Meadows School of the Arts 2022
Joaquin Achúcarro, professor of piano, joined SMU in 1989, when he was named the Joel Estes Tate Chair in piano. His professional career began after he won the 1959 Liverpool International Competition and the debuted with the London Symphony Orchestra. Achúcarro has performed in 61 countries with 208 orchestras, including the Berlin, New York, London, Chicago, Los Angeles, Cincinnati, Dallas, Montreal, BBC, Hallé, City of Birmingham, Liverpool, Royal Scottish, National de France, RTE Ireland, Tokyo, Yomiuri, Western Australia, RIAS Berlin, Hamburg, Stuttgart, Düsseldorf, La Scala, Sta Cecilia Roma, Chile, Mexico, Colombia, Venezuela and Nacional de España orchestras. He has played with an impressive list of 366 conductors. In his home country, Spain, he has achieved the two highest honors in the Arts: in 1992 the Spanish Government awarded him the Premio Nacional de Música, and in 1996 he was knighted by King Juan Carlos with the Gold Medal of Fine Arts. UNESCO named him "Artist for Peace 2000" in recognition of his "extraordinary artistic achievement", and in 2003 he received the Great Cross of Civil Merit from His Majesty King Juan Carlos. His students at SMU have won 16 international first prizes and several second prizes, and many of them are already performing and teaching around the world. Achúcarro has numerous recordings to his credit.