Biography

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Cristiana Pegoraro, Pianist

Acclaimed as one of the most gifted musicians of her generation, Italian-born pianist Cristiana Pegoraro has consistently entertained and enlightened audiences with her inspired performances and original programming. Her skills display great technical and interpretative abilities.
She began her career in music as a piano prodigy receiving countless national and international awards, including the 1989 Prague Best of the Year for Classical Music Award “for her great personality, strong musical temperament, mastery of phrasing and expressive artistry.”
The New York Times called her “an artist of the highest caliber” following her stunning 1996 debut at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall.

A gold medal winner at the 2016 Global Music Awards, Ms. Pegoraro has performed in some of the major venues in Europe, United States, South America, Asia and Australia, including Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, the United Nations, the Guggenheim Museum (New York); the Sydney Opera House; Festspielhaus (Salzburg); Musikverein (Vienna); Royal College of Music (London); Auditorium Parco della Musica, Casa del Jazz (Rome); Amici del Loggione del Teatro alla Scala, Serate Musicali (Milan); Centro Cultural de Belem (Lisbon); Theatro Municipal (São Paulo); Theatro Municipal (Rio de Janeiro), the Opera House (Manaus), and music festivals such as: Budapest Spring Festival, Umbria Jazz, Umbria Jazz Winter, Sorrento Jazz Festival, Orestiadi in Gibellina (Sicily), S. Petersburg Festival, Edinburgh Festival, Klavierfestival Ruhr (Germany), Shabyt Festival Astana (Kazakhstan), Aichi World Expo (Japan) and Saragoza World Expo (Spain), among others.

She appears as a soloist with acclaimed orchestras and ensembles such as Salzburger Kammervirtuosen, Hannover Kammerorkester, Boston Youth Symphony Orchestra, Garland Symphony Orchestra TX (USA), Symphony Arlington TX (USA), Las Colinas Symphony Orchestra TX (USA), COS Youth Symphonic Ensemble (USA), Drzhava Philarmonia Shumen (Bulgaria), Georgian National Orchestra, Orquesta Filarmonica di Bogotá, Orquesta Sinfonica de Cuyo (Perù), Orquesta Sinfonica de la Universidad Nacional de Cuyo, Orquesta Sinfonica Pro Lirica (Perù), I musici di Parma, Istituzione Sinfonica di Roma, Orchestra d’archi della Filarmonica di Roma, Orchestra da Camera del Kazakistan, Orchestra da Camera dell’Umbria, Orchestra da Camera Statale dell’Accademia Musicale di Astana (Kazakistan), Orchestra Filarmonica Città di Roma, Orchestra Filarmonica di Civitavecchia, Orchestra Filarmonica di Oradea (Romania), Orchestra Filarmonica di Roma, Orchestra Filarmonica Umbra, Orchestra Filarmonica Veneta, Orchestra del Narnia Festival, Orchestra Nuova Filarmonica di Roma, Ensemble Estro Tanguero, Orchestra Sinfonica Accademia Musicale Pescarese, La Camerata Ducale di Parma, Orchestra Sinfonica Carlo Coccia di Novara, Rome Chamber Ensemble, Orchestra L’Armonica Temperanza.

In December 2006 and November 2007 she toured the Gulf Countries, becoming the first Italian female pianist to perform classical concerts in Bahrain, Yemen and Oman.
Presently, Cristiana Pegoraro is also the first Italian female pianist to perform all 32 Sonatas for piano by Ludwig van Beethoven.

Over the years she has appeared in front of the highest world dignitaries, including the President of Italy, Mr. Carlo Azeglio Ciampi, the President of the General Assembly of the United Nations, the Governor of New York, the Mayor of New York, Her Royal Highness the Grand Duchess Maria Teresa of Luxembourg, the Italian Minister of Economic Development and the President of the Austrian Senate.

In collaboration with Italian Embassies and Cultural Institutes, she is regularly invited by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs to represent Italy and promote Italian music in the world.

Hailed by the critics as “among the best interpreters of Cuban and South American music”, Ms. Pegoraro has premiered to European audiences the works of Latin-American composers such as Astor Piazzolla, Joaquin Nin and Ernesto Lecuona.
She also made her own piano transcriptions of some of their greatest works, including the most famous tangos of Astor Piazzolla, and composed a Fantasy on Cuban dances by Ernesto Lecuona.

