The South African pians and teacher, Jill Richards, obtained her Bachelor of Music degree (cum laude) from University of Cape Town; UNISA Performers Licentiate in Music (piano); Associate of the Royal College of Music (piano); Associate of the Royal College of Music (flute); She received her Postgraduate Diploma at the Royal College of Music in London.
Jill Richards is South Africa’s foremost performer of new piano music. She has long been associated with new music groups, workshops and festivals, ranging from the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival to South African events like the annual New Music Indaba and the National Arts festival, where she performs regularly. She is a founder of the “Music Now” project which actively