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Richard Saxel

Richard Saxel

...a haunting claim for anyone who warms to introspection presented with an enviable taste and clarity, this recital is outstanding.

Bryce Morrison, Gramophone

...a spellbindingly eerie account...Saxel demonstrates a sensitive understanding of the composers' idiosyncratic means of expression.

BBC Music Magazine

Solo - Piano


  • Richard Saxel - Piano


I am particularly interested in the links between Music and Art, and many of my programmes reflect this. My album 'Nocturne' developed this theme, and I have given many recitals drawing upon these links. I am very happy to indulge repertoire requests, but always guarantee accessible repertoire with one or two challenges and surprises! I really enjoy verbally introducing the music, explaining the links, and entertaining my audiences!

An example programme might be:

Mozart: Fantasia in D minor, K397

Brahms: Six Piano Pieces, Op.118

Wagner/Liszt: Isolde's Liebestod

Scarlatti: Sonatas (interspersed with)

Debussy: Estampes, Images & Preludes


Richard Saxel is a concert pianist who has established a reputation as one of the most engaging pianists of his generation, particularly through his easy rapport with his audiences. He has in the past won the National Federation of Music Societies Making Music Award, and works regularly with a huge variety of accomplished singers and instrumentalists. He records as a soloist for the Quartz Music label; his album 'Nocturne' was featured on Classic FM, and he has a wide range of solo and ensemble recordings available on Spotify and Apple Music. He has been a Steinway Artist for many years, and was elected as an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music in their 2016 Honours List, recognising a significant contribution to the music profession.

Richard studied the piano with the late Clifford Benson whilst reading a music degree at the University of York, and then with Michael Dussek as a postgraduate at the Royal Academy of Music. His musical interests owe much to the influence of these two outstanding teachers; whilst happy to explore solo repertoire, he also has a strong affinity for the art of chamber music and piano accompaniment. One of Richard's great attributes as a performer is his versatility. Equally comfortable as a concerto soloist or as an accompanist, his career has taken him around the world. For four years he was one of the six pianists in Piano Circus, who perform and broadcast contemporary music at major festivals, and he has worked with a fascinating variety of artists, from Indonesian puppeteers to ballet dancers, tango musicians, trapeze artists, music theatre performers, opera and jazz singers and also with the Endymion Ensemble under Gyorgy Kurtag. Richard has performed worldwide at many major festivals, including the Abu Dhabi International Festival, Istanbul International Festival, Lucerne Festival, La Roque D'Antheron, The Big Chill, the Victoria Arts Festival in Gozo, the Cheltenham Festival and the Dartington International Summer School as well as at several of London's leading venues including the Queen Elizabeth Hall and St. John's Smith Square, and at St. David's Hall in Cardiff. In 2012, Richard gave two concerts in Rome with Madeleine Mitchell, celebrating the Queen's Diamond Jubilee at the invitation of Her Majesty's British Ambassador to Italy, and was subsequently invited back to perform as a soloist. He is Director of Music at Cranleigh School in Surrey, where he has taught for over twenty years.