Horacio Gutiérrez, piano

Horacio Gutiérrez

Horacio Gutiérrez was born in Havana, Cuba in 1948. His mother was his first piano teacher, and was herself an accomplished pianist. His first formal teacher was César Pérez Sentenat. Gutiérrez began performing before audiences at four years of age, and at 11, performed as soloist with the Havana Symphony playing Haydn's D major concerto. When Fidel Castro gained control of Cuba in 1959, the family decided to leave the country together rather than send Gutiérrez abroad alone at a young age.

He moved with his family to the United States in 1961, at the age of 13, and studied in Los Angeles with Sergei Tarnowsky, Vladimir Horowitz's first teacher in Kiev, and later at the Juilliard School under Adele Marcus, a pupil of Russian pianist Josef Lhévinne. He later worked extensively with American pianist William Masselos, a pupil of Carl Friedberg, who himself had studied with Clara Schumann and Johannes Brahms.

He was first seen on American television in 1966, on one of the Young People's Concerts with Leonard Bernstein, playing "The Great Gate of Kiev" from Pictures at an Exhibition, by Modest Mussorgsky.[2]

On August 23, 1970, Gutiérrez made his debut with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and Zubin Mehta conducting Rachmaninoff's 3rd Piano Concerto. Martin Bernheimer, music critic with the Los Angeles Times, described his first appearance with the orchestra as "spectacular."

Gutiérrez won an Emmy Award for his fourth appearance with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. He has recorded for EMI, Telarc, and Chandos Records.

He currently lives and works in the United States. He was M.D. Anderson Distinguished Professor of Music at the University of Houston from 1996-2003. He is currently teaching at Manhattan School of Music.