Pierre-Laurent Aimard studied at the Lyon and Paris Conservatories. At the age of 12, he was introduced to Olivier Messiaen, and later he became one of the finest interpreters of Messiaen’s music. His teachers were Yvonne Loriod, a pianist and Messiaen’s wife, and Gyorgy Kurtag, Messiaen’s student. In 1973, he won the first prize at the Messiaen International Competition in Paris; in 1976 he was engaged as the first solo pianist for the Ensemble InterContemporain.
He has been invited to perform at Berlin’s Philharmonie and Mozarteum Salzburg. He has played with many of the great orchestras under such acclaimed conductors as Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Pierre Boulez, Christoph von Dohnanyi, Charles Dutoit, Philippe Jordan, James Levine, Zubin Mehta, Jonathan Nott, Seiji Ozawa, Andre Previn, David Robertson, Sir Simon Rattle, Christoph Eschenbach, and Vladimir Jurowski. He has given first performances of works by Pierre Boulez, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Gyorgy Ligeti, George Benjamin, Stephen Reich, Marco Stroppa, Elliott Carter, Peter Eotvos, and Harrison Birtwistle.
At present, Pierre-Laurent is an artist-in-residence with the Vienna Symphony Orchestra. He performs at the world’s best concert halls. He participates in prestigious festivals, including those in Lucerne, Tanglewood, Salzburg, Berlin, London, Graz, Ruhr, and La Roque-d’Antheron. He is the Artistic Director of the famous Aldeburgh Festival. He has extended the exclusive contract he signed with Deutsche Grammophon more than 10 years ago.