“I grew up playing my grandmother's 100 year old Steinway upright. That instrument is still the spiritual center of our family's musical legacy.”
A singer-songwriter whose lush, theatrical pop harkens back to the traditions of Tin Pan Alley, cabaret, and even opera, Rufus Wainwright was born in 1973 to folk music luminaries Loudon Wainwright III and Kate McGarrigle. He began his piano studies at age six, and by 13 toured with his mother, his aunt Anna, and his sister Martha as the McGarrigle Sisters and Family. A year later, Wainwright was nominated for a Juno (the Canadian equivalent of a Grammy) as Most Promising Young Artist, while his "I'm A-Runnin'" was concurrently nominated for a Genie (the Canadian counterpart to an Oscar) for Best Song in a Film.
During his adolescent years, Wainwright became an enamored with opera and the performances of Edith Piaf, Al Jolson, and Judy Garland. The 1998 release of the self-titled Rufus Wainwright garnered much critical and popular support, and launched Wainwright’s successful recording career. Recently, Wainwright has shown a preoccupation with the writings of William Shakespeare, which have served as the basis of his two recent projects: All Days are Nights: Songs for Lulu, and Take All my Loves: 9 Shakespeare Sonnets, for which he collaborated with Helena Bonham Carter, Carrie Fisher, William Shatner, Martha Wainwright, and Florence Welch of Florence + the Machine, among several other actors and musicians as well as the BBC Symphony Orchestra.
Wainwright has been a Steinway Artist since 2012.