a development which would take him to the most important world concert halls and music festivals. The international media have dubbed Oliver Schnyder a “piano poet” and like to compare his aesthetic approach with that of great pianists such as Kempff, Schnabel, Fischer, Barenboim, Perahia or Brendel. Oliver Schnyder has worked with orchestras such as the Academy of Saint Martin in the Fields (led by his long term chamber music partner Julia Fischer), the Philharmonia London, the Danish National Symphony, Baltimore Symphony, Tchaikovsky Symphony of the Moscow Radio, the WDR Symphony Orchestra of Cologne and most of the major orchestras of his native Switzerland, including the Tonhalle Orchestra, Lucerne Symphony Orchestra, Basle Symphony Orchestra, Zurich Chamber Orchestra, Musikkollegium Winterthur, Saint Gall Symphony, Biel Symphony Orchestra, Argovia Philharmonic, Camerata Berne, Chamber Aartists, under conductors such as John Axelrod, Semyon Bychkov, Vladimir Fedoseyev, James Gaffigan, Howard Griffiths, Philippe Jordan, Sir Roger Norrington, Mario Venzago, Muhai Tang, and David Zinman. In the 2015/ 15 season, Schnyder has been selected the very first “Artiste Etoile” in the history of the Berne Symphony Orchestra, including a UK tour under the baton of Mario Venzago. Oliver appeares in the most important concert venues in Europe, North America and Asia such as Wigmore Hall, Concertgebouw, Kölner Philharmonie, Herkulessaal, Carnegie Hall, Tokyo Opera City Concert Hall, Moscow Great Hall, and at music festivals such as the Lucerne Festival, Menuhin Festival Gstaad, Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Schwetzinger SWR Festspiele. His chamber music collaboration with violinist Andreas Janke and with the cellist Benjamin Nyffenegger led in 2012 to the
founding of the Oliver Schnyder Trio. For RCA Red Seal (Sony) Oliver has recorded piano concertos by Haydn (Academy of Saint Martin in the Fields/Andrew Watkinson)), Mendelssohn (Musikkollegium Winterthur/Douglas Boyd), Mozart (Camerata bern/Erich Höbarth), and piano works by Schumann and Liszt to great critical acclaim (Choc de Classica, Diapason, ICMA, Fono Forum). His numerous radio and television recordings (BBC, SRF, SWR, WDR, BR, NDR) amply demonstrate the high quality of his art. In 2016, Schnyder has been awarded a Werkbeitrag by the Aargauer Kuratorium.

Since 2013, Oliver is the co-founder and artistic director of Piano District, a new piano series in his home town Baden, Switzerland.

RCA and Sony Classical CDs:

2015: Schubert – Winterreisen. Daniel Behle,  Schnyder Trio

2014: Brahms – The Piano Trios. Oliver Schnyder Trio, Andreas Janke, vl, Benjamin Nyffenegger, vc (Musik & Theater: “…in the end, it’s the breathtaking interaction of the ensemble which makes this immaculate and deeply touching renditions a touchstone recording. Sheer joy of Brahms.“)

2013: Mendelssohn: The Piano Concertos /Musikkollegium Winterthur, Douglas Boyd (NDR: “CD of the Week”, NZZ: “Schnyder appears as the ideal interpreter”, Piano News: “This is the Mendelssohn we have been waiting for”)

2013: Schubert, The Piano Trios / Oliver Schnyder Trio (Vienna’s “Die Bühne”: “A new benchmark recording”)

2012: Haydn Piano Concertos / Academy of St Martin in the Fields (Fono Forum: “first class”, CHOC de Classica Award, September 2012, “Cinq Diapasons”, Classic FM “CD of the Week”, Kulturradio Berlin rbb: “CD of the Week”, Vienna’s Radio Stephansdom: “CD of the Day”)

2011: Liszt album / Pèlerinage Suisse, Legends, Malediction for piano and strings / 60 pages deluxe hardcover book & bonus cd – limited edition (International Classical Music Award – Nomination 2013, Fono Forum: “CD Recommendation of the Month”, Gramophone: “Here…are tributes that would surely have brought tears of gratitude from the composer himself on hearing his genius so ardently celebrated and confirmed”)

2010: Schumann Piano Works (Fono Forum: “This CD certainly belongs to the most beautiful contributions to the Schumann anniversary 2010”)

2008: Mozart Piano Concertos / Camerata Bern (Fanfare Magazine: “…excellent technique and impressive treatment of Mozart’s piano writing…The selection of Mozart’s minor- key works – key major works, indeed – to be put on a single disc was a brilliant stroke. Schnyder competes well with the best: Schnabel in the Rondo: Schiff and Barenboim in Sonatas Nos. 8 and 14, and the Fantasia K 475; and Brendel and Schiff in the beautiful K 540 B-Minor Adagio. Schnyder provides an impressive addition to Mozart’s solo piano music.”)

“The shooting star of Swiss pianist” (Tagesschau des Schweizer Fernsehens)

“Schnyder belongs to the best pianists of his generation” (FACTS)

“Aristocratic Musicianship” (Washington Post)

“A Musical Sensation” (Süddeutsche Zeitung)

“Highest Perfection” (FAZ)

 

 

 

Official Site of pianist Oliver Schnyder