Wael Farouk

“A formidable and magnificent pianist.”

- the New York Concert Review

Introducing Wael Farouk's Premiere
2-CD set Russian Portraits.
Available now on Carlock Records!

“Wael Farouk's all-Russian two-CD set gives us familiar repertoire played with a new light and freshness. Here is piano playing that brings chills to the flesh, performed with a rare virtuoso technique.”

David Dubal, faculty at the Julliard School and author of The Art of the Piano


Upcoming Performances


Major Piano Works of Franz Liszt (10-recital series)

Chicago—Ganz Recital Hall, Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University

  • “Liszt the Original” (works include the B Minor Sonata, the Two Legends, and Mephisto Waltz)
  • September 12, 2015 at 7:30 p.m.
  • “Liszt the Patriot I” (works include the complete Hungarian Rhapsodies, 1-9)
  • September 26, 2015 at 7:30 p.m.
  • “Liszt the Patriot II” (works include the complete Hungarian Rhapsodies, 10-16, and Funerailles in memory of the failed Hungarian uprising of 1848)
  • October 10, 2015 at 7:30 p.m.
  • “Liszt the Poet and Painter” (works include selections from Annee de Pelerinage)
  • October 24, 2015 at 7:30 p.m.
  • “Liszt the Virtuoso I” (works include the complete Transcendental Etudes)
  • November 21, 2015 at 7:30 p.m.
  • “Liszt the Virtuoso II” (works include the complete Paganini Etudes and Concert Etudes)
  • January 23, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.
  • “Liszt at the Salon” (works include songs transcriptions of Schubert, Chopin, and Schumann)
  • February 6, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.
  • “Liszt at the Opera” (works include opera transcriptions of Wagner, Verdi, Mozart, and Bellini)
  • February 20, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.
  • “Liszt at the Symphony I” (works include transcriptions of Beethoven Symphony No. 5 and Berlioz Symphony Fantastique)
  • April 23, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.
  • “Liszt at the Symphony II” (works include the transcription of Beethoven Symphony No. 9)
  • May 7, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.

    Prokofiev Piano Concerto No. 1 in D-flat

      Munster, Indiana—the Auditorium at Bethel Church

      Northwest Indiana Symphony Orchestra with Kirk Muspratt, conductor

      February 12, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.

    Solo Recital

      Birmingham, Alabama—Samford School of the Arts

      February 26, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.


    Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 1 in F-sharp Minor

      Cairo, Egypt—Cairo Opera House

      Cairo Symphony Orchestra with Ahmed El-Saidi, conductor

      May 14, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.


    Biography

    Hailed as “a formidable and magnificent pianist” by the New York Concert Review, Egyptian-born pianist Dr. Wael Farouk has had an extensive worldwide performing career. With a vast repertoire spanning from Rameau to Bolcom, he commands more than 70 concertos and 60 solo programs, including the complete piano works of J. S. Bach, Brahms, Chopin, and Rachmaninoff, as well as the complete piano sonatas of Beethoven, Scriabin, and Prokofiev.

    He has appeared as a soloist and recitalist on five continents and has given the Egyptian premieres of the Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 3, Brahms Piano Concerto No. 2, and Prokofiev Piano Concertos Nos. 1, 2, and 3.

    Farouk made his Carnegie Hall solo debut in June 2013, which received rave reviews as “absolutely masterful playing.” The recital also inaugurated his five-recital cycle performances of the complete solo piano works of Rachmaninoff, which the Chicago Tribune described as “historical.” His solo album Russian Portraits was released on the Carlock Records label in 2013.

    In the 2015-2016 season, Farouk will be giving a ten-recital cycle of the major works of Franz Liszt, covering the complete Transcendental Etudes, complete Concert Etudes, complete Hungarian Rhapsodies, Beethoven and Berlioz symphonic transcriptions, and numerous opera and song transcriptions.

    Farouk has performed with numerous conductors, including Christoph Mueller, Steven Lloyd, Patrick Fournilier, and Philippe Entremont. He has toured England, Russia, Italy, France, Spain, Hungary, Germany, Czech Republic, Colombia, and Japan, including venues such as the White Hall in St. Petersburg, the Kurt Masur Hall at the Johann Sebastian Bach Music School in Leipzig, and Schumann’s house. In 2004, Farouk was given the honor of playing on Tchaikovsky’s piano—the first pianist to do so since Vladimir Horowitz.

    Farouk’s career was born out of adversity. Despite receiving the highest scores on his entrance exams at the Cairo Conservatory, he originally was turned away due his small stature and an unusual hand condition that prevents him from making a fist or straightening his fingers. Admitted for a trial period at the age of seven, Farouk overcame all odds and eventually became one of the conservatory’s most accomplished graduates.

    At the Cairo Conservatory, Farouk studied with Samir Aziz, Vselod Demidov, and Edgar Davelienadze. Farouk began his graduate studies in the United States at the Catholic University of America, where he studied on a Fulbright Fellowship with Marilyn Neeley. He earned his Masters of Music from Converse College (studying with Doug Weeks), Professional Studies Diploma from Manhattan School of Music (studying with Solomon Mikowsky) as recipient of the coveted Elva van Gelder Memorial Scholarship, Artist Diploma from Chicago School of Performing Arts (also with Dr. Mikowsky), and Doctor of Musical Arts from Rutgers University (studying with Daniel Epstein), where he was a recipient of the prestigious Ralph Johnson Bunche Distinguished Graduate Award.

    Farouk is on the faculty of the Chicago College of the Performing Arts at Roosevelt University.


    Concert Reviews, Articles, and Past Performances

  • April 6, 2024 - "Slight of Hands" profile on front page of Chicago Tribune
  • April 6, 2014 - Chicago Tribune video, Wael Farouk: Piano Virtuoso
  • June 1, 2013 - Wael Farouk, piano; Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, New York, N.Y.
  • May 19, 2012 - New York Concert Artists and Associates Winners Evening: Evenings of Piano Concerti in Review
  • September 2000 - A helping hand
  • May 2000 - Wael Farouk: Mountain madness
  • April 2000 - A touch of the devil
  • Past Performances

  • Repertoire


    Contact Information

    Wael Farouk
    pianist@waelfarouk.com