One of the most promising Polish pianists of the young generation, Michal Karol Szymanowski was born in 1988 into a musical family. He graduated with honours from the Feliks Nowowiejski Academy of Music in Bydgoszcz, where he studied piano with Katarzyna Popowa-Zydron and symphonic-operatic conducting with Zygmunt Rychert. He developed his abilities with Eldar Nebolsin at the Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler in Berlin. At present he continues his piano education as a doctoral student at his alma mater as well as working as an Assistant Professor at the Music Academies in Bydgoszcz and in Lodz.
Szymanowski has won high awards in 16 national and 8 international piano competitions, including: the MozARTè International Piano Competition in Aachen (2016), the Asia-Pacific International Chopin Piano Competition in Daegu, Korea (2015), the Zarebski International Music Competition in Warsaw (2012), the Yamaha Music Foundation of Europe Piano Competition in Katowice (2011), the Paderewski International Piano Competition in Bydgoszcz (2010), the International Competition in Memory of Vladimir Horowitz in Kiev (2007), and the Polish National Chopin Piano Competitions in Warsaw (2008, 2015). In 2015 he was the highest placed second round competitor in the International Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw.
Michal Szymanowski has performed at many concerts and festivals throughout Poland, in other European countries (including Germany, England, Italy, Spain, France, Belgium and Switzerland) as well as on other continents (in the United States, Japan, Korea, Hong Kong, Brazil, Argentina and Venezuela). Of particular note, he has also performed concerts in the Palace of Nations in Geneva, the Paul VI Audience Hall in the Vatican
(a concert for Pope Benedict XVI, in front of an audience of 5,000 invited guests) and at Warsaw’s Belweder Palace for Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski, numerous philharmonic halls throughout the world as well as major festivals in Poland and abroad, including: Oficina de Música de Curitiba, the Chopiniana in Buenos Aires, Festival Europeo de Solistas in Caracas, Festival Pianistico di Roma, Long Lake Festival in Lugano, and the “Chopin and His Europe” Festival in Warsaw, where he brillantly performed piano concertos by Ignacy Jan Paderewski and Jozef Wieniawski.
He has performed under such eminent conductors as Alfredo Rugeles, Medardo Caisabanda, Jacek Kaspszyk, Antoni Wit, Marek Pijarowski and Michal Dworzynski with, among others, the Teresa Carreño Youth Orchestra of Venezuela, the Symphonic Orchestra of the National Theatre Cláudio Santoro in Brasilia, the Warsaw, Cracow, Wroclaw and Szczecin Philharmonic orchestras, Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Polish Sinfonia Iuventus Orchestra and Capella Bydgostiensis.
Apart from solo repertoire, Michał Szymanowski also frequently performs chamber music, in which his partners are the Silesian Quartet, Erzhan Kulibaev, Benedict Kloeckner, Anna Maria Staskiewicz, Maria Machowska, and many others.
Michal Szymanowski has released two solo albums for CD Accord, featuring compositions by Fryderyk Chopin, Ignacy Jan Paderewski, Karol Szymanowski and Jozef Wieniawski. The recordings were critically acclaimed. One reviewer wrote: “Uncommon talent and a pianist of great promise.”