Her piano artistry can be heard on 28 compact discs released by Decision Products, Dynamic, Nuova Era, Diva, Eden Editori, Da Vinci Publishing, and ProMu.
Gramophone Magazine heralded her second recording of Ernesto Lecuona’s piano music on Dynamic Records with glowing praise – “Cristiana Pegoraro plays not only with brilliance, but with a most engaging finesse.”
Peter Burwasser of Fanfare Magazine has described her as “a multi-faceted artist who eagerly searches for passion and musical inspiration in her life and her performances.”
Her CD “Astor Piazzolla Tangos”, released in 2016, received the Gold Medal at the prestigious Global Music Awards in two categories: Album and Instrumental. Her 2018 release, “Gioacchino Rossini Overtures – Piano Transcriptions” features the world premiere of some of his most popular overtures transcribed for piano by Pegoraro herself. Her 2019 release, “Fantasia Italiana” features the world premiere of her own arrangements for piano and orchestra of Vivaldi The Four Seasons.

As a composer, she has released five albums of her own original compositions and has had various compositions used in films and documentaries.

She composed the soundtrack to the video “For Whom the Sirens Toll” produced by the United Nations Office of the Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict and presented at the United Nations on September 11th, 2004, in memory of the victims of the terrorist attack.

She is the author of a book of poems called “Ithaka” and a series of children’s books based on Italian operas. Her poems are published in the book “Poeti Umbri Contemporanei” by Il Formichiere and in the 2020 edition of “Il Corniolano”, released on the World Poetry Day declared by UNESCO.

As per today, she received over 40 international awards. Just to mention a few:
– World Peace Award from the Circolo Culturale Italiano of the United Nations “for her effort in advancing peace in the world”.
– Mela d’Oro Premio Bellisario by Fondazione Marisa Bellisario with a live ceremony on RAI1 broadcasted worldwide, and a private visit with the President of the Republic of Italy, Sergio Mattarella.

– Melvin Jones Fellow Award “for dedicated humanitarian services” from the Lions Clubs International Foundation.

– Premio Simpatia, awarded by the Mayor of Rome to performing artists, authors, ambassadors and sports figures who exemplify a commitment to Italy, and conceived in recognition “of individuals who enrich and exalt the essential values of life through their work”. Past recipients include directors Federico Fellini and Franco Zeffirelli, actress Sophia Loren and Mother Theresa.

– 2010 ILICA Woman of the Year by the Italian Language Intercultural Alliance in New York.

She supports various international organizations such as UNICEF, Amnesty International, World Food Programme, Emergency, Lions Clubs International, and Rotary International in their humanitarian efforts.

She has been a featured artist on radio and television, on WQXR New York (USA), RAI, Mediaset, Radio Vaticana, Discoteca di Stato (Italy), BBC (Scotland), ARD (Germany), RTP (Portugal), Nine Network (Australia) and CBC (Japan).
She has been a guest on the Italian TV shows: “Porta a Porta” with Bruno Vespa (RAI 1), “Sottovoce” with Gigi Marzullo (RAI 1), and “Vivere Meglio” with Fabrizio Trecca (Rete 4). Her concerts have been broadcast on RAI 5.

Over the last years, Cristiana has taken up the challenge of composition, releasing five highly acclaimed albums “A Musical Journey”, “Ithaka”, “La mia Umbria”, “Volo di note” and “Piano di volo”.
Her compositions have been used for films and documentaries.
She composed the soundtrack to the video “For Whom The Sirens Toll” produced by the United Nations Office of the Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict and presented at the United Nations on September 11th, 2004, in memory of the victims of the terrorist attack.
She also composed the soundtrack of the short movie “La casa dell’orologio” by Italian director Gianni Torres.
She is the author of a book of poems called “Ithaka” and a series of children’s books based on Italian operas. Her poems are published in the book “Poeti Umbri Contemporanei” by Il Formichiere and in the 2020 edition of “Il Corniolano”, released on the World Poetry Day declared by UNESCO.

Cristiana regularly presents master classes at The Juilliard School in New York and across the U.S., Canada, Europe, The Middle East, Asia and Australia.
During the school year, Cristiana teaches at her private studios in Rome and New York.
In July, she also teaches at the Narnia Festival International Summer Training Program in Narni, Italy.

She is a spokesperson of Umbria’s tourism campaign throughout the world.
Since 2011, she is the President of Narnia Arts Academy (www.narniaartsacademy.com) and Artistic Director of Narnia Festival (www.narniafestival.com). The Academy and Festival were even-time recipients of the President of Italy Gold Medal award for their outstanding programming.

Ms. Pegoraro graduated with highest honors from the Conservatory of Terni, Italy, at the age of sixteen. She continued her studies with Jörg Demus in Vienna and Hans Leygraf at the Mozarteum in Salzburg and the Hochschule der Künste in Berlin. She later studied with Nina Svetlanova at the Manhattan School of Music in New York City.