Adjunct Assistant Professor
- Program:Keyboard Studies
- Division:Classical Performance and Composition
Mikhail Korzhev is an esteemed pianist who has joined the USC Thornton faculty as Adjunct Assistant Professor in Keyboard Studies while Professor Daniel Pollack is on sabbatical.
Korzhev is a pianist that “projects strength, atmosphere and the ability to tangle even the knottiest passages…” (International Record Review) is equally active as a solo recitalist, a performer with various chamber groups, a soloist with orchestras, and as a recording artist. His latest CD recordings, the two volumes of a Complete Piano Concertos by Ernst Krenek in collaboration with English Symphony Orchestra and Kenneth Woods were released by Toccata Classics in 2016 and 2017 to enthusiastic reviews in Gramophone, Diapason and other publications, made it to the “want list” of Fanfare magazine, became one of “10 Best Contemporary Records of the Year” by The Times (London), and in December 2017 made it to the list of “Top 10 Best Classical Records of the Year” by Forbes magazine. In September 2017 Korzhev became a recipient of a prestigious Anassilaos Prize, the annual award for the achievements in Arts and Sciences given by the local government of the province of Calabria (Italy).
Korzhev collaborated with several distinguished conductors: Sergiu Commissiona, Carlo Ponti Jr. and others, his chamber music collaborations include performing with soloists of Russian National Orchestra, Mladi Chamber Orchestra, Lyris String Quartet, and members of St. Petersburg and Tokyo String Quartets among others. His collaborative work was highly appreciated by Eugenia Zukerman, Richard Stolzman, Oleh Krysa and other noted musicians. Korzhev’s performances received a high critical acclaim from American and European press: ”The young Russian pianist… displayed a notable technical mastery which allowed for passionate moments of ardent lyricism as well as wonderful purity and fluency…” (Momento Sera, Rome).”Korzhev belongs to that exclusive club of super musicians…he already performs like a keyboard legend…he is a major talent.” (Salt Lake Tribune).
His particular interest in contemporary music has lead Korzhev to participate in the Virginia Waring International Piano Competition in 2005, which had the emphasis on the music of Ernst Krenek. As a winner of that competition Korzhev gave a recital in the Vienna’s Konzerthaus about which the Wiener Zeitung wrote: “Korzhev obviously has a lot of affection for Krenek’s style… brings out well the dramatic qualities of his music…” Following the success of his Vienna debut Korzhev recorded a CD of Krenek’s piano music, released by Phoenix Edition/Naxos in 2008 that became an instant top seller and received several very enthusiastic reviews in the press.
Korzhev’s discography also includes three CD recordings featuring compositions for solo piano and chamber works by a prominent English composer Gerard Schurmann (in collaboration with Alyssa Park and Lyris string quartet) and a compilation of 40 classical standards for the online music library Megatrax.com.
Korzhev combines his performing career with teaching. He taught at University of Southern California. Currently he is on the faculty of California State University at Fullerton and Chapman University. Since 2008 Korzhev is the faculty member at Beverly Hills International Music Festival. In the summer of 2009 he taught a summer course at the Bosendorfer Piano Academy in Vienna, Austria.
Korzhev holds a doctorate in piano performance from University of Southern California, where he studied with Daniel Pollack. His previous teachers include Alexander Satz and Vera Khoroshina at Moscow Conservatory College.