Bio // PUBLICITY PHOTOS // CREDITS

Since her 2004 New York debut at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall, American pianist Heidi Louise Williams has received increasingly wide recognition for her dynamic performances, insightful interpretations, innovative programming and superb technique. Praised by New York critic Harris Goldsmith for her ‘impeccable soloistic authority’ and ‘dazzling performances’, she has appeared in solo and chamber music performances across North America and internationally, winning numerous prizes.  Her engagements have included recitals at Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, the Taiwan National Recital Hall in Taipei, the Kennedy Center, the Chicago Cultural Center, the Brevard Summer Music Festival, the Carmel Sunset Theater in California, the Peabody Conservatory of Music, and festivals in the United States and Europe; and concerto appearances with the Chicago Chamber Orchestra, Oregon Symphony, Southern Illinois Symphony, and Tallahassee Symphony Orchestra among others.  As a La Gesse Fellowship recipient, she performed at the French Embassy in Washington D.C., at Carnegie Hall and on the La Gesse Festival Series in Toulouse, France.  She has given multiple artist residencies featuring master classes and performances in leading conservatories and universities in Taiwan and China.

Her playing has been heard on WFMT Chicago, Classic 99 St. Louis, WQLN Pennsylvania, and KUAT Tucson radio stations, on WWFM Trenton, New Jersey for the David Dubal Show, ‘The Piano Matters’, and on classical radio stations throughout Taiwan and Canada.

Williams is actively involved in the promotion of new music and has worked with many distinguished composers including Ellen Taaffe Zwilich, Ned Rorem, Chen Yi, John Harbison, Augusta Read Thomas, Carlisle Floyd, Daniel Crozier, James Primosch, Robert Sirota, and Frank Stemper. Her 2011 solo debut recording for Albany Records, DRIVE AMERICAN, was named among the top 10 classical albums of 2011 in the Philadelphia City Paper, featured in Fanfare’s 2012 Critics’ Want Lists, and has been described as ‘veritably operatic’, ‘bold yet thoughtful’, ‘unflappable’, ‘provocative and stimulating’ (Fanfare), possessing ‘…the muscularity and poetic power to bring this demanding repertory to life’ (American Record Guide).  Her 2019 Albany Records solo release BEYOND THE SOUND, featuring sonatas by Charles T. Griffes, George Walker, Carlisle Floyd, and Samuel Barber, was selected twice for inclusion in the 2020 Fanfare Critics’ Want Lists, garnering the headline by British music critic Colin Clarke: “Brilliant programming meets performances of fire meets excellent recording meets superb documentation: this is a significant release from all angles.” Philadelphia Critic Peter Burwasser’s review of the album asserts that “Williams gets every measure of the music, with a big, bristling performance filled with a prismatic tonality and surging (yet masterfully controlled) with energy. It was the express intention of Heidi Louise Williams to group pieces by American composers of the 20th century that bridged the grand European traditions with the nascent American art music world. She has succeeded magnificently, and it is especially rewarding that most of this music is, rather inexplicably, relatively unknown.”  The American Record Guide notes: “These are four knotty sonatas – difficult to assimilate and difficult to execute. In each of these Williams asserts herself boldly and with references to the past as well as the future.  There is profundity in this music, and it is not ignored.  Add in generous timing and a Steinway D heard in full glory and you have a recital of uncommon interest.”  Selections of her playing from this repertoire have been published in the Modern Classical American Songbook.


An avid chamber musician, Williams has collaborated with numerous outstanding American and international artists, including the Cavani Quartet, violist Miles Hoffman, violinist Bin Huang, violinist Qian Zhou, clarinetist Eric Mandat, tenor Matthew Chellis, violinist Géza Kapás, cellist Dariusz Skoraczewski, and many others.  Other recording projects include her award-winning 2018 Albany Records release with soprano Mary Mackenzie, VOCALISMS, a 2-disc album devoted to premiere recordings of American Art Songs by Daniel Crozier, John Harbison, James Primosch and Ned Rorem; another album for Albany Records of North and South American cello-piano duos planned for 2021 with cellist Gregory Sauer; and an upcoming release of early Classic period sonatas on Centaur Records with double bassist George Speed.  She has also recorded works for large ensemble and with orchestra for the Naxos and Neos labels.


Recipient of both a 2020 Undergraduate Teaching Award and a 2020 Outstanding Graduate Faculty Mentor Award from Florida State University, Williams joined the FSU College of Music in 2007, after having taught at the Southern Illinois University Carbondale School of Music since 1999.  Her growing roster of graduate and undergraduate students have won prizes regionally, nationally, and internationally in both solo and collaborative contexts, have been accepted to doctoral and artist diploma programs at prestigious institutions such as The Eastman School of Music and The Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and are actively gaining employment in teaching and performing roles both in the U.S. and abroad. Williams completed her BM, MM, and DMA degrees at the Peabody Conservatory of Music in Baltimore, Maryland, where she studied with Ann Schein and coached chamber music with Earl Carlyss, Samuel Sanders, Stephen Kates, and Robert McDonald.  Prior to her studies at Peabody, she studied under William Phemister at the Wheaton College Conservatory of Music, where she later taught in 1999. She is artist-faculty for the MasterWorks Summer Music Festival, festival pianist for the Sunriver Music Festival since 2018, and has also taught and performed at the Interharmony International Music Festival in Italy.  

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credits//

OUTDOOR PHOTOGRAPHY

San Joaquin Valley, California

Courtesy of Andrew Shinn - http://www.shinnphoto.com/

STUDIO HEADSHOTS

Courtesy of John W. Parks IV

RUBY DIAMOND CONCERT HALL PHOTOGRAPHY

Courtesy of Ray Stanyard 

WILD AND CRAZY PIANO ARTWORK

Courtesy of my uncle, California Plein Air Artist Paul Buxman