Ivan Sokolov, a Russian pianist, composer, and educator, has established himself as a leading figure of the Russian music scene for over three decades. An insightful interpreter and dazzling performer of baroque, classical, and romantic repertoire, Sokolov is also an internationally acclaimed champion of new music and rarely heard works. His close collaborations with composers such as E. Denisov, S. Gubaidulina, N. Sidelnikov, A. Schnittke, G. Ustvolskaya, V. Silvestrov, A. Vustin, N. Korndorf, A. Raskatov, etc. have resulted in Sokolov’s numerous world premieres of their works, as well as in other major projects (e.g., recording the complete Piano Sonatas and Preludes by Ustvolskaya under the Triton label).
Sokolov is widely recognized as a groundbreaking artist who introduced Russian audiences to the Western European and American avant-garde composers K. Stockhausen, P. Boulez, G. Crumb, J. Cage, M. Feldman, etc. Furthermore, he was among the founders and major performers at the famous Alternativa new music festival held in Moscow at the start of the perestroika. Now, he regularly appears in other festivals including Moscow Autumn, December Nights, A. Sakharov International Art Festival, International Diaghilev Festival (Russia), Schleswig-Holstein Musikfestival, Frankfurter Feste (Germany), Luezerner Festwoche (Switzerland), and Icebreaker (USA).
Sokolov has performed with distinguished artists such as pianists Martha Argerich and Alexei Lubimov, violinists Tatiana Grindenko, Daniel Hope, and Patricia Kopatchinskaja, cellists Natalya Gutman and Alexander Ivashkin, and conductors Gennady Rozhdestvensky, Alexander Lazarev, and Andrey Boreyko. He graduated from the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory, where his primary teachers were Lev Naumov (piano) and Nikolai Sidelnikov (composition).
Ivan Sokolov’s own music is performed in Russia and beyond. Possessing a striking ability to compose in different styles, he constantly searches for a unique stylistic approach that reveals the deepest semantic level of music. He has written one opera, two instrumental theater pieces, more than twenty chamber music works, over ten pieces for the percussion ensemble, about two hundred songs, and music for choir, vocal ensembles, piano, and other solo instruments.
As an educator, Ivan Sokolov is a faculty member of the Russian Gnesins Academy of Music and the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory. There he teaches a highly demanded course called Study of Musical Content, which is closely linked with his own intensive compositional work. Moreover, he teaches 20th and 21st century piano music at the Department of Historic and Contemporary Performance.
Ivan is a regular guest at the Moscow Radio broadcast programs. He has a number of music research publications.