Murray McLachlan


Murray McLachlan is one of Britain’s leading concert pianists. His performances have consistently received outstanding critical acclaim for intelligent and sensitive interpretations and superb technical ability. As head of keyboard at Chetham’s School of Music in Manchester he is also a committed teacher and regularly gives masterclasses around the UK.

He has appeared as concerto soloist with many leading UK orchestras, performing in top concert venues from the north of Scotland to London. His recognition has been far-reaching, bringing many invitations to perform abroad, and his engagements include recitals in the USA and extended tours of the Soviet Union, Germany, Belgium, Holland, Scandinavia and the Far East. In 1997 he was awarded a knighthood by the Order of St John of Jerusalem in recogrnition of his services to music in Malta. On 20 June 2012, he was awared an honorary Doctorate by The University of Dundee in recognition of his services to music and music education.

In the performance of Russian music, Murray McLachlan’s technique and understanding is unrivalled whilst his recordings of Prokofiev, Kabalevsky, Khachaturian and the lesser known Tcherepnin, Weinberg and Myaskovsky have received outstanding reviews. His prolific discography on Olympia, Divine Art and Linn Records embraces rarities such as music by MacCunn and a concerto based on sketches left by Grieg for a second piano concerto. Most recently he recorded a cross-over album with the internationally acclaimed jazz saxophonist Tommy Smith.

Murray McLachlan’s skill and versatility extends throughout the classical repertoire and he has delighted the public and press with performances of all twenty-four Chopin études, the complete Beethoven sonatas and the complete works of Brahms. During the 1997-98 season he undertook a series of fifty Chopin recitals featuring the four Ballades in aid of the Marie Curie Cancer Fund’s Golden Jubilee.

Murray McLachlan is a tireless advocate of contemporary music. In November 1997 his recording of John McLeod’s Piano Music was selected as ‘Record of the Week’ in the Herald. Earlier his recording of ‘Piano Music from Scotland’, featuring music by Ronald Stevenson and Ronald Center was awarded a rosette in the Penguin Guide to Compact Discs. Many composers have specially written works for him, including Michael Parkin, whose Concerto for Piano and Orchestra was first performed by McLachlan during the 1999 Aberystwyth International Music Festival.

During the 1998-99 season he appeared as concerto soloist with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, (Barbican Centre ), Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, (Philharmonic Hall), Halle Orchestra, (Bridgewater Hall), Royal Scottish National Orchestra, (Royal Concert Hall), London Concert Orchestra,(Symphony Hall), Manchester Concert Orchestra,(Bridgewater Hall), the Lakeland Sinfonia and the Moscow Symphony orchestra. He gave the last concerto performance in the Albert Hall of the twentieth century when he played Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue on 31st December 1999, and his Wigmore Hall recital of 4 January 2004, when he presented an incredibly challenging programme of modern music,was a triumph of virtuosity and received the following comments:

“you couldn’t ask for a more bracing musical start to the new year” – The Times.
“thrilling… electrifying… ” – The Scotsman

“Murray McLachlan is a pianist with a virtuoso technique and a sure sense of line. His timing and phrasing are impeccable, and his tone-full but unforced in the powerful passages, gentle and restrained in the more lyrical- is a perpetual delight” – BBC Music Magazine

Murray McLachlan’s home page