South African-born, London-based Kristian Bezuidenhout is generally ranked among the leading period-instrument keyboard players of his generation and is perhaps best known for his fortepiano interpretations of music by Mozart. Indeed, and from 2010, he has been involved in a project with the Harmonia Mundi label to record the entire solo keyboard output of the composer, the first two volumes of which have garnered high praise from across the globe. Since Bezuidenhout's repertory also takes in works by Schubert, Schumann, Mendelssohn, and other Romantic-era composers, he has been quite active on the modern piano as well. As a harpsichordist he has delved into an array of works by J.S. Bach, Handel, Vivaldi, Telemann, and many other Baroque composers. Not surprisingly, Bezuidenhout performs regularly with some of the leading early music ensembles, including the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Orchestra of the Eighteenth Century, and the Freiburg Baroque Orchestra. In addition, he is involved in the chamber realm, partnering such artists as violinists Viktoria Mullova and Petra Müllejans. Besides Harmonia Mundi, Bezuidenhout has recorded for DG, Atma Classique, and other major labels.
Kristian Bezuidenhout was born in South Africa in 1979. From age ten he studied in Australia. He had advanced keyboard studies at the Rochester, New York-based Eastman School of Music, where his teachers included Malcolm Bilson, Rebecca Penneys, and Paul O'Dette.
In 2001 Bezuidenhout captured first prize at the Bruges Fortepiano Competition. That same year he made his first recording, a disc of Mozart works on the Fleur de Son label entitled Sturm und Drang. He steadily built a successful career, and for the 2005-2006 season was named the Most Exciting Young Musician by the Dutch Federation of Music and Drama.
Bezuidenhout had a notable year in 2007: he collaborated with tenor Jan Kobow on an acclaimed Atma Classique recording, Schwanengesang, a disc of songs by Schubert and Mendelssohn; and he was given the Erwin Brodky Prize by the Cambridge (Massachusetts) Society for Early Music.
Bezuidenhout was also appearing regularly in concert with Viktoria Mullova and especially Petra Müllejans. With Müllejans Bezuidenhout made an acclaimed 2009 disc of three Mozart sonatas, on Harmonia Mundi. Bezuidenhout's second volume of the complete Mozart keyboard output was issued in 2011 on Harmonia Mundi and offered sonatas K. 330 and K. 457, and other works. Bezuidenhout is on the faculties of the Eastman School of Music and Schola Cantorum in Basel.