Photo: Melle Meivogel
Nikola Meeuwsen (2002) already has a remarkably mature career as a promising young pianist. On 19 January 2024, he made his full-length solo debut at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. The programme will include works by Schubert, Beethoven, Brahms and Schumann. In 2025, he will make his third solo appearance with the Residentie Orkest.
At the age of 20, Nikola was the youngest musician ever to win the Grachtenfestival Prize and was the main Artist in Residence at this Amsterdam festival in 2023.
Nikola Meeuwsen is also spreading his wings abroad. A selection from his schedule. In October 2023, he will play Grieg's Piano Concerto in the famous Dvořák Hall of the Rudolfinum in Prague during the Young Prague International Festival for Young Talents. In November, he plays Beethoven's Fifth Piano Concerto with the Lithuanian National Orchestra in Dortmund. Ten days later, on the Flagey stage in Brussels, he will perform Mozart's Concerto for Two Pianos with the Sinfonia Varsovia and his piano teacher Avedis Kouyoumdjian, who enjoys performing with Nikola. In addition to Grieg's Piano Concerto, Chopin First Piano Concerto and Beethoven's Fifth Piano Concerto, Nikola has performed as soloist in Rachmaninov's Second Piano Concerto, Tchaikovsky's First Piano Concerto, Clara Schumann's Piano Concerto and Beethoven's First and Third Piano Concerto.
At the 2022 Gwyl Machynlleth Festival in Wales, Nikola gave a solo recital after artistic director and pianist Julius Drake heard Nikola play Scriabin's Fourth Sonata in the Great Hall of the Concertgebouw.
In June 2023 he played a concert in Scotland. The Times praised his recital in a five-star review: "Meeuwsen's supple technique drew out the delicacy and beauty of everything he played, and the evanescence of sound in Ravel's Tombeau de Couperin was enormously moving."
Nikola believes that communication is the essence of making music. This is why he admires legendary pianists such as Vladimir Horowitz, Sviatoslav Richter, Glenn Gould and Arthur Rubinsten, as well as living legends such as Grigory Sokolov, Ivo Pogorelich and Enrico Pace, who engage in a dialogue with their audiences and do not hesitate to express their innermost selves through music. For Nikola, communication with fellow musicians is also an indispensable source of inspiration. He loves the chamber music stage as much as the spotlight as a soloist.
Nikola performs with many leading young talents such as Noa Wildschut, Benjamin Kruithof and Alexander Warenberg. He has also performed with his teacher Enrico Pace. Their performance of Liszt's transcription for two pianos of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony was one of the highlights of The Hague’s 2019 Beethoven Festival. More concerts with Pace are planned.
Nikola excelled from an early age. He won the Steinway Competition in 2012 at the age of nine and the Royal Concertgebouw Competition in 2014. Nikola has given solo recitals throughout the Netherlands and across the border in Milan, Bologna, Trieste, Faro and Imola. He is a welcome guest at festivals. He has performed at the Storioni Festival, Schiermonnikoog Chamber Music Festival, International Chamber Music Festival Ede, Festival Classique, February Festival and Classical NOW! At the St Magnus Festival on the Orkney Islands in 2023, he gave a solo recital and performed with the Ragazze Quartet. Nikola has also performed with the Matangi Quartet, violinist Alexander Kerr, violist Vladimir Mendelssohn and in piano duos with Igor Roma, Anna Fedorova, Thomas Beijer, Avedis Kouyoumdjian and Enrico Pace.
Since 2010 Nikola has been studying with Marlies van Gent and since 2014 with Enrico Pace at the Accademia Pianistica in Imola. Currently Nikola is also a student at the Queen Elisabeth Chapel in Brussels with Frank Braley and Avedis Kouyoumdjian.
At home in The Hague, Nikola practices on a beautiful Bösendorfer grand piano on loan from the Nationaal Muziekinstrumenten Fonds (NMF).