Olga Kern


With a vivid onstage presence, dazzling technique, and keen musicianship, Russian-American pianist Olga Kern is widely recognized as one of the great artists of her generation. She was born into a family of musicians in Russia and began studying piano at the age of five, and at seventeen was awarded first prize at the Rachmaninoff International Piano Competition. In 2001, she won a historic Gold Medal at the Van Cliburn International Piano Competitionā€”the first woman to do so in more than thirty years.

A Steinway Artist, Ms. Kern is a laureate of a number of international competitions. In 2016 she was Jury Chairman of both the Cliburn International Amateur Piano Competition and the first Olga Kern International Piano Competition, where she also holds the title of Artistic Director. Kern frequently gives master classes and serves on the piano faculty of the Manhattan School of Music. In 2019, she was appointed the Connie & Marc Jacobson Director of Chamber Music at the Virginia Arts Festival.