“Owing to its perfection, the Steinway gives the pianist, wherever he plays, absolute security.” March 15, 1979
Pierre-Laurent Aimard is one of the leading pianists associated with the mainstream European avant-garde of the last third of the twentieth century and the early twenty-first century. His teacher at the Paris Conservatory was Yvonne Loriod, wife of the composer and theory teacher Olivier Messiaen. Aimard's studies with Loriod gave him a close association with Messiaen, resulting in Aimard becoming a leading interpreter of Messiaen's piano music.
In 1973, Aimard won first prize at the Olivier Messiaen International Competition, and shortly thereafter began his international concert career. His recitals were noted for their evenly balanced emphasis on traditional repertoire and the newest music, often illuminating similarities and links between them.
In 1976, Pierre Boulez established the Ensemble Intercontemporain, one of the leading avant-garde ensembles in the world, and invited Aimard to become its regular pianist. Aimard accepted, remaining in that position for eighteen years.
Upon leaving the Ensemble Intercontemporain, he organized several highly successful concert series, the first called "Piano in the 20th Century." In the course of its eight concerts, he presented 24 works in diverse twentieth-century styles. Others included one devoted to duet performances, another traced the influence of Johann Sebastian Bach over the centuries, and a third explored music in time, combining ancient music, ethnic music forms, classical music, and film music.
Aimard has been a Steinway Artist since 1979.