Press

Utah Symphony Catches a Rising Star: Pianist Conrad Tao

  • Salt Lake Tribune

“Conrad Tao is for real. The 17-year-old American pianist, whose star has only grown brighter in the 15 months since he bowled over the Abravanel Hall crowd as a last-minute substitute for Horacio Gutiérrez in Rachmaninoff’s Paganini Rhapsody, showed that his return invitation was well-earned. His bravura performance of another crowd-pleasing warhorse, Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1, elicited a rowdy ovation from the near-sellout house on Friday.”

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Piano phenom, 17, makes a blazing debut with the DSO

  • The Detroit News

“Whatever the age cut-off may be for child prodigies, 17-year-old pianist Conrad Tao has left that category somewhere back in his young past. To judge from his debut Saturday night with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Tao already owns a place among the world’s musical virtuosos. Prodigious he is indeed. To put it plainly, Tao blew the doors off Saint-Saens’ Piano Concerto No. 2 in G minor with a performance that was no less seductive in its lyrical beauty than hair-raising in its technical brilliance.”

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George Gershwin, Aaron Copland and Conrad Tao Thrill at JSO Opening Concert

  • Season Ticket

“17-year-old Conrad Tao was the brilliant pianist for George Gershwin’s (1898-1937) Concerto in F Major for Piano and Orchestra. Tao is seasoned beyond his years and he was immediately immersed in the music and in his responsibility to interpret Gershwin’s piece to the audience… If anyone could pull off the Gershwin-esque flair, it was Tao. The young soloist was, in a word, impressive.”

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17-year-old Pianist Amazes at Cliburn Concerts

  • Dallas Morning News

“Tao isn’t yet old enough to enter the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, but in a very substantial program at Bass Performance Hall he demonstrated surer technical command and more probing musicianship than most of the competition’s oldest contestants. This is a major talent. Rarely has Beethoven’s Appassionata Sonata had a more gripping performance, by turns mysterious and defiant. The mere chords of the second-movement theme were balanced with exquisite sensitivity to harmonic implications.”

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Conrad Tao Dazzles Cliburn Audience

  • Dallas Magazine

“he continually uncovered the energy and emotional underpinnings inherent in this music, reaching toward the timeless, universal qualities it contains… Beethoven’s Appassionata Sonata was equally breathtaking… [as was] his ability, through subtle give and take of tempo, to make these works of Rachmaninoff, Debussy, and even Stravinsky sing.”

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Conrad Tao: Prodigious talent on display at Chinese Embassy

  • The Washington Post

” Tao, though, is indeed a remarkably gifted young man. After opening with three Debussy preludes, he gave the premiere of his own “Three Songs” — well-constructed miniatures exploiting different moods and textures on the piano.”

“As a pianist, Tao is also mature beyond his years. His platform demeanor is unself-conscious and totally focused on the music.”

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Crowd rhapsodic over teen’s Rach

  • The Salt Lake Tribune

“Sixteen-year-old American pianist Conrad Tao won several hundred Utah fans Friday night with his energetic performance of Rachmaninoff’s beloved “Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini.” In fact, Tao’s dazzling finger work got an even noisier ovation from the Abravanel Hall crowd than superstar Hilary Hahn did with her splendid Tchaikovsky a couple of weeks ago.”

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