"There are many prized recordings of the Beethoven sonatas from past masters and current artists. But if I had to recommend a single complete set, I would suggest Mr. Lewis’s distinguished recordings." Anthony Tommasini, New York Times
"One of the most highly prized recording marathons of recent years.... An unmissable benchmark." Gramophone
Paul Lewis is internationally regarded as one of the leading musicians of his generation. His recent cycles of core piano works by Beethoven and Schubert have received unanimous critical and public acclaim worldwide, and consolidated his reputation as one of the world’s foremost interpreters of the central European classical repertoire. His numerous awards have included the Royal Philharmonic Society’s Instrumentalist of the Year, two Edison awards, three Gramophone awards, the Diapason D'or de l'Annee, the Preis Der Deutschen Schallplattenkritik, the Premio Internazionale Accademia Musicale Chigiana, and the South Bank Show Classical Music award. In 2009 he was awarded an honorary doctorate by the University of Southampton. He was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2016 Queen's Birthday Honours.
He performs regularly as soloist with the world's great orchestras, including the Boston Symphony, Chicago Symphony, London Symphony, London Philharmonic, Bavarian Radio Symphony, NHK Symphony, New York Philharmonic, LA Philharmonic, and the Royal Concertgebouw, Cleveland, Tonhalle Zurich, Leipzig Gewandhaus, Philharmonia, and Mahler Chamber Orchestras, in collaboration with such conductors as Sir Colin Davis, Stephane Deneve, Christoph von Dohnanyi, Sir Mark Elder, Bernard Haitink, Pablo Heras-Casado, Daniel Harding, Manfred Honeck, Paavo Järvi, Sir Charles Mackerras, Sir Neville Marriner, Andris Nelsons, Wolfgang Sawallisch and Robin Ticciati. He is also a frequent guest at the world's most prestigious festivals, including Lucerne, Mostly Mozart (New York), Tanglewood, Schubertiade, Salzburg, Edinburgh, La Roque d’Antheron, Rheingau, Klavier Festival Ruhr, and London’s BBC Proms where in 2010 he became the first pianist to perform a complete Beethoven piano concerto cycle in one season.
Paul Lewis’ recital career takes him to venues such as London's Royal Festival Hall, Alice Tully and Carnegie Hall in New York, the Musikverein and Konzerthaus in Vienna, the Theatre des Champs Elysees in Paris, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Berlin Philharmonie and Konzerthaus, Tonhalle Zurich, Palau de Musica Barcelona, Oji Hall in Tokyo, Melbourne’s Recital Centre, and the Sydney Opera House.
His multi-award winning discography for Harmonia Mundi includes the complete Beethoven piano sonatas, concertos, and the Diabelli Variations, Liszt’s B minor Sonata and other late works, and all of Schubert’s major piano works from the last six years of his life, including the 3 song cycles with tenor Mark Padmore. Future recording plans include the Brahms D minor piano concerto with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra and Daniel Harding, and solo works by Mussorgsky and Schumann.
Paul Lewis studied with Joan Havill at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London before going on to study privately with Alfred Brendel. Along with his wife, the Norwegian cellist Bjørg Lewis, he is Artistic Director of Midsummer Music, an annual chamber music festival held in Buckinghamshire, UK. In October 2015, he was appointed joint Artistic Director of the Leeds International Piano Competition.