János Balázs was born in Budapest in 1988. He started his musical studies at Járdányi Pál Music School, and after less than a year he entered the National Piano Competition in Nyíregyháza that he won. At the age of 13 he was admitted to the Special Talents Group of Franz Liszt Academy of Budapest where he graduated later. He participated at the master classes of Péter Frankl, Dimitri Bashkirov, Marian Lapsansky, Yohoved Kaplinsky. During his studies he won the following piano competitions:

  • 2004 International György Cziffra Piano Competition, Baden bei Wien, Austria, 1st Prize
  • 2005 International Franz Liszt Piano Competition, Pécs, Hungary, 1st Prize
  • 2006 International Lions Piano Competition, Maurach, France, 1st Prize
  • 2010 Nishnihon International Piano Competition, Japan, 1st Prize
  • 2011 International Piano Competition, Aspen, USA, 1st Prize

Two weeks after his return from the USA, he participated at the International Franz Liszt Piano Competition with a completely different repertoire, where he won the third place and the Special Prize for the Most Successeful Competitor. In the same year he played all the piano pieces by Chopin for which he received a Diploma from the Polish government, and in Hungary he received the Junior Prima Prize. Also in 2011 he was asked to be the Head of the Classical Piano Department of the European Roma College of Music in Felsőörs, Hungary, a position that he fulfills ever since.

In the 2013/2014 season he was chosen to be the artist of the season by the ECHO Rising Star. In a one-year tour he played in the most important concert halls of Europe like the Bozar, Konzerthaus, Concertgebouw, Barbican Centre, Palau de Musica etc…

In 2014 he received a life-long membership of the Franz Liszt Society in Pécs for the outstanding interpretation of Liszt’s musical heritage.

In 2014 at the Franz Liszt Academy of  Music he played the most difficult musical pieces of the music literature, like :

  • Balakirev: Islamey op. 18.,
  • Ravel: Gaspard de la Nuit,
  • Schumann: Toccata and Cziffra Transcriptions.

In 2014 at the Budapest Spring Festival he gave an improvisational concert with a violin player.

Balázs received the Franz Liszt Award in 2015, which is the highest-ranking acknowledgement an artist can receive from the Hungarian State. This year he was also awarded the Gramophone Prize.

In 2015 he started his concert series, „3 Faces of János Balázs” at the Franz Liszt Academy of Music and at the Palace of Arts.  During this series he played Bach and Chopin concertos and the 12


Transcendental Etudes by Liszt.

In 2015 and 2016, in the frame of Hungary’s biggest piano concert series he plays with the greatest pianists like Grigorij Sokolov, David Fray, Vadim Kholodenko or Jevgenij Korolijov. He regulary tours in Europe, in the United States and in Asia. In the prevoius years, among others, he played in the following concert halls:

  • London – Barbican Center,
  • Amsterdam– Concertgebouw,
  • Brussels – Bozar.
  • Wien – Konzerthaus,
  • Paris -Cite de la Muisique,
  • Milano – La Scala,
  • Hamburg – Philharmonie,
  • Köln – Philharmonie,
  • Birmingham – Town Hall,
  • Gateshead – The Sage,
  • Stockholms – Konzerthus,
  • Barcelona -Palau de la Musica,
  • Dortmund – Konzerthaus,
  • Luxemburg – Philharmonie,
  • Porto – Casa de Musica ,
  • Lisbon – Gulbenkian Hall.
  • Tokyo – Suntory Hall,
  • Kyoto-Kyoto Concert Hall ,
  • Gifu – Salamance Hall,
  • Nagoya – Aichi Concert Hall,
  • Peking -Grand Theatre Concert Hall,
  • Shanghai – Symphony Hall,
  • Seoul – Arts Center,
  • New York-Yamaha Hall ,
  • Aspen – Tannery Pound
  • Cleveland – Institute of Music.
  • Washington-Hungarian Embassy,
  • Albany – Saint Rose Hall

Among others he was the solist of the following orchestras:

Kodály Youth World Orchestra – Tamás Vásáry, Brussels Philharmonic Orchestra – Roger Bausier, Dortmund Philharmonie – Charles Oliveri-Munroe, Zagreb Radio Orchestra – Kocsár Balázs, Nagoya Symphonic Orchestra – Jukka Iisakkila, Aspen Youth Orschestra – David Mathues.

In order to propagate classical music, he regularly gives introductory concerts to children, with more than 4000 participants so far.

In 2016 he founded the György Cziffra Festival to honour the memory and art of György Cziffra.


The young Hungarian pianist, János Balázs had the honor to interpret the greatest composers and play on Franz Liszt’s refurbished piano in the Scala in Milan. The concert given by János Balázs had a warm reception in the Scala where he played pieces by Verdi, Donizetti and Paganini. Due to its refurbishment,

Liszt’s Stenway piano on which he played in the Scala between 1837 and 1838, now possesses a unique and special tone. Another interesting and remarkable coincidence is the fact that both Liszt and János Balázs was 26 years old when they played on that piano.


The programme János Balázs played in the Scala:

  • Verdi – Liszt: Paraphrase de concert sur Rigoletto
  • Donizetti – Liszt: Réminiscences de Lucia di Lammermoor
  • Paganini – Liszt: La campanella
  • Dubrovay László: Hommage a Fellini
  • Balázs János: Improvisations on Italian Songs


János Balázs’s drive comes with an outstanding technical knowledge and a deep musical understanding. His artistic instincts safely lead him to the highest spheres of professionalism. His music is characterized by a unique approach through which he expresses his individuality. His credo is that music can be born only from the deepest.