Louise Bessette

Louise Bessette, piano

A versatile musician and a piano wizard, Louise Bessette is much in demand as a concert artist in Europe, America, and Asia. Numerous organizations and international competitions have seen fit to reward her talent, and her reviews are constantly laudatory. She has recorded a wide variety of repertoire both as a soloist and with chamber ensembles, appearing the world over with distinguished orchestras and by invitation to first-rate festivals. Many composers write especially for her. In 2019, Louise Bessette received the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award, Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award for Classical Music. The GGPAA are Canada’s highest honour in the performing arts. In 2016, she was honoured in London, University of Western Ontario, where she received the degree of Doctor of Music, honoris causa, to celebrate her accomplishments as an internationally recognized performer. As a pianist with an eclectic repertoire, and always eager to promote exchange with other art forms, Louise Bessette recorded works by Alkan and Grieg for a film soundtrack in 2009. Hidden diary by French film director Julie Lopes-Curval, starring Catherine Deneuve and Marie-Josée Croze, was presented as world premiere at the Festival des Films du Monde in Montréal (2009), and then in movie theatres all over the world. Louise Bessette received her tenth Opus Prize from Conseil québécois de la musique in 2021. In 2015, she was listed as one of Canada’s top 25 pianists by CBC Music. First Prizes at Eckhardt-Gramatté National Music Competition (1981), Concours International de Musique Contemporaine (Saint-Germain-en-Laye, 1986), International Gaudeamus Competition (Rotterdam, 1989), Femme de l’Année at Salon de la Femme de Montréal (Arts category, 1989), Prix Québec-Flandre (1991), Member of the Order of Canada (2001), Officier de l’Ordre national du Québec (2005), Canadian Music Centre Ambassador (2009), Louise Bessette has been a professor of piano at the Conservatoire de musique de Montréal since 1996.

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