Jonathan Morris is currently completing a doctorate degree in piano performance at the University of Colorado Boulder College of Music, studying with Dr. Andrew Cooperstock. He received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London as a student of Ronan O’Hora, graduating with classifications of First Class Honours and Distinction, respectively. Born in the Republic of Ireland in 1992, he started receiving piano lessons when he was eight years old and was accepted into the Royal Irish Academy of Music in Dublin at the age of sixteen. During his time there, he was taught by the prestigious Irish pianist Hugh Tinney, who came fifth in the 1987 Leeds International Piano Competition.
Jonathan has been involved with many prominent music festivals worldwide, including the Aspen Music Festival and School in Colorado. He attended Aspen for three consecutive years from 2010 onwards, receiving scholarship aid from many generous supporters, including the Polonsky Foundation in the UK. He attended again in 2015 for the fourth time, studying with Anton Nel, receiving a fellowship covering room and board, tuition, and travel. Jonathan has also taken part in other international music festivals, such as the Clandeboye Festival in Ireland, the Birmingham International Piano Academy in England, and the Astona International Music Academy in Switzerland. He has received tutoring from some of the ﬁnest musicians of this generation, including Richard Goode, Steven Osborne, Julian Martin, James Anagnoson, Philippe Cassard, Peter Donohoe, Cristina Oritz, Jacques Rouvier, Christopher Elton, Barry Douglas, Antti Siirala, and John O’Conor, among others.
Jonathan has received numerous awards in many local, national, and international competitions. During his doctoral degree at CU thus far, he has won first and second prizes in the Honors Concerto Competition and the Bruce Ekstrand Memorial Performance Competition, respectively. These competitions are the largest within the school and are highly competitive, as they are open to all graduate students. Last year, he also received second prize and alternate winner in the Mu Phi Epsilon International Competition, which took place in the Newman Center for the Performing Arts in Denver. In the 2016 ESB Feis Ceoil—Ireland’s leading national music festival—he won the coveted Mabel Swainson Award, while March 2015 marked a win in both the Hamilton Harty Cup and Anthony Glavin Trophy at the Feis. Both of these competitions had previously been won by Jonathan in 2013. Along with these prizes, he came first in the Morris Grant competition, the most prestigious piano award of the festival, winning an award of €2,500. He has also been awarded first prize in the Huban Cup and Patrick Brennan Award of €1,000 and second prize in the Nordell Cup, along with numerous awards in junior Feis competitions, the RIAM music festival, and other Irish music festivals. In the UK, his successes include winning the piano prize of the 2015 Deena Shypitka Music Awards, as well as winning the 2013 Ivan Sutton Chamber Music Award, Guildhall’s pre-eminent chamber music competition, with his piano trio, Trio Amicorum. Jonathan also competed in the 2015 Dublin International Piano Competition, the 8th International Adilia Alieva Piano Competition in France, and the 21st International Piano Competition Rome 2011 in Italy.
Jonathan recently flew to New York to play in Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall, representing CU Boulder in a showcase of some of its most promising young musicians. Earlier this year, he returned to Ireland to play in the inaugural Samuel Beckett Chamber Music Series, which took place in Dublin’s historic Smock Alley Theatre. Last year’s concerts included a performance of Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3 with the CU Symphony Orchestra in Macky Auditorium in November as a result of winning the Honors Concerto Competition. Meanwhile, 2016 included a performance as part of the City of London Festival, a solo concert in Ireland’s National Concert Hall, and a solo concert as part of the New Ross Piano Festival, alongside performers Nicholas Angelich, Piers Lane, and Finghin Collins. During the festival, he also played a four-hand concert with Nathalia Milstein, winner of the 2015 Dublin International Piano Competition. Jonathan has played in many other notable venues, including Wigmore Hall, Abbey Road Studios, the Music Teacher Awards for Excellence Ceremony 2015 (sponsored by Yamaha and organised by Rhinegold Publishing), and the Bishopsgate Institute, as well as several international venues, including the Institut Montana in Switzerland.