ABOUT LEON McCAWLEY

His seemingly ascetic, self-contained persona would deftly step aside to allow comedy, fantasy and passion to hold the floor, on the back of a disarmingly profound and mercurial virtuosity…” Classical Source

One of Britain’s foremost pianists, Leon McCawley has forged a highly successful career since winning first prize in the 1993 International Beethoven Piano Competition in Vienna and second prize at the Leeds International Piano Competition the same year. Since then, his concert performances and extensive discography have established him as a pianist of great integrity and variety, bringing freshness and vitality to Classical, Romantic and 20th century repertoire. His recent CD of Schubert Piano Music for SOMM Recordings is no exception: ‘Here is an album communicated with such tenderness, naturalness and sincerity’ (5 star review in Classica Magazine, March 2019) and ‘McCawley knows how to gauge mood and colour. This is strong Schubert playing, the sort we might have had from Backhaus or Serkin.’ (Classical Ear, November 2018).

 

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NEWS

1515 March, 2019

5 STAR REVIEW FOR SCHUBERT

Leon has received a terrific 5 star review in France’s Classica Magazine for his Schubert disc on SOMM: ‘Leon McCawley seduces the listener by a spontaneous performance devoid of any sense of narcissism. Here is an album communicated with such tenderness, naturalness and sincerity’. For the full review and all the latest reviews of Leon’s Schubert disc click here.

 

1818 November, 2018

HAYDN SONATAS RECORDING: PART 2!

Leon was back in the recording studio this weekend recording his second volume of Haydn Piano Sonatas for SOMM Recordings at Turner Sims Concert Hall, Southampton. The disc is planned for an autumn 2019 release. Leon’s first Haydn album for SOMM was awarded a Diapason d’Or back in 2017.

 

2626 October, 2018

NEW CD RELEASE OF SCHUBERT PIANO MUSIC

Leon is delighted to announce today a major new release on SOMM Recordings of Schubert Piano Music. His new recording is the latest offering from a highly acclaimed partnership between SOMM and McCawley that has seen earlier discs devoted to Haydn, Chopin, Schumann, Brahms, Rachmaninov and Samuel Barber.

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CONCERTS

21st March 2019 MORPETH
Solo recital at Morpeth Methodist Church (7.30pm)
Book tickets

Mozart: Sonata No. 1 in C Major K.279
Beethoven: Sonata No. 32 in C Minor Op. 111
Schumann: Abegg Variations Op. 1
Hans Gál: Three Sketches Op. 7
Brahms: Klavierstücke Op. 119
Chopin: Polonaise-Fantasie Op. 61
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24th March 2019 DARLINGTON
Solo recital at Dolphin Centre (3pm)
Book tickets

Mozart: Sonata No. 1 in C Major K.279
Beethoven: Sonata No. 32 in C Minor Op. 111
Schumann: Abegg Variations Op. 1
Hans Gál: Three Sketches Op. 7
Brahms: Klavierstücke Op. 119
Chopin: Polonaise-Fantasie Op. 61
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5th-8th April 2019 DUBLIN
Adjudicating at Feis Ceoil
More info

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12th April 2019 CAMBRIDGE
Solo recital at West Road Concert Hall (7.30pm)
Book tickets

Mozart: Sonata No. 1 in C Major K.279
Beethoven: Sonata No. 32 in C Minor Op. 111
Schumann: Abegg Variations Op. 1
Hans Gál: Three Sketches Op. 7
Brahms: Klavierstücke Op. 119
Chopin: Polonaise-Fantasie Op. 61
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9th May 2019 GIJÓN, SPAIN
Orquesta Sinfónica del Principado de Asturias/Hans Graf at Teatro Jovellanos (8pm)
Book tickets

Schumann: Piano Concerto in A minor Op. 54
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10th May 2019 OVIEDO, SPAIN
OSPA/Hans Graf at  Auditorio Príncipe Felipe (8pm)
Book tickets

Schumann: Piano Concerto in A minor Op. 54

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PRESS – RECITALS

Birmingham Post, February 15th 2018
Solo Recital at Artrix, Bromsgrove
Bromsgrove Concerts’ imaginative programming brings hidden rewards, there in abundance on Friday when pianist Leon McCawley led us off the beaten track with a fascinating sequence of comparative rarities. We have perhaps more media-glittering pianists, but none can surpass McCawley in his thoughtfulness of approach, and his ability to make himself as one with an instrument new to him. His pedalling on Bromsgrove’s piano was so subtly coloured, so well-contoured to the phrasing…and always so right for the music under discussion. *****

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Classical Source March 1st 2016
Wigmore Hall Solo Recital March 1st 2016

Every time in this excellent Wigmore Hall recital when I thought I’d nailed the main, generating aspect of Leon McCawley’s style, he’d confound expectations. His seemingly ascetic, self-contained persona would deftly step aside to allow comedy, fantasy and passion to hold the floor, on the back of a disarmingly profound and mercurial virtuosity, and his playing just sounded right…

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Washington Post November 17th 2014
Solo Recital at Phillips Collection, Washington DC

A performance this weekend by British pianist Leon McCawley was another strong offering in the Phillips Collection’s excellent Sunday concert series…McCawley is a thoughtful, lyrical pianist, and he played everything with erudition, imagination and fastidiousness…

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PRESS – CONCERTOS

La Nueva España (Diario Independente de Asturias) 22nd January 2017
Orquesta Sinfónica del Principado de Asturias/Manuel López-Gómez at Auditorío Principe Felipe, Oviedo

In this programme we got to know Leon McCawley, considered today a poet of the keyboard. He is pure lyricism.

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La Nueva España (Gijón) 22nd January 2017
Orquesta Sinfónica del Principado de Asturias/Manuel López-Gómez at Teatro Jovellanos, Gijón

McCawley…demonstrated to the audience his mastery of the classic/romantic field of music. With his first entrance, McCawley brought a special feeling to the main theme, managing to achieve an exceptional expressiveness while maintaining the narrative…

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El Comercio, Asturias 21st January 2017
Orquesta Sinfónica del Principado de Asturias/Manuel López-Gómez at Teatro Jovellanos, Gijón

…this was a passionate and poetic Beethoven [Piano Concerto No. 3], full of energy and rhythm. McCawley is a pianist with a very lyrical and poetic touch, almost transparent and precise…

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RECORDINGS

Click on the cover images for reviews  and options to buy online

List of recordings

PHOTO GALLERY

Click on images for downloadable high res files

VIDEO

Featured videos from LEON McCAWLEY’S YOUTUBE CHANNEL: