Michael Roll (pianist)

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Michael Roll (born 1946) is an English classical pianist, winner of the first Leeds International Piano Competition in 1963.

Roll, born in the UK to Viennese Jewish parents, was a child prodigy who performed on the concert platform with the City of Birmingham Orchestra at the age of ten and at the Royal Festival Hall aged twelve under the direction of Sir Malcolm Sargent.[1] Roll won the Leeds Piano Competition aged only seventeen,[2] while still a pupil at Roundhay School.[3] As of 2016, he remains the competition's youngest winner.[4]

His success at Leeds led to appearances worldwide, working with conductors such as Boulez, Boult, Giulini, Haitink, Masur, Previn, Sawallisch, Sanderling and more recently Gergiev and Steinberg. In 1973 he completed an acclaimed tour of Southern Africa.[5] Orchestras have included the London Symphony, London Philharmonic, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic, BBC Symphony, Leipzig Gewandhaus and Boston Symphony orchestras, with whom Michael made his American debut in 1974 with Sir Colin Davis. International festivals have included Vienna, Edinburgh, Hong Kong and Aldeburgh, where he performed together with Benjamin Britten. He has also appeared on sixteen occasions at the Promenade concerts at the Royal Albert Hall in London.

Roll is married to pianist Juliana Markova, and they have one son, Maximilian.[6]


  1. ^ Oxford Philomusica
  2. ^ Portland Piano International Archived 2008-12-01 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ Dame Fanny Waterman
  4. ^ Alfred Hickling (6 August 2009), "An audience with the 'field marshal' of the Leeds International Piano Competition", The Guardian, retrieved 3 January 2017
  5. ^ Michael Roll photo 1973 touring Southern Africa
  6. ^ Harrison Turner Archived 2009-08-28 at the Wayback Machine

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