Acknowledged as one of Britain's finest pianists, Lucy Parham applies her sensitivity and imagination not only to concertos and recitals, but also to portraits in words and music of such composers as Schumann, Chopin, Liszt, Debussy and Rachmaninoff.
Her life-long passion for the music of Schumann inspired the original concept of the words and music evening, Beloved Clara. The CD of Beloved Clara (ASV) was released to critical acclaim. Two further evenings, Liszt - An Odyssey of Love and Nocturne - The Romantic Life of Frédéric Chopin also premiered in the London Piano Series at the Wigmore Hall. These musical portraits have toured the UK and abroad, also making their US debuts in Los Angeles and subsequently broadcast on NPR across the USA. The fourth programme, Rêverie – the life and loves of Claude Debussy was premiered at the Wigmore Hall London Piano Series with Henry Goodman. The CD of Nocturne (Samuel West/Harriet Walter) has just been released on the Deux-Elles label to critical acclaim and the CD of Odyssey of Love (Henry Goodman/Juliet Stevenson) is released this year. Her latest show, Elégie – Rachmaninoff: A Heart In Exile” Iis now touring the UK.
Celebrated actors who have collaborated with Lucy Parham in these composer portraits include Juliet Stevenson, Harriet Walter, Simon Russell Beale, Simon Callow, Roger Allam, Henry Goodman, Dominic West, Emilia Fox, Jane Asher, Jeremy Irons, Joanna David, Alistair McGowan, Patricia Hodge, Niamh Cusack, Rosamund Pike, Rula Lenska, Tim McInnerny, Michael Maloney, Gabrielle Drake, Edward Fox, Lloyd Owen, Robert Glenister, Greg Wise, Samuel West, Alex Jennings, Martin Jarvis, Timothy West, Charles Dance and Miranda Richardson.
Lucy Parham has made numerous recordings including Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue (RPO/EMI Gold), concertos by Ravel, Fauré and Franck (RPO records) and two solo Schumann CDs (ASV). Her CD of Clara and Robert Schumann Concertos (BBC CO/Sanctuary) won the BBC Music Magazine "Critics' Choice of the Year”
Lucy Parham first came to public attention as the Piano Winner of the 1984 BBC Young Musician of the Year. Since her Royal Festival Hall concerto debut at the age of 16, she has played throughout the UK as concerto soloist with most of the major British orchestras and is a frequent recitalist at the Wigmore Hall. She has also toured the USA with the BBC Concert Orchestra on their 50th anniversary, as well as Mexico and Turkey with Royal Philharmonic Orchestra with whom she has now given over 60 performances. Abroad, she has toured with the Russian State Symphony, Sofia Philharmonic, Bergen Philharmonic, Polish National Radio SO and L'Orchestre National de Lille.
Lucy Parham is a regular presenter on BBC Radio 3 and 4. Programmes include Something Understood, CD Review, Proms Plus, Tales from the Stave, The Essay, Music Matters, Building a Library, Composer of the Week, Young Musician of the Year and Saturday Classics. She has broadcast several times on the BBC as the commentator on the Leeds International Piano Competition and has frequently been a judge for the final of Young Musician of the Year. She was invited to be the Director of the 2006 Schumann Anniversary Festival at Cadogan Hall and the Director of Schumann 200 Festival at King’s Place in 2010. In 2014 she presented her Sheaffer Sunday Matinees 2014 at St Johns Smith Square (four of her words and music programmes). This year is the fourth series of her Kings Place Coffee Concerts Series (Word/Play).
Lucy Parham is a Professor of Piano at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London.
"Lucy Parham's trailblazing evening concerts in which she fuses music and words with the help of some of our most distinguished thespians, have become one of the must -see events on the musical calendar. In an age that has seen the piano become increasingly objectified, Parham takes her listeners back to a golden age when music was a metaphor for life itself. Hers is playing that is not so much about the actual notes but exploring the elusive regions of expressive reverie that lie tantalisingly hidden between and behind them.” BBC Music Magazine, April 2014