Biography

Philippe Gaspoz is a Swiss pianist. Performing a wide-ranging repertoire in his concerts, he is as much at home with a Prelude and Fugue by Bach as he is with a piece by Heinz Holliger. Beside his appearances as soloist, he is an avid chamber-musician and sought-after colloborative pianist. Moreover, he is passionate about finding ways to make concerts accessible to a broader audience and looking for societal relevance in the formats he creates.

Philippe Gaspoz was born in 1996 in Switzerland. He started playing the piano at an early age yet only decided to pursue music as a profession in his teenage years. Being inspired by his newly-discovered love for romantic pianisism and the lessons with his piano teacher Bettina Sutter, he quickly went on to win first prizes in national and cantonal youth competitions. During this time, he had the opportunity to work with internationally renowned pedagogues like Christopher Elton, Tessa Nicholson or Werner Bärtschi. Furthermore, he worked with Karl-Andreas Kolly during his prestudies at the Konservatorium Winterthur. In 2015, he started his Bachelor at the University of the Arts in Bern in the class of Tomasz Herbut where he graduated "suma cum laude" in 2018. Following this, he went on to complete the Master in Performance, the so-called "Concert Diploma". After an exchange semester with Aleksandar Madžar at the Koninklijk Conservatorium Brussel he graduated in 2022 again with "suma cum laude". His Master-Recital "Dix Regards sur Liszt" was nominated for the "Ober-Gerwern Master Prize" which is awarded every year to the University's best master diploma.

Philippe Gaspoz is a very versatile musican, engaging in numerous different musical activites. His performances are informed by the research he studies or conducts himself. For his interpretation of Liszt's Dante Sonata, for instance, he draws inspiration from a detailed analysis he did of a piano roll recording by Josef Weiss, a pupil of Liszt. His education in playing the cembalo and fortepiano furthermore enhances his ability to make well-founded interpretational choices.

Beside his fondness of traditional piano repertoire, he is invested in including music by contemporary composers into his programs. In 2019 he played the piano of part of "In vain" by Georg Friedrich Haas in a project conducted by Peter Rundel and performed "Romancendres" by Heinz Holliger several times, after having the privilege of working on the piece with the composer himself. With his Duo-Partner Alexander Smith, he has recorded "Kontakte" by Stockhausen. He has taken part in numerous academies specialised in contemporary music and has received guidance from pianists like Wilhelm Latchoumia, Stefan Wirth and Antoine Françoise.

Another pursuit of his is the conception of concert formats that are related to today's world, its contemporary challenges and social changes. He strongly believes that one of art's core attributes is it's ability to create a space for reflection, questioning and meeting and that classical music can play a decisive role in this matter. His latest project, "RomancENDreS", based on the composition by Holliger and other compositions by Liszt and Schumann, is an example of this. The format explores the connection between mental health and classical music with the help of testimonials by people who have experienced instances of mental health issues in their life. The result is an intimate experience where the audience is free to move around, sit or lay as close to (or as far away from) the musicians as they please and listen to the sounds and words around them. These activites have led to a fruitful collaboration with the Swiss Foundation Pro Mente Sana, for which he has produced a 90-minute movie, displaying a conversational concert around the question of mental illness in classical music.

 

​Philippe Gaspoz has won several first prizes in cantonal and national youth competitions, a second prize in the Lukas Emch competition and was a finalist of the "Concours d'interprétation musicale Lausanne". He has played in concerts as soloist and chamber musician in countries such as the USA, England, Germany, Italy etc. He has also been invited to perform in festivals like the Arosa Musik Festival, Klavierissimo Wetzikon, Kammermusikfestival Bodensee or Culturescapes in halls such as Zentrum Paul Klee in Bern or Salle Paderewski in Lausanne. His performance of  Schubert's A-Major Sonata D. 644 and Liszt's Transcendental Etude no. 8 "Wilde Jagd" was broadcasted live on RTS Espace 2 in the program "Tribune des jeunes musiciens". He is beneficiary of scholarships of the Friedl Wald and the Lukas Emch foundations and is a member of the Swiss Study foundation.