Born in Montreal, Gabriel Quenneville-Bélair is a French Canadian pianist who regularly performs in North America, giving solo and chamber recitals, along with lectures on pianism. Known for his tireless energy, secure technique and solid focus, critics have greatly complimented his powerful and rich sound, and his consistently clear sense of form, structure and polyphony. Also a fierce defender of contemporary music, Gabriel has premiered numerous works by living composers, including some dedicated directly to him.
In recent seasons, Gabriel has performed Tchaikovsky’s Concerto No. 1 in B-flat minor with KSO, OSI, OPMEM, and the University of Minnesota Orchestra, as the winner of the 2016 University of Minnesota Concerto Competition. Some of his performances have also been broadcast on Radio Ville-Marie, Minnesota Public Radio, Baby Blue Arts and Pulsar. Besides his professional appearances, he has frequently won top prizes and scholarships in different competitions and performed for festivals both in Canada and United-States. Recent performances include a lecture-recital on Russian Piano Repertoire for the Minneapolis Music Teacher Association in Minnesota, USA, and a recital and masterclass for the Musicians’ Association of Tai’an, China. He has received the Centennial Fellowship at the University of Minnesota, the Gilles-Gauthier Scholarship for the best academic profile of the Conservatoire de musique de Montréal, several different scholarships from Orford Art Center, along with ten different scholarships from the Fondation de soutien aux arts de Laval.
As the winner of the 2016 Claude F. Lefebvre Scholarship of the Fondation de soutien aux arts de Laval, he will be recording a CD dedicated to Russian and Canadian piano music this year.
Gabriel Quenneville-Bélair holds a Doctor of Musical Arts in Piano Performance with Lydia Artymiw from the University of Minnesota where he worked as a Piano Teaching Assistant for the University of Minnesota from 2013 to 2016, as well as a Master’s Degree in Piano Performance with Richard Raymond from the Conservatoire de musique de Montréal. He also has had in the recent years the opportunity to work in masterclasses and private lessons with several other distinguished pianists such as André Laplante, Benedetto Lupo, Robert Silverman, Marc Durand, Raoul Sosa, Ksenia Nosikova, Kyoko Hashimoto, Jean Saulnier, Suzanne Blondin, Esther Gonthier and Olivier Godin.
In addition to his career as pianist, Gabriel Quenneville-Bélair is a gifted actor. His recent performance as Lillas Pastia in all three casts of the University of Minnesota’s Fall 2014 rendition of La Tragédie de Carmen by Georges Bizet was received with spontaneous and enthusiastic cheers.