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SINCE HIS DEBUT WITH THE ROYAL STOCKHOLM PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA IN 1981, ROLAND PÖNTINEN HAS PERFORMED WITH MAJOR ORCHESTRAS THROUGHOUT THE WORLD. HE HAS BEEN INVITED TO MANY PRESTIGIOUS FESTIVALS INCLUDING SCHLESWIG-HOLSTEIN, THE VERBIER FESTIVAL AND THE MOSTLY MOZART FESTIVAL IN NEW YORK AND WORKED WITH CONDUCTORS LIKE ESA-PEKKA SALONEN, RAFAEL FRÜHBECK DE BURGOS, EVGENY SVETLANOV AND LEIF SEGERSTAM TO NAME A FEW.
HIGHLIGHTS INCLUDE PERFORMANCES WITH THE PHILHARMONIA ORCHESTRA, LOS ANGELES PHILHARMONIC IN HOLLYWOOD BOWL, WITH THE SCOTTISH CHAMBER ORCHESTRA IN GLASGOW AND EDINBURGH AS WELL AS APPEARANCES AT THE LONDON PROMS WHERE HE HAS PLAYED BOTH THE GRIEG PIANO CONCERTO AND THE LIGETI PIANO CONCERTO.
Thanks to an insatiable musical appetite and a stupendous technique he has acquired a vast repertoire ranging from Bach to Ligeti. The emphasis is on the ”golden era” in piano literature from the 19th century – through the first half of the 20th century with composers such as Debussy, Busoni, Szymanowski and Rachmaninov. Often immersed in large scale projects Pöntinen has recently performed the complete cycles of Beethoven Sonatas and Années de Pèlerinage by Liszt. Many composers, among them Sven-Erik Bäck, Veli-Matti Puumala, Anders Eliasson and Anders Hillborg, have dedicated works to him and in 2007 he gave the world premiere of Shchedrin’s Romantic Duets together with the composer at the Verbier Festival. Always in great demand as a chamber player Pöntinen has worked with artists of distinction like Barbara Hendricks, Janine Jansen, Nobuko Imai, Martin Fröst, Zvi Zeitlin, Torleif Thedéen, Håkan Hardenberger, Svante Henryson, Ulf Wallin, Arve Tellefsen, Christian Lindberg and Nicolai Gedda.
In the previous seasons Pöntinen has been soloist with Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra and Orchestre de La Suisse Romande and given solo recitals in
New York (The Frick Collection), London (Wigmore Hall), Bogotá, Istanbul and most recently at the Verbier Festival 2016.
The current season include tours in Japan, Taiwan, England and Holland as well as
performances of Messiaen’s Turangalîla Symphony together with Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra under Sakari Oramo and a recording of Bernstein’s The Age of Anxiety with Arctic Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Christian Lindberg.
He has made more than 90 recordings for a.o. BIS, c p o, Arte Nova, EMI and Philips. Roland Pöntinen is also active as a composer and his Blue Winter was performed by the Philadelphia Orchestra under Wolfgang Sawallisch at Carnegie Hall in 1998. He has also arranged music by Legrand, Joni Mitchell and Weill for the trumpet player Håkan Hardenberger and Academy of St Martin in the Fields.
Pöntinen is a member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Music and in 2001 he received the Litteris et Artibus – a royal medal for recognition of eminent skills in the artistic field.