Charles Owen (born 1971) is a British classical pianist.
Charles Owen was born in Cambridge and grew up in Hampshire and Worcestershire. The eldest of four children, his father is a Church of England clergyman and his mother a school teacher and archivist. He is the brother of John Owen, the Chief Designer of the Mercedes Formula 1 team.
After lessons from his first teacher, a pianist in his father’s congregation, he won a scholarship to the Yehudi Menuhin School where he studied under Seta Tanyel and collaborated with many fellow students, including Katharine Gowers and Paul Watkins.
Owen went on to study with the distinguished Russian pianist Irina Zaritskaya at the Royal College of Music, where he won the Chappell Gold Medal. This was followed by further studies with leading British pianist Imogen Cooper. Owen credits these two pianists as a major influence on shaping his own approach to the piano and music-making in general.
In 2011, Owen entered into a civil partnership with his long-term Australian partner Jason Groves.
Owen has performed in major concert venues around the world, including the Barbican Centre, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Wigmore Hall, Kings Place, Bridgewater Hall, the Sage Gateshead, Symphony Hall, Birmingham, the Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, the Brahms Saal in Vienna’s Musikverein, Musée d’Orsay, and Moscow Conservatoire.
He regularly appears at festivals such as the Aldeburgh Festival, Bath International Music Festival, Cheltenham Music Festival, Leicester International Music Festival, Perth Festival and the Ryedale festival.
Owen has performed concertos with world-renowned orchestras including the Philharmonia Orchestra, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, The Hallé, Aurora Orchestra and London Philharmonic Orchestra. He has collaborated with leading conductors such as Sir Mark Elder, Ryan Wigglesworth, Nicholas Collon and Martyn Brabbins.
Owen’s chamber music partners include Julian Rachlin, Chloë Hanslip, Augustin Hadelich, Nicholas Daniel, the Vertavo String Quartet, Takacs Quartet and the Elias Quartet. He also has a piano duo partnership with Katya Apekisheva.
Teaching and Masterclasses
In 2016, he was appointed Steinway & Sons UK Ambassador, a role which includes regular masterclasses at Steinway Hall and visits to many of the UK’s leading independent schools including Eton College, Winchester College & Westminster School, among others.
London Piano Festival
Brahms, Late Piano Music Op 76/79/116-119 (Avie Records, 2018)
Rachmaninov, The Two Piano Suites & Six Morceaux, Op11 - Katya Apekishava (Avie Records, 2017)
Jonathan Dove, In Damascus, Piano Quintet – Sacconi Quartet, Mark Padmore (Signum Classics, 2017)
Stravinsky, Piano Ballets – Petrushka & The Rite of Spring - Katya Apekisheva (Quartz, 2016)
J. S. Bach, The Six Keyboard Partitas (Avie, 2016)
Fauré, The Complete Barcarolles (Avie, 2011)
Fauré, The Complete Nocturnes (Avie, 2008)
Rachmaninov & Chopin, Cello Sonatas - Natalie Clein (EMI, 2006)
Brahms & Schubert, Cello Sonatas - Natalie Clein (Classics for Pleasure/ EMI, 2004)
Poulenc, Piano Music (Somm, 2003)
Janáček, Piano Music (Somm, 2002)
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- "Charles Owen and Katya Apekisheva Guildhall Professors and Highly-Acclaimed Piano Duo Perform Rachmaninov, 10 July | Russian Art + Culture". Russian Art + Culture. 2017-06-27. Retrieved 2018-09-26.
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- "The creator of a third Figaro opera talks about settling in Britain, the magic of cats and a fascination with music hall". Culture Whisper. Retrieved 2018-09-26.
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- "RedMare - Elena Langer, Charles Owen & Katya Apekisheva Song - BBC Music". BBC. Retrieved 2018-09-26.