Adapted from the web site of Victorian College of the Arts School of Music, University of Melbourne
American pianist Donna Coleman is recognized by audiences, foundations and critics alike as one of the world's pre-eminent interpreters of the music of our time. The recipient of numerous awards, including the Solo Recitalist Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Solo Recitalist Fellowship from the Pennsylvania Council of the Arts, a Fullbright Senior Scholar Fellowship for touring in Australia, three Rockefeller Foundation Grants for touring in the United States, Second Prize in the John F. Kennedy Center/Rockefeller Foundation International American Music Competition, two Grand Prizes and Medals in the National Guild of Piano Teachers' International Piano Recording Competition, a Bunting Fellowship from Radcliffe College, and an Australia Council Grant to commission a new work from Australian composer Mark Pollard, she has also been a Touring Artist for the North Carolina Arts Council and for the Southern Arts Federation.
Her recordings for Etcetera Records of the piano music of Charles Ives have received awards and accolades from around the world, and her latest compact disc on ABC Classics entitled Rags to Riches: A Syncopated Century was the Editor's Choice in Soundscapes magazine for February 1997. Notable performance venues include The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Alice Tully Hall and Merkin Hall in New York City, Wigmore Hall in London, the Melbourne Concert Hall where she performed George Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra in February 1998, the Sydney Town Hall where she appeared as solo pianist in the Australian premiere of Charles Ives's Symphony No. 4 in May 1995, and several direct broadcasts for ABC-FM, including her September 1996 live-to-air performance of Charles Ives's "Concord" Sonata declared by The Sydney Morning Herald's Roger Covell to be "certainly one of the outstanding events in Sydney music this year."
"This Second Pianoforte Sonata [by Charles Ives] . . . finds here its most convincing recorded version [Etcetera Records KTC 1079], due to its assertion, the assurance in its manner of effectively carrying out each detail, its analytical finesse." Christian Tarting, Diapason (Paris, February 1990) recipient of the "Diapason d'Or."
"Donna Coleman's performance of Ives's First Sonata [on Etcetera Records KTC 1147] is grand and sweeping, strong and confident, filled with charm and overflowing with joy. It immediately becomes my preferred version." James H. North, Fanfare Magazine (USA 1993).
"Genuinely inspired." The London Times (1984).