Antti Siirala Biography (Wikipedia)
Antti Aleksi Siirala (born 16 May 1979 in Helsinki) is a Finnish pianist.
Antti Siirala's international career was launched when he won First Prize in the 10th Vienna Beethoven competition as the youngest contestant, receiving the special award for the best performance of a late Beethoven sonata (op. 106 “Hammerklavier”). Subsequently, he was awarded First Prize in the London International Piano Competition 2000, the Dublin International Piano Competition (with unanimous jury votes and a special prize for the best Mozart performance) and the Leeds International Piano Competition in 2003 (and the audience prize voted by viewers and listeners to the BBC broadcasts and the live audience in Leeds Town Hall).
Siirala's debut in Brussels in December 2004 was a matchless success. Due to illness the conductor had to cancel on very short notice. Siirala agreed to lead the orchestra from the piano and saved the whole concert by playing in the second half Beethoven's Diabelli variations in place of the orchestra. Immediately he was re-invited for concerts with the Orchestre National and for a recital by the Palais des Beaux Arts.