Artistic Director of the Honens International Piano Competition and Festival in Calgary, Jon Kimura Parker is a veteran of the international concert stage, with multiple solo appearances in the Berlin Philharmonie, Carnegie Hall, London’s South Bank, the Sydney Opera House, and the Beijing Concert Hall, Jon Kimura Parker continues to perform to great acclaim. Conductors he has recently worked with include Teddy Abrams, Claus Peter Flor, James Gaffigan, Hans Graf, Matthew Halls, Pablo Heras-Cassado, Jeffrey Kahane, Gianandrea Noseda, Peter Oundjian, Larry Rachleff, Lahav Shani, Bramwell Tovey, Joshua Weilerstein, David Zinman, Xu Zhong and Pinchas Zukerman. A true Canadian ambassador of music, Mr. Parker has given command performances for Queen Elizabeth II, the U.S. Supreme Court, and the Prime Ministers of Canada and Japan. He is an Officer of The Order of Canada, his country’s highest civilian honor. This past May he was also awarded an Honorary Doctorate at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, and he also holds an Honorary Fellowship from the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto.
Last season Mr. Parker appeared at Carnegie Hall in Prokofiev Piano Concerto No. 3 with Larry Rachleff conducting Rice University’s Shepherd School Symphony Orchestra. He was guest soloist with the National Symphony in Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue in a program that was the Kennedy Center’s first live stream on medici.tv. He also performed Brahms 2nd Piano Concerto in Jeffrey Kahane’s final season as music director of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra. This season he appears as guest soloist with orchestras including the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Utah Symphony, and the Toronto Symphony.
As a founding member of Off the Score, Jon Kimura Parker performs with legendary Police drummer Stewart Copeland, featuring his own arrangements of music by Prokofiev, Ravel and Stravinsky. Mr. Parker also tours as a founding member of the Montrose Trio, with violinist Martin Beaver and cellist Clive Greensmith. The Washington Post’s review of the Montrose Trio’s first tour in 2015 proclaimed them “poised to become one of the top piano trios in the world.” He performs as duo partner regularly with James Ehnes, Aloysia Friedmann, Lynn Harrell, Jamie Parker, Orli Shaham, and violinist Cho-Liang Lin, and together they have given world premieres of works by Paul Schoenfield, John Harbison, and Steven Stucky.
As a member of the outreach project Piano Plus, Mr. Parker toured remote areas including the Canadian Arctic, performing classical music and rock’n’roll on everything from upright pianos to electronic keyboards. In commemoration of his special performances in war-torn Sarajevo in 1995, he was a featured speaker alongside humanitarians Elie Wiesel and Paul Rusesabagina at the 50th Anniversary of the relief organization AmeriCares. An unusually versatile artist, Mr. Parker has also jammed with Audra McDonald, Bobby McFerrin, Pablo Ziegler, and Doc Severinsen. His YouTube channel features the Concerto Chat videos, promoting the piano concerto repertoire.
Jon Kimura Parker is Professor of Piano at the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University in Houston, and has lectured at The Juilliard School, the Steans Institute, NYU, Princeton, and Yale. He is the founding Artistic Advisor of the Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival, where he has given world premieres of new works by Peter Schickele and Jake Heggie.
Jon Kimura Parker has recorded music of Tchaikovsky, Prokofiev, Chopin and PDQ Bach for Telarc, music of John Adams for Canary Classics, Mozart Concerti for CBC, and Stravinsky, Mozart, Schubert, Schumann, Di Liberto and Hirtz under his own label. His new CD Fantasy features Fantasies of Schubert and Schumann, as well as the sensational Wizard of Oz Fantasy by William Hirtz, receiving this praise from Classical Candor: “The reading is riveting. Parker scores with another favorite recording of the year.”
“Jackie” Parker studied with Edward Parker and Keiko Parker, Lee Kum-Sing at the Vancouver Academy of Music and the University of British Columbia, Marek Jablonski at the Banff Centre, and Adele Marcus at The Juilliard School. He won the Gold Medal at the 1984 Leeds International Piano Competition. He is married to violinist/violist Aloysia Friedmann, and their daughter Sophie is a student at Rice University. For further information, please see jonkimuraparker.com, honens.com, montrosetrio.com, offthescore.com, and oicmf.org.