Zee Zee, piano

Tuesday, July 2, 7:30 p.m.

Page Theatre, Saint Mary’s University

Artist Bio

An imaginative and electrifying performer, Zee Zee is unique among the young generation of pianists. Described as “full of enthusiasm and glamour, radiating the vigor of youth” (Chinese Gramophone), her interpretations and communicative abilities have been praised as “taking us to another reality…bright, expressive, and moving to the extreme” (Belgischer Rundfunk), while her creative maturity has been hailed as “a powerful, passionate, and compelling representation of pure artistry” (Los Angeles Times).

In the 2023-24 season, Zee Zee returns to the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Ulster Orchestra, Borusan Istanbul Philharmonic, Tucson Symphony Orchestra, Wigmore Hall, and Macao International Music Festival, among others. She will play with the Armenian State Symphony Orchestra, Oxford Philharmonic, and Szczecin Philharmonic, and at the Concertgebouw, Prague Spring Festival, Parnu Music Festival, Minnesota Beethoven Festival, and InClassica Dubai International Music Festival, among others. She will also play the season-opening concerts of both the China Philharmonic and Shanghai Symphony Orchestra.

Highlights in the recent seasons include the season-opening concert with the Estonian National Symphony under Neeme Järvi, a performance with the Philharmonia orchestra at the Royal Festival Hall, a tour in the U.K. under Paavo Järvi, three performances with the Hong Kong Philharmonic under Christoph Koncz, Paavo Järvi, and Yu Long respectively, as well as the complete piano concertos of Beethoven and Saint-Saëns with the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra. She gave recitals at the Aspen Music Festival, Brevard Summer Music Festival, Lucerne Festival, Casa da Musica in Porto, Esplanade in Singapore, and Premiere Performance Hong Kong, among others.

In the past seasons, Zee Zee performed with leading orchestras worldwide including the BBC Symphony, BBC Philharmonic, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, London Philharmonic, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Philharmonia Orchestra, Belgian National Orchestra, Sinfonieorchester Basel, Tonhalle Orchestra Zürich, Borusan Istanbul Philharmonic, RTÉ Concert Orchestra, Macedonian Symphony, Warsaw Philharmonic, Janáček Philharmonic, Slovakia Philharmonic, Kristiansand Symphony, Turku Philharmonic, NHK Symphony, Hong Kong Philharmonic, Royal Bangkok Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, Minnesota Ochestra, Cincinnati Symphony, Seattle Symphony, Pasadena Symphony, Jacksonville Symphony, Pacific Symphony, and Hawaii Symphony, among others. Zee Zee was a BBC New Generation Artist from 2013-2015 and performed at the Royal Albert Hall as a part of the BBC Proms.

Zee Zee has given a number of notable recitals, including at the Wigmore Hall in London, De Doelen in Rotterdam, Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., Lincoln Center in New York, Vancouver Recital Society, and Hong Kong’s Premiere Performances, and has appeared at festivals such as MiTo Festival, the Gilmore Festival, Aspen Music Festival, Ravinia Festival, Brevard Music Center Summer Festival, Klavier-Festival Ruhr, Lucerne Festival, Biarritz Piano Festival, and the SJE Arts Series in Oxford.

She regularly works with some of today’s leading conductors, including Marin Alsop, Jonathan Bloxham, Lionel Bringuier, Charles Dutoit, Alondra de la Parra, Domingo Hindoyan, Paavo Järvi, Neeme Järvi, Christoph Koncz, Michał Nesterowicz, Jun Märkl, Julian Rachlin, Yan Pascal Tortelier, Roberto Trevino, and Xian Zhang.

A passionate chamber musician, Zee Zee is a founding member of the Z.E.N. Trio, alongside violinist Esther Yoo and cellist Narek Hakhnazaryan. The trio released their first album featuring works from Brahms and Dvorak in 2017, and the second album featuring Shostakovich, Babadjanian, and Rachmaninoff in 2019, both under Deutsche Gramophone. They tour regularly throughout the world, including the first highly acclaimed tour in North America in October 2019 with presenters such as San Francisco Performances, The Phillips Collection, Vancouver Recital Society, a 10-concert-tour in Australia with Musica Viva in August 2022, and European tours in May and November 2024.

Zee Zee is the founder and the artistic director of the Z+ international music festival, which takes place annually in the spring in Shanghai. As one of the biggest and most acclaimed chamber music festivals in Asia, she is in charge of its strategy, vision, and programming, cooperating with the best musicians around the world while contributing to the local community. The artists performing at the festival in April 2024 include Narek Hakhnazaryan, Clara-Jumi Kang, Sunwook Kim, Yura Lee, Ning Feng, Louis Schwizgebel, Julian Steckel, Esther Yoo, Haochen Zhang, and the Diotima Quartet.

In October 2019, Universal released her first album under Deutsche Gramophone, featuring Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G and Liszt’s Piano Concerto No. 2 with Paavo Järvi and the Philharmonia Orchestra; the second one, a solo album Journey under Decca Classics, featuring works from Wagner, Schönberg, and Liszt, was released in May 2022.

Zee Zee began her musical training in Berlin, Germany, at the age of five and soon became one of the most sought-after young artists of her generation. Having completed her piano studies with Dan Zhaoyi at the Shenzhen Arts School, Zee Zee continued her artistic development under the mentorship of Nelita True at the Eastman School of Music and Yoheved Kaplinsky and Robert McDonald at The Juilliard School, where she won the coveted Petschek Piano Award. Zee Zee was awarded first prize at China’s 1st International Piano Concerto Competition, the Gina Bachauer International Artists Piano Competition, and the Krainev International Piano Competition. She was also a prizewinner at the 2013 Queen Elizabeth Competition. She has studied at the Peabody Institute with Leon Fleisher and continues to receive guidance from Alfred Brendel. She is currently based in Berlin and New York.


Beethoven: Sonata No. 18

Schumann: Faschingwank aus Wien

Beethoven: 32 Variations in C minor

Schubert: Sonata in C minor D958