Ivo Kahánek — a graduate of the Janáček Conservatory in Ostrava, where he attended the class of Marta Toaderová, and the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague, under Ivan Klánský, Ivo Kahánek also studied for one semester at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London under Ronan O’Hora and attended master classes led by Karl-Heinz Kämmerling, Christian Zacharias, Alicia de Larocha, Imogen Cooper, Peter Frankl and many others. Before winning the 2004 Prague Spring International Music Competition, he had garnered accolades at other prestigious international competitions (Maria Canals Piano Competition in Barcelona, Vendome Prize in Vienna, Stiftung Tomassoni Wettbewerb in Cologne, Fryderyk Chopin International Piano Competition in Mariánské Lázně, Concertino Praga, etc.).
Following his successful debuts at the Beethovenfest Bonn and the Prague Spring, he was invited to the BBC Proms, where in August 2007 he performed Bohuslav Martinů’s Piano Concerto No. 4, „Incantation“, with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Jiří Bělohlávek. The concert was broadcast by BBC Radio 3, BBC Television and Czech Radio Vltava. In 2014, he was invited by Sir Simon Rattle to give two performances opposite the Berliner Philharmoniker. Ivo Kahánek has regularly collaborated with the Czech Philharmonic and has given acclaimed concerts with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, the Wiener Symphoniker, the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, the Bamberger Symphoniker, the Essener Philharmoniker, the WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln, the Zürcher Kammerorchester, the Prague Symphony Orchestra, the Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra, PKF Prague Philharmonia, the Brno Philharmonic and other orchestras.
In 2008, he recorded for the Supraphon label an album with pieces by Leoš Janáček, Bohuslav Martinů and Miloslav Kabeláč, which received the highest possible rating in the magazines Classics Today (USA), Le Monde de la Musique (France) and Fanfare (USA). His subsequent recordings are dedicated to music by Fryderyk Chopin (Sonata in B minor, Four Scherzi) and Viktor Kalabis (the complete works for piano, sonatas). His most recent album, featuring Antonín Dvořák’s Piano Concerto, made with the Bamberger Symphoniker conducted by Jakub Hrůša, has deservedly gained critical acclaim. It has won the coveted BBC Music Magazine Concerto Award, been voted BBC Radio 3’s Disc of the Week and received the French accolade Choc de Classica.