Nikolai Lugansky is a pianist who combines elegance and grace with powerful virtuosity, a true incarnation of the Russian tradition on the international classical stage. Recognised as a master of Russian and late romantic repertoire, Lugansky is renowned for his interpretations of Rachmaninov, Prokofiev, Chopin and Debussy. He has received numerous awards for recordings and artistic merit.
He regularly works with top level conductors such as Yuri Temirkanov, Kent Nagano, Mikhail Pletnev, Gianandrea Noseda and Vladimir Jurowski. Recent concerto highlights include performances with Philharmonisches Staatsorchester Hamburg, BBC Symphony Orchestra in London, Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra, and Russian National Orchestra at Philharmonie de Paris, the Cleveland Orchestra and NHK in Tokyo. Lugansky also tours Europe with Malmö Symfoniorkester and Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal.
Described by Gramophone as “the most trailblazing and meteoric performer of all” Nikolai Lugansky is a pianist of extraordinary depth and versatility. As a regular recitalist the world over, he performs in Paris, Prague, Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Vienna Konzerthaus and Wigmore Hall in London. Lugansky appears at some of the world's most distinguished festivals, including the Aspen, Tanglewood Ravinia and Verbier festivals. Chamber music collaborators include Vadim Repin, Alexander Kniazev, Mischa Maisky and Leonidas Kavakos. Lugansky regularly performs at the La Roque-d'Anthéron Festival in France, with the last season marking the 23rd consecutive year of appearance.
Nikolai Lugansky has won several awards for his many recordings. His recital CD featuring Rachmaninov's Piano Sonatas won the Diapason d’Or, whilst his recording of concertos by Grieg and Prokofiev with Kent Nagano and the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin was a Gramophone Editor’s Choice. Lugansky has an exclusive contract with harmonia mundi and his Rachmaninov’s 24 Preludes, released in April 2018, met with enthusiastic reviews. He was described as having “an ability to enchant the ear… with a deep feeling for the music” (The Financial Times). His recording of solo piano music by Debussy was released in the 2018 anniversary year and his most recent release ‘César Franck, Préludes, Fugues & Chorals’ (March 2020) won the Diapason d’Or.
In addition to performing, Lugansky has been a professor at the Moscow State Tchaikovsky Conservatory since 1998. He is also the Artistic Director of the Tambov Rachmaninov Festival and is a supporter of, and regular performer at, the Rachmaninov Estate and Museum of Ivanovka.
In June 2019 Nikolai Lugansky received the Russian Federation National Award in Literature and Art, for his contribution to the development and advancement of Russian and international classical music culture over the past 20 years. Lugansky was awarded the honour of People’s Artist of Russia in April 2013, which is the highest honorary title for outstanding achievement in the arts.