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Biography and career
Born on March 26, 1977 in Lincolnshire, England, Wass is the only British winner of the London International Piano Competition,, a prizewinner at the Leeds Piano Competition, and a former BBC Radio 3 New Generation Artist.
Wass has performed at many of the world’s finest concert halls including Wigmore Hall, Carnegie Hall and the Vienna Konzerthaus. He has performed as a soloist with numerous leading ensembles, including all of the BBC orchestras, the Philharmonia, Orchestre National de Lille, Vienna Chamber Orchestra, Hong Kong Philharmonic, RLPO, and under the baton of conductors such as Simon Rattle, Osmo Vanska, Donald Runnicles, Ilan Volkov and Vassily Sinaisky.
In June 2002, Wass appeared alongside Sir Thomas Allen, Mstislav Rostropovich and Angela Gheorghiu in a gala concert at Buckingham Palace to mark the Golden Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II, a performance that was broadcast live to millions of viewers around the world. In recent years Wass has become a regular guest at the BBC Proms, making his debut in 2008 with Vaughan Williams’ Piano Concerto, and returning in following seasons to perform works by Foulds Stravinsky, Antheil, and McCabe.
Known for his broad and eclectic repertoire, Wass has received critical acclaim for his recorded works from a wide range of styles and eras. In particular, he is known for his interpretations of composers such as Liszt, Franck, Beethoven and Bridge. Wass's survey of Bax’s piano music was nominated for a Gramophone Award and his discography boasts a number of Gramophone ‘Editor’s Choice’ recordings and BBC Music Magazine ‘Choices’.
Wass has also partnered with many of the leading artists of his generation,including Mitsuko Uchida, Steven Isserlis, Emmanuel Pahud, Richard Goode and members of the Guarneri Quartet and Beaux Arts Trio.
Ashley Wass is currently the Artistic Director of the Lincolnshire International Chamber Music Festival. Wass is currently Professor of Piano at the Royal College of Music, London, and is an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music.