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Scott Watkins: BIO & REPERTOIRE

ABOUT SCOTT WATKINS

"Scott Watkins is a polished player in his prime."
- Folio Weekly

"Watkins plays with great sweeps and washes of sound ... with a vivid imagination and fire ... this was a highly praiseworthy concert – a fulfilling musical evening."
- New York Concert Review

"Watkins plays authoritatively and expressively."
- The Dallas Morning News

Scott Watkins is an American classical pianist and graduate of The University of Cincinnati’s College-Conservatory of Music with a degree in piano performance where he held the Van Cliburn Scholarship and studied with Bela Siki. He was also a student of the late Canadian pianist Raymond Dudley at The University of South Carolina where he earned the Master of Music degree. He holds a Doctor of Music degree in piano performance from The Florida State University where he studied with the late Edward Kilenyi. He won the prestigious Artistic Ambassador Award in 1985, and the Patricia D’Angelus Award at the Memphis Beethoven International Piano Competition in 1999. Since those early days his career has taken him to many of the world's concert stages, and he has enjoyed many collaborations with some of the finest orchestras and noted soloists, including soprano Elizabeth Futral, tenor Stanford Olsen, and violinists Eugene Fodor and Hillary Hahn. He has worked with conductors Fabio Mechetti, Andrew Lloyd Jones, Heping Liu, Michael Krajewski, Christopher Confessore, Phillip Spurgeon, Christopher Wilkins, Marguerite Richardson, and Daniel Dominick among many others.

Called “a polished player in his prime,” by Folio Weekly, his performances have been described as “fresh, forceful, and exciting” (Tallahassee Democrat) … and “colossal, with instances of delicate lyricism” (La Nacion, Buenos Aires). He was called “superb” by the Chicago Sun Times. As a recitalist, his playing has often been described as sophisticated: "Watkins keeps one ear open at all times for the composer’s voice” (Daily Bulletin, Tryon, North Carolina) …“a versatile interpreter with ethereal and delicate touches of color" (Die Welt, Frankfurt) … “always seeks to penetrate the depths of the music." (La Hora, Quito, Ecuador) … "a rousing, virtuosic performance, excitingly played with finesse and spirit. This was, in sum, a performance of distinction” (The State, Columbia, South Carolina) … "a sparkling performance, from the flourishes of the passage work and finely articulated voicing, to the full, lush sound of romanticism ... a splendid performance" (The Press Journal, Vero Beach, Florida). His most recent Carnegie Hall recital was described as "a highly praiseworthy concert - a fulfilling musical evening" (New York Concert Review).

Watkins is currently Associate Professor of Piano at Jacksonville University, and since 2011, he has held the position of Visiting Foreign Scholar at Beifang University’s Conservatory of Music and Dance in Yin Chuan, China, where he performs, teaches, and lectures during the Spring. Watkins’ latest recording, American Piano Sonatas, was released in September on Jacksonville University’s record label, Dolphinium Records, and includes music by Howard Hanson, William Schirmer, and Carlisle Floyd. Peter Burwasser, music critic for Fanfare Magazine writes that Watkins plays “splendidly, bringing a fine balance of colorful tonality and elegance” to the works. Scott Cantrell of The Dallas Morning News was equal in his praise writing that "Watkins offers an enterprising triptych of formally traditional but stylistically varied sonatas spanning seven decades [which] he plays authoritatively and expressively."

Concerto Repertoire

J.S. BACH Concerto No. 4 in A major, BWV 1055
J.S. BACH Concerto No. 1 in D minor, BWV 1052 (BUSONI)
BEETHOVEN Concerto No. 2 in B-flat major, Opus 19
BEETHOVEN Concerto No. 3 in C minor, Opus 37
BEETHOVEN Concerto No. 5 in E flat major, Opus 73
BEETHOVEN Concerto in C major, Op. 56, for Piano, Violin, and Cello (Triple Concerto)
BRAHMS Concerto No. 2 in B-flat major, Opus 83
CHOPIN Variations on Mozart's La ci darem la mano, Opus 2
CHOPIN Concerto No. 1 in E minor, Opus 11
DELLO JOIO Fantasy and Variations
GRIEG Concerto in A minor, Opus 16
GERSHWIN Rhapsody in Blue
GERSHWIN Second Rhapsody
GERSHWIN Concerto in F
HANSON Piano Concerto in G major, Opus 36
KHATCHATURIAN Concerto in D flat major
LISZT Concerto No. 2 in A major
MacDOWELL Concerto No. 1 in A minor, Opus 15
MARTINU Double Concerto (Piano and Timpani, String Orchestra)
MENDELSSOHN Concerto No. 2 in D minor, Opus 40
MOZART Concerto No. 12 in A major, KV 414
MOZART Concerto No. 17 in G major, KV 453
MOZART Concerto No. 27 in B flat major, KV 595
MUCZYNSKI Concerto No. 1, Opus 7
RACHMANINOFF Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Opus 18
RACHMANINOFF Concerto No. 4 in G minor, Opus 40
RACHMANINOFF Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, Opus 43
RUBINSTEIN Concerto No. 4 in D minor, Opus 70
SCHUMANN Introduction and Allegro appassionato, Opus 92
TCHAIKOVSKY Concerto No. 1 in B flat minor, Opus 23