John Blacklow

John Blacklow

Faculty, Professor of Piano

DMA, University of Southern California
MM, The Juilliard School
BA, Harvard University

604 O'Neill Hall of Music and Sacred Music
(574) 631-7658

Hailed for his "powerful and eloquent" playing (New York Times), as “a gifted musical presence with a high sense of pianistic fantasy” (Salzburger Nachrichten) and “capable of the utmost in virtuosity” (Fanfare Magazine), pianist John Blacklow has toured the U.S. Europe, and Asia as a soloist and chamber musician.

Blacklow has been presented in venues such as Queen Elizabeth Hall and Wigmore Hall in London, Musikverein in Vienna, the Louvre in Paris, the Konzerthaus in Berlin, the Royal Conservatoire in Brussels, the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. Alice Tully Hall, Zankel Hall, Merkin Hall, and the Morgan Library in New York City, the Myra Hess Memorial Concert Series in Chicago, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, UCLA Live, among many others.  Blacklow was selected with violinist Jennifer Frautschi by Carnegie Hall and the European Concert Hall Organization for their “Rising Stars” program, and the duo was received with high acclaim at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Mozarteum in Salzburg, Cité de la Musique in Paris, the Konzerthaus in Vienna, Palais des Beaux Arts in Brussels, and the Megaron in Athens Greece, as well as on Carnegie’s own “Distinctive Debuts” series. They have since appeared in Symphony Hall in Detroit, the Windham Music Festival in New York, the Wilson Center for the Arts in Wisconsin, Harvard Musical Association, Wellesley College, as well as on NPR’s “Performance Today", Radio France and BBC 3 in the United Kingdom.  In 2014, Albany Records released a recording of the Three Sonatas for Violin and Piano of Robert Schumann, which was praised by Fanfare Magazine:  "Frautschi and Blacklow really get this music, and because of this they deliver performances with both finesse and passion.  Not one phrase goes by without some detail striking the listener, and the best part is that none of this sounds forced or artificial in feeling." “Last year violinist Christian Tetzlaff and pianist Lars Vogt released a recording of all three Sonatas…and it is the only true competition for the Frautschi and Blacklow disc.” 

Blacklow is an enthusiastic interpreter of new music, premiering works by composers such as Louis Andriessen, Steve Mackey and Magnus Lindberg. Albany Records released a CD of works by Barbara White, featuring world premiere recordings of chamber and solo piano works.  The following year, Bridge Records released Dmitri Tymoczko's Eggman Variations for piano and strings, recorded with the Corigliano Quartet, and on a later disc the Rube Goldberg Variations with Atlantic Brass. Centaur Records released a recording of three Soviet era sonatas (Shostakovich, Prokofiev, and Kabalevsky) for cello and piano with Karen Buranskas.

In 2015, Albany Records released American Duoswith Blacklow in collaboration with violinist Jennifer Frautschi.  The CD features five works by American contemporary composers Dan Coleman, Stephen Hartke, Steve Mackey, Elena Ruehr, and Barbara White.  He has also recorded for Universal Music Ltd., Deutsche Grammophon iTunes, and EDI, and has performed for many live radio broadcasts around the globe.

Blacklow has performed in several capacities with the Los Angeles Philharmonic. As keyboardist, he has worked under conductors including Esa-Pekka Salonen, Pierre Boulez, Leonard Slatkin, John Adams, and Marin Alsop, and performed in the world premiere of Soundings by John Williams at the gala opening of the Walt Disney Concert Hall. Blacklow has also participated on numerous occasions with the LA Philharmonic's Chamber Music Society, on the Green Umbrella New Music Series, and has joined the orchestra on several US tours. Blacklow has also appeared with the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, Princeton Sound Kitchen, the Coolidge and Corigliano Quartets, Quartetto Prometeo, and many prominent recitalists.

Steinway Artist, Blacklow was a student of Tatiana Yampolsky, graduating from both Harvard University and The Juilliard School; he also studied under John Browning, Bella Davidovich, and Leonard Shure.