Angela Hewitt: Joy at her fingertips

On November 9 and 10, the OSM welcomes to its stage Canadian pianist Angela Hewitt. Regarded as one of the most compelling musicians of our time, Angela Hewitt commands the art of communicating joy through her playing.

From child prodigy to renowned soloist

Good fortune attended Angela Hewitt in her earliest years. She gave her first piano recital at the age of four. After completing studies at the Royal Conservatory in Toronto, she worked with Jean-Paul Sévilla at the University of Ottawa. After earning her degree there, Angela excelled in several international competitions. In 1985, she won the International Bach Piano Competition in Toronto. Since then, recitals, international tours and recordings flowed at a steady pace. Named Artist of the Year at the 2006 Gramophone Awards and a four-time Juno Award winner, she was also made an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2000.

Bach, the faithful travelling companion

The clarity of thought and articulation that playing Bach demands are very helpful with other composers, particularly Beethoven.

— Angela Hewitt

Not long after her International Bach Competition win, Angela Hewitt saw her career skyrocket, particularly in Europe. She chose at the time to embark on recording Bach’s complete works for keyboard, and during her “Bach Odyssey,” from 2016 to 2022, she presented the totality of this output in 12 international recitals. Acclaimed by critics as “today’s finest exponent of Bach’s keyboard music,” in 2020, Angela Hewitt was awarded the City of Leipzig’s Bach Medal. On hearing her play the complete Well-Tempered Clavier at the Edinburg Festival, one London Times critic wrote, “… the freshness of Hewitt’s playing made it sound as though no one had played this music before.

Sharing the music

A passionate and tireless musician, Angela Hewitt shares her expertise in masterclasses around the world as well as online. Since 2005, she serves as Artistic Director of the Trasimeno Music Festival (Italy) where, over a seven-day period, she performs as a soloist, chamber player, conductor—conducting from the piano—alongside young actors, artists and writers.

From 1994 to 2004, she was part of the Piano Six initiative, giving concerts and masterclasses in various remote Canadian communities, as well as in schools. Confident that music can improve the lives of children and adults alike, Angela Hewitt became the first ambassador for OrKidstra, a social development project located in Ottawa, inspired by El Sistema.

Angela Hewitt will perform at the Maison symphonique on November 9 and 10 in the program Beethoven’s Triple Concerto in OSM Colours.