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Acclaimed as a pianist of genius by the Washington Post, the Mexican-American composer/conductor, and pianist, Gustavo Romero has appeared in over 20 countries, performing in Paris, Zurich, Milan, Berlin, Prague, and Johannesburg.
He has been performing as a soloist with renowned orchestras, including the New York Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Boston Pops, Philharmonica Hungarica, Honolulu, and New World Symphonies, English Chamber Orchestra, New Japan Philharmonic and Cape Town Philharmonic.
To his credit is being the winner of Clara Haskil International Piano Competition in Switzerland as well as the Avery Fisher Career Grant, Musical America Young Artist of 1988, Austin, Texas, Key to the City Award, and the Maurice Braun Award of the San Diego Historical Society.
Romero has also graced numerous major festivals including New York's Mostly Mozart Festival, Aspen Music Festival, Eastern Music Festival, and the Montreux Festival in Switzerland.
Romero is one of those who get fame at a very early age. He gave his first public performance as part of the Mini-Concert series at the Athenaeum in 1976 when he was only 11 years old. At 13 he performed with the New York Philharmonic, the Boston Pops Orchestra at 16, and the Los Angeles Philharmonic at 18.
By that time he had established a reputation as an extraordinary and talented pianist. After graduating in 1988 from the Juilliard School of Music, Romero contested and ultimately won the 1989 prestigious Clara Haskil Piano Competition in Switzerland.
This paved his way into Europe. His 1996 recording of the complete Chopin Impromptus earned a Grammy nomination. Other recordings include Isaac Albeniz's Change d'Espagne, a recording of Claude Debussy's Images l el II, and of Domenico Scarlatti's Keyboard Sonatas.
He acquired his master's degree in music in 1997 from the Juilliard School. His traversal of Chopin's complete solo piano works in six sold-out concerts at the Athenaeum Music & Arts Library in La Jolla, California, was one of the most ambitious classical musical events of 1999.
In 2002 Romero joined University of North Texas College of Music as a piano faculty member. Prior to that, he had been on the faculty of the University of Illinois for five years and on the faculty of the Eastern Music Festival in Greensboro, North Carolina for nine years.
The next several years were spent in presenting concert series concentrating on the repertoire of a single composer; in 2002 he concluded a two-year cycle of the entire Beethoven piano sonatas in seven recitals and concerti by Beethoven, Mozart and Haydn conducted from the keyboard. In 2004, he completed a two-year Mozart cycle.
In 2005, he performed a series of Schubert's major piano works at The Athenaeum in La Jolla, Calif. The audience leaped to their feet cheering as the ambitious pianist brought his one-man Schubert series to a conclusion in the final concert. Romero gets high marks for taste, ambition, sensitivity, poetic insight, dynamic control, and generosity of spirit.
The entire Schubert project - a whole month of keyboard masterpieces, some of them rarely heard - were a thoroughly commendable, and thoroughly novel adventure. He was also featured on National Public Radio's Performance Today in 2005
Since 1999, Romero has been performing his cycles, devoted to specific composers, for which he is now widely known at the Athenaeum Summer Festival in La Jolla. Because Gustavo had memorized all of Chopins music, Erika Torri saw the opportunity to create a signature event to commemorate the librarys 100th anniversary.
Following the Athenaeum anniversary performance, Gustavo took his ambitious Chopin series to New Yorks Alice Tully Hall, where he headlined a three-hour marathon, featuring over two dozen American pianists and honoring Chopin's 150th anniversary.
All these performances received numerous critical accolades, including the Los Angeles Times, which stated, Romero showed an easy musicality, solid technical resources, a joy in illuminating miniatures and an unfeigned authority in this music -- in short, strong rapport with the poetic and lyric elements in the composer's art. The series was also recorded for national broadcast on National Public Radio's Performance Today.
In 2006, Romero performed piano concerti of Mozart in San Diego, conducting from the keyboard, and Mozart duo-piano recitals in Venice and Vicenza, Italy, with Massimo Somenzi. So far, he has presented the works of Chopin, Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, Schumann, and Schubert.
In 2007 he presented piano solo and chamber music of Brahms in a seven-part concert series at the Athenaeum Summer Festival in La Jolla. During the debut performances, Romero also lectures on the artists at the University of California, San Diego.
In February, 2008 Romero returned to the McCallum Theatre in Palm Desert, California for the second performance in the first year of a multi-year cycle featuring all of the piano sonatas of Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827).
Featured on the program were Sonata in C minor, Opus 10, No.1, Sonata in G Major, Opus 79, Sonata in A Major, Opus 2, No.2, Sonata in A Flat Major, Opus 110, and Sonata No. 21 in C Major, Opus 53, the legendary Waldstein sonata.