Hailed by the critics for his elegant playing (The New York Times) and for his unfaltering brio (Gramophone), Max Barros has won wide acclaim as one of South America's foremost pianists. Born in California and raised in Brazil, Mr. Barros was presented with the "Soloist of the Year" Award (1985) by the São Paulo Music Critics Association for his performance of Brahms’ Piano Concerto in D minor with the São Paulo Symphony Orchestra. He has performed with the main symphony orchestras in Brazil under conductors Eleazar de Carvalho, Roberto Tibiriçá, Diogo Pacheco, Julio Medaglia, Carlos Moreno, Ira Levin, and Cristopher Zimmerman, among others. A dedicated champion of Brazilian music, Mr. Barros has premiered and recorded several works by the nation's foremost composers, including the North American premiere of Ronaldo Miranda’s Concertino for Piano and Strings. He recorded Amaral Vieira's Piano Quintet with the Ensemble Capriccio and has recorded for Naxos the complete piano concertos by Camargo Guarnieri with conductor Thomas Conlin and the Warsaw Philharmonic, which won the “Discovery Award” from the Diapason magazine in France. Mr. Barros has toured South America with the Virtuosi di Praga and has been a guest artist with the American String Quartet, Enso String Quartet, Quartetto di Venezia, Biava String Quartet, Esher String Quartet, and the St. Luke's Chamber Ensemble. He is well known for his stylistic and historically informed interpretations, and his extensive research into the performance practice of early keyboard instruments has allowed him to bring fresh insights to his performances on the modern piano. Together with Stephanie Chase, he recorded the complete trios of Boccherini and Stephen Storace on period instruments. In 2008, Mr. Barros made his debut at the Caramoor Festival performing Guarnieri's Concertino for piano and orchestra with the St. Luke's Orchestra under Michael Barrett. He has recently recorded Guarnieri’s complete Ponteios for Naxos and is in the process of recording the composer’s complete solo piano music in six volumes. The first volume of the series was chosen “CD of the Week” by the KDFC Classical Music Station in San Francisco for the week of 21 January 2013.
For the past twelve seasons, Mr. Barros has been the co-artistic director of the Ensemble for the Romantic Century (ERC), an organization that creates unique productions merging dramatic and fully staged scripts with music. The scripts, drawn from historical material that includes letters, diaries, memoirs, newspaper articles, poetry, and literature create an intricate counterpoint to the musical program. Recent productions have included actors Jeremy Irons and Sinéad Cusack with ballet greats Irina Dvorovenko and Maxim Beloserkovsky. Mr. Barros can be heard on ERC’s DVD “The Young Arthur Rubinstein”.
Max Barros is a Steinway artist.