Biography

Recognized worldwide as a pianist of virtuosity and poetic poise, Imogen Cooper has established a reputation as one of the finest interpreters of the classical repertoire.

During the 2013/14 season she will perform concertos with the London Symphony Orchestra and Mark Elder and with the Cleveland Orchestra and Jane Glover. She will play solo recitals in the USA, UK and the Netherlands, which will include completing a cycle of Schubert’s solo works at the Wigmore Hall. Imogen Cooper is celebrating the Britten centenary year by performing two of his song cycles with Christianne Stotijn. One of these was featured in a BBC Prom and in Imogen’s second appearance at the Proms this year, she performed a Schubert recital in the Royal Albert Hall; a solo sonata and the Grand Duo with Paul Lewis.

Last season, Imogen Cooper’s concerto performances included the Philadelphia Orchestra (play/direct), Deutsche Symphonie-Orchester with Mark Elder and a UK tour with the Budapest Festival Orchestra under Ivan Fischer. She also performed the Ravel G major concerto at the BBC Proms and Lincoln Center New York, with the Orchestra of the Royal Academy of Music and the Juilliard School, conducted by John Adams.

Imogen Cooper has a widespread international career and has appeared with the New York Philharmonic, Vienna Philharmonic, Royal Concertgebouw, Leipzig Gewandhaus, London Symphony and NHK Symphony Orchestras. She has also undertaken tours with the Camerata Salzburg, Australian and Orpheus Chamber Orchestras. Imogen Cooper has played with all the major British orchestras and has particularly close relationships with the Royal Northern Sinfonia and Britten Sinfonia, play/directing. Her recital appearances have included New York, Tokyo, Paris, Vienna, Prague, London and the Schubertiade in Schwarzenberg.

As a supporter of new music, Imogen Cooper has premiered two works at the Cheltenham International Festival; Traced Overhead by Thomas Adès (1996) and Decorated Skin by Deirdre Gribbin (2003). In 1996, she also collaborated with members of the Berliner Philharmoniker in the premiere of the quintet, Voices for Angels, written by the ensemble’s viola player, Brett Dean.

Imogen Cooper is a committed chamber musician and performs regularly with the Belcea Quartet and cellist Sonia Wieder-Atherton. As a Lieder recitalist, she has had a long collaboration with Wolfgang Holzmair in both the concert hall and recording studio (for Philips). Her discography also includes Mozart Concertos with the Royal Northern Sinfonia (Avie), a solo recital at the Wigmore Hall (Wigmore Live) and a cycle of solo works by Schubert recorded live and released under the label ‘Schubert Live’. Her first recording for Chandos Records features music by Brahms and Schumann.

Imogen Cooper received a CBE in the Queen’s New Year Honours in 2007 and was the recipient of an award from the Royal Philharmonic Society the following year. In 1997 she was awarded an Honorary Membership of the Royal Academy of Music and in 1999 she was made a Doctor of Music at Exeter University. Imogen Cooper was the Humanitas Visiting Professor in Classical Music and Music Education at the University of Oxford for 2012-13.

  • Imogen Cooper live at St Judes on the Hill, 2008
    Imogen Cooper live at St-Jude-on-the-Hill, 2008
    photo by Michael Eleftheriades
  • Masterclass with Alexandra Dariescu at Valloires Festival, 2007
    Masterclass with Alexandra Dariescu at Valloires Festival, 2007
    photo by
    Francoise Clerc
  • Alfred Brendel, Imogen Cooper, Volker Straus, Neville Marriner, Mike Oldham 1977
    Alfred Brendel, Imogen Cooper, Volker Straus, Neville Marriner, Mike Oldham at playback of Mozart Double Concerto with Academy of St Martin in the Fields, 1977
    photo by
    Mike Evans
  • Recording sessions, London, 1988
    Recording sessions
    London, 1988
    photo by
    John Batten
  • Imogen Cooper live in Toyko
    Imogen Cooper live in Tokyo
    photo by
    Shinji Takehara
  • Imogen Cooper portrait
    Imogen Cooper
    portrait
    photo by
    John Batten
  • Imogen Cooper silent
    Imogen Cooper
    silent
    photo by
    John Batten
  • Imogen Cooper as child
    Imogen Cooper…
    no comment

She is an outstanding artist, one of the finest pianists now playing. Go, listen, and wonder how many better pianists there are alive in this country, or anywhere.
Daily Telegraph