Denis Linnik

Belarus  I  Age 26

Denis Linnik began his musical education in his hometown of Maryina Horka, Belarus, when he was 6. Just two years later, he moved to Minsk to study piano and live with other talented young musicians—he says being constantly surrounded by music made it a truly inseparable part of his life. His musical development advanced quickly over the next years, leading him to success in youth competitions and successful stints at the State Gymnasium-College of Arts “I.O. Akhremchik” and the Belarusian State Academy of Music.

He moved to Switzerland in 2017, where he currently studies at the Hochschule für Musik in Basel with Claudio Martinez Mehner and Zoltán Fejérvári. He has won awards at several major piano international competitions, such as the Città di Cantù International Piano and Orchestra Competition, International Horowitz Competition, and Orpheus Chamber Music Competition. His debut CD was released by the KNS Classical label in 2022.

His concert activity as a soloist, recitalist, and chamber collaborator has led him across Europe, where he performed at prestigious festivals, including the Gstaad Menuhin, Wien Modern, ArtDialog, 100% Classique, and SOLSberg Festivals. Aside from the standard piano repertoire, he enjoys exploring the fields of historical performance, contemporary music, and jazz. In 2021, he took part in several jazz projects, as well as two operas by contemporary American composers Du Yun and Michael Hersch.

He sees his participation in the Cliburn as a “singular opportunity to try myself on the highest level and to compete with the best musicians of my generation.” More than that, though, he says: “For several reasons since my very childhood, I was imagining myself playing in this particular competition and had a feeling that it could be a life-changing event for me as a musician.”


Preliminary Round

RAMEAU “L’Entretien des Muses,” “Les tourbillons,” and “La joyeuse” from Suite in D Major, RCT 3
KARAMANOV Variations for Piano
HOUGH Fanfare Toccata
RACHMANINOV Sonata No. 2 in B-flat Minor, op. 36 (1931)

Quarterfinal Round

SCHUMANN Symphonic Etudes, op. 13
SCRIABIN Sonata No. 5, op. 53
LIGETI Etude No. 13 “L’escalier du diable”

Semifinal Round – Recital

BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 30 in E Major, op. 109
MEDTNER Sonata in E Minor, op. 25, no. 2 “Night Wind”
BRAHMS Intermezzo in A Major, op. 118, no. 2

Semifinal Round – Mozart concerto

MOZART Piano Concerto No. 27 in B-flat Major, K. 595

Final Round – Concerto I

CHOPIN Piano Concerto No. 2 in F Minor, op. 21

Final Round – Concerto II

PROKOFIEV Piano Concerto No. 2 in G Minor, op. 16