Hailed for his “beautiful command of tone and mood…and unrufflable savoir-faire” (San Francisco Chronicle), his “layers of emotional expression” (The Examiner) and his “level of artistry that seem far beyond his years” (Contra Costa Times), Carlos Avila is one of the most in-demand pianists on the classical music scene. His concerts have taken him across North and South America, Europe, and Asia.
Carlos began his professional career in 2001 when he stepped in for an ailing Stewart Goodyear at 24-hours-notice to play the Rachmaninoff First Piano Concerto with the California Symphony – a “pinch-hit homerun” (San Francisco Chronicle).
Since then, Carlos has been a guest at dozens of festivals including Schleswig-Holstein, Tanglewood, Sarasota, Aspen, Banff, Music Academy of the West, Holland Music Sessions, the Heifetz Institute, Atlantic Music Festival, Lake George, ChamberFest Dubuque, and the Carnegie Hall Workshops where he had the opportunity to work and study with Isaac Stern, Daniel Barenboim, and Michael Tilson Thomas among others. Carlos was showcased on New York’s WQXR as a winner of The Juilliard School’s prestigious Gina Bachauer Piano Competition.
Carlos is also an avid collaborator – he shares a 20-year partnership with acclaimed violinist Jay Oh, with whom he has given over 100 recitals across Asia and the United States. These past seasons, he performed in the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s All-Access Chamber Series, the New York Philharmonic’s Leonard Bernstein Salon series, and the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra’s chamber music series. Prior to that, he embarked on a country-wide 29-city tour with award-winning baritone Leon Williams. He has also collaborated with renowned artists such as Noah Bendix-Balgley, Stefan Jackiw, Lawrence Lesser, Tim Eddy, Shmuel Ashkenasi, Joshua Roman, and Zlatomir Fung among others. During the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown, he and cellist Michael Nicolas of Brooklyn Rider recently gave the live-streamed world premiere of a new work by Osvaldo Golijov entitled “Hebreische Milonga”.
He has also made a large part of his musical home in South Korea where he was recently awarded Honorary Ambassadorship of the city of Chuncheon for his work in the chamber music initiative “New York in Chuncheon” and for promoting and supporting national and international activities in the fields of policy, tourism resources, culture, and art – recent concerts have extended to Hong Kong.
Carlos has served on the faculty/staff of The Juilliard School, New York University, The Mannes School of Music, Rutgers University, The Heifetz International Music Institute, The Killington Music Festival, the Orford Music Festival, and the Aspen Music Festival.
A proud Filipino-American, Carlos is a graduate of The Juilliard School where he studied with Jerome Lowenthal. Prior studies include Yale University where he studied with Peter Frankl and Claude Frank. He currently resides in New York City.