Martin Cousin (piano)
Martin Cousin is now regarded as one of the most exceptional pianists of his generation, having been awarded 1st prize at the 2005 Ettore Pozzoli International Piano Competition (Seregno, Italy) and Gold Medal at the 2003 Royal Over-Seas League Music Competition (London).
Martin has appeared regularly in the major British musical venues since graduating from the Royal College of Music, making his London solo debut at the Purcell Room in 1998. Numerous solo recitals followed, most notably at the Wigmore Hall in 2001, 2005, and 2011 and he has appeared as concerto soloist with the London Philharmonic, Halle, Royal Philharmonic, Philharmonia and BBC Concert Orchestras.
Performances further afield have included tours of New Zealand, Italy, the US and concerts in Stockholm, Brussels, Toronto, Berne and The Hague.
2006 saw the release of his debut CD, Rachmaninov's Sonata No.1 and Morceaux de Salon with SOMM Recordings, which was selected as Classical CD of the week by the Daily Telegraph.
The US magazine Fanfare added, "This is the performance of the 1st Sonata that I have always heard in my head but never thought I'd actually get to hear with my ears. This guy's the Real Deal!" His second CD for SOMM, featuring Glazunov’s piano sonatas, was released in 2010 to great acclaim, with Gramophone stating that the new release is ‘in every way, an impressive disc.’
His latest disc of Rachmaninov’s Etudes-Tableaux was released in 2014 and was proclaimed ‘a landmark recording’ by the Observer with a 5-star review. Classical Source added, ‘This is one of the best solo piano records I have heard for a very long time – the more so considering it faces some pretty severe competition in the catalogues. Those who do not know these extraordinarily original masterpieces are strongly advised to acquire this disc. There is none better’.
Fanfare Magazine proclaimed, ‘Based on the present disc and on the towering performance of the First Sonata on his debut CD, I am prepared to state that Cousin is among the most distinguished Rachmaninoff pianists of our generation.’
Martin is also a member of the Aquinas Piano Trio and chamber music has taken him to places such as Prague, Tokyo, Indonesia, Thailand, Zimbabwe and Barbados.
Martin's hands were featured on the big screen in the Oscar-winning film "Shine", for the scenes involving Rachmaninov's 3rd Concerto.
photo by Jack Liebeck