Lee Dionne

Described as “impressive,” (NYTimes) “impeccable,” (Fanfare Magazine), and “entrancing,” (BBC Music Magazine), pianist Lee Dionne leads a career defined by creativity and adventure. His concerts feature exciting, thoughtful programming alongside meaningful engagement with audiences. Based between the US and Australia, Lee performs forty to fifty solo and chamber recitals each year in venues such as Carnegie Hall and the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam.

In 2023 Lee joined flautist Rosie Gallagher in co-founding Hayes Street Studio in Sydney. This new venue for chamber, solo, jazz, and world music has quickly become Sydney’s leading intimate concert space, with weekly performances by Sydney’s most prominent musicians (Kristian Winther, Hamed Sadeghi, Chris Pidcock, Kate Wadey, Andrew Blanch, Anna da Silva Chen, Sarah Young, Rachel Scott, Miles Mullin-Chivers, and others).

Prior to 2023, Lee was the founding pianist of the critically-acclaimed US-based Merz Trio. With Lee, the trio were recipients of the prestigious 2021 Naumburg Award in Chamber Music and top prizewinners of the Fischoff, Chesapeake, and Concert Artists Guild Competitions. The Trio (continued by Lee’s collaborators Brigid Coleridge, violinist, Julia Yang, cellist, and now Amy Yang, pianist) are known for their wide-ranging cross-disciplinary collaborations and innovative arrangements of familiar and forgotten works.

​Other collaborations of Lee’s include concertos with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Bilkent Symphony Orchestra, Phiharmonia Virtuosi, and Yale Symphony Orchestra. As a chamber musician he performs regularly with members of the ACO and has performed with Carnegie Hall’s Ensemble Connect (2016-2018) and NYC-based chamber collective Cantata Profana (2014-2018). He has appeared numerous times at the Yellow Barn Music Festival in Putney, VT (2012-2014, 2022).

Lee’s recordings can be heard on labels MSR Records, Cantaloupe New Music, and Bright Shiny Things. He has performed live on NPR’s Performance Today, WQXR’s Young Artist’s Showcase, Britain’s Classic FM and BBC 3, and Dutch and Portuguese Classical Radio.

Lee has given master classes at the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, Rice University, the Hartt School of Music, Bucknell University, and the University of North Carolina. He gives regular pre-concert talks for Musica Viva and has given performance-based talks at Cornell and Yale Universities. From 2018-2020 Lee co-directed the performance of chamber music seminar at Yale College. In 2020 he served on the faculty of Yellow Barn’s Young Artist Program. Lee teaches privately at Hayes Street Studio and All Hands Piano Academy in Sydney.

In a former life, Lee completed his Doctorate of Musical Arts in Piano Performance at the Yale School of Music (2018) and a Bachelor of Comparative Literature degree from Yale College (2011), At Yale he received prizes that included the Horatio Parker Memorial Award, a Presser Foundation Music Award, the Friedmann Thesis Prize, the Bach Society Prize, and the Bianca Maria Calabresi Prize in Comparative Literature. He also holds a degree in chamber music from the New England Conservatory, and from 2014-2015 spent a year in the soloist program at the in Hannover, Germany (HMTMH) with the generous assistance of a grant from the DAAD.

Lee’s major teachers and influences include pianists Boris Berman, Vivian Weilerstein, Seth Knopp, Matti Raekallio, Wei-Yi Yang, Patricia Zander, and Wilma Machover; harpsichordist Arthur Haas; musicologists Michael Friedmann and Paul Berry; and chamber musicians Donald Weilerstein, Merry Peckham, Kim Kashkashian, Julio Elizalde, Mark Steinberg, Isabel Charisius, Gerhard Schutz, and Alisdair Tate.

Lee performs on a 1976 Japanese Yamaha C7 retrofitted with a CFX action and maintained by Theme and Variations Piano Services. It resides at Hayes Street Studio.