The Austrian pianist Gottlieb Wallisch has placed himself squarely in the long tradition of Viennese music, combining Classical-period works and contemporary music in his programs.
He is also a noted impresario and educator.
Wallisch was born in Vienna on August 7, 1978. His whole family was musical, and his great-uncle Johann Nepomuk David was a noted composer. Wallisch was something of a child prodigy, winning admission at age six to a class for gifted children at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna. He was the school's youngest student at the time. Wallisch gave his first concert in Vienna at seven. He went on to study in Vienna with Heinz Medjimorec, with Pascal Devoyon at the University of the Arts in Berlin, and with and Jacques Rouvier in Paris. A first prize at the Stravinsky Awards International Piano Competition for young players in the U.S. drew attention, as did a debut at the Wiener Musikverein when he was 12.
Wallisch made his formal debut under the baton of Yehudi Menuhin in 1996 and has gone on to perform under a long list of prestigious conductors including Giuseppe Sinopoli, Kirill Petrenko, and Bruno Weil. A noted chamber music player, he has performed with the Artis Quartett and Julian Rachlin, among others. Both as a recitalist and as a chamber player he has been noted for his advocacy of contemporary music, and he played in the world premiere performance of the Trio for piano, violin and metronome by Sebastian Themessl at the European Forum in the Austrian town of Alpbach in 2008. He has been among the few champions of American composer George Antheil in the German-speaking sphere. Wallisch has been a fixture of the Central European festival scene, appearing at the Salzburg Festival, the Beethovenfest Bonn, and the Ruhr Piano Festival, among others. He has been represented by the U.S. talent firm Steinway Artists.
Wallisch has recorded for the Naxos, Linn, and Alpha labels, among others, issuing a reading of the rare piano adaptation of Beethoven's Violin Concerto in D major, Op. 61, on the latter imprint in 2018. He has taught at the University of the Arts in Berlin and the Geneva Conservatory, and he is a co-founder of the Austro-Armenian Music Festival in Yerevan, Armenia, and, with Themessl, the International Summer Academy Lans in Austria's Tyrol region.