Lauded as “exquisite” by The Philadelphia Inquirerand “a pianist of sterling artistry” by Gramophone, MICHELLE CANN has become one of the most sought-after pianists of her generation. She made her debut with The Philadelphia Orchestra in 2021 and has recently performed concertos with The Cleveland Orchestra, the National Symphony Orchestra, the OrquestraSinfônica Municipal de São Paulo, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the symphony orchestras of Atlanta, Baltimore, and Cincinnati.
Highlights of Cann’s 2023-24 season include appearances with the Charlotte, Hawaii, Indianapolis, Québec, Sarasota, and Winnipeg symphony orchestras, and recitals in New York City, Portland, Berkeley, Beverly Hills, Flagstaff, and Denver. She also has teaching and performance residencies at the University of Indiana South Bend and Meany Center for the Performing Arts at the University of Washington.
Recognized as a leading interpreter of the piano music of Florence Price, Cann performed the New York City premiere of Price’s Piano Concerto in One Movementwith The Dream Unfinished Orchestra in July 2016 and the Philadelphia premiere with The Philadelphia Orchestra and Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin in February 2021. Her recording of the concerto with the New York Youth Symphony won a Grammy Award in 2023 for Best Orchestral Performance. Her acclaimed debut solo album Revival, featuring music by Price and Margaret Bonds, was released in May 2023 on the Curtis Studio label. She has also recorded two Price piano quintets with the Catalyst Quartet.
Cann was the recipient of the 2022 Sphinx Medal of Excellence, the highest honor bestowed by the Sphinx Organization. She also received the Cleveland Institute of Music’s 2022 Alumni Achievement Award and the 2022 Andrew Wolf Chamber Music Award.
A celebrated chamber musician, Cann has collaborated with leading artists including the Catalyst, Dover, and Juilliard string quartets, violinists Timothy and Nikki Chooi, and cellist Thomas Mesa. She has appeared as co-host and collaborative pianist with NPR’s From The Top, collaborating with actor/conductor Damon Gupton, violinist Leila Josefowicz, and violinist and MacArthur Fellow Vijay Gupta. Cann’s numerous media appearances include PBS Great Performances’ Now Hear Thishosted by Scott Yoo and Living the Classical Lifewith host Zsolt Bognár.
Embracing a dual role as performer and pedagogue, Cann is frequently invited to teach master classes, give lecture-demonstrations, and lead teaching residencies. Recent residencies include the Gilmore International Keyboard Festival and the National Conference of the Music Teachers National Association. She has recorded lessons for tonebase, the popular piano lessonplatform. She has also served on the juries of the Cleveland International Piano Competition, the Kauffman Music Center International Youth Piano Competition, and the piano competition of the Music Academy of the West.
A staunch believer in community-building through music, Cannhas servedas the director of two children’s choruses in theEl Sistema-inspired program Play On Philly and was part of the inaugural class of ArtistYear fellows at the Curtis Institute of Music. Through ArtistYear, she worked with community partners City Year, Teach for America, and AmeriCorps to provide arts education and access to underserved communities in Philadelphia.
Cann holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in piano performance from the Cleveland Institute of Music, where she studied with Paul Schenly and Dr. Daniel Shapiro, and an Artist’s Diploma from the Curtis Institute of Music, where she studied with Robert McDonald. She joined the Curtis piano faculty in 2020 as the inaugural Eleanor Sokoloff Chair in Piano Studies. She joined the piano faculty of the Manhattan School of Music in 2023.
Follow Michelle Cann on Instagram: @michelleacann