Eric Himy is one of those pianists whose performances are rare gems. He has been hailed as a throwback to another era, a colorist with a technique that transcends normal barriers in the pursuit of the rare magical combination of music with meaning, yet alive with visceral energy and passion and he excels in exploiting the resources of the instrument to create something totally new and out of the ordinary going beyond the score.
His playing has been described by The New York Times as “flawlessly poised, elegant and brilliant. Mr. Himy has a formidable technique, and he deploys a wide range of colorings.” The Revue Musicale De Suisse Romande wrote: “There is some Horowitz in those steel wrists and those rubber fingers: a feline approach to the keyboard, alternating caressing velvet paws and nervous strokes of claws, a sensually gourmand exploitation of sonorities, a high-level eloquence, virtuoso”.
His compelling artistry has intrigued audiences around the world and he has received critical acclaim in the United States, Canada, South America, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Egypt, France, Germany, Italy, Malta, Monaco, Morocco, Panama, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Spain, and Slovenia. Mr. Himy has been heard most notably at The Kennedy Center, Carnegie Recital Hall, The Frick Collection, The Phillips Collection, Teatro Amazonas, Salle Cortot and Salle Gaveau in Paris and on NPR “Performance Today."
A champion of contemporary composers, Mr. Himy commissioned “Gargoyles” by the American composer Lowell Liebermann and gave the world premiere at his debut recital in Lincoln Center's Alice Tully Hall (this American work has gone on to become one of the most popular contemporary piano pieces and has been recorded and performed by many pianists including Stephen Hough and also Yuja Wang, who performed it in Carnegie Hall in 2013).
A Juilliard graduate, Mr. Himy began piano studies at age six, giving his first concert at age 10. He was guest soloist with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra at age 15, and at 19 he made his National Symphony Orchestra debut under Hugh Wolf as well as performing with conductors Russell Stanger, Serge Baudo, Kenneth Schermerhorn, and with Antoni Wit, who was making his American debut.
Mr. Himy went on to win numerous competitions and awards including the Gold Medal at the 1988 World Piano Competition in Cincinnati, the Kosciuszko Chopin Prize in New York, and top honors in the 1991 Milosz Magin International Competition in Paris.
He has replaced ailing soloists on many occasions such as Pascal Rogé and Alain Planes. Himy studied biochemistry and music at the University of Maryland, and received a Master of Music degree from the Juilliard School in New York, having studied with Thomas Schumacher, Adele Marcus and Josef Villa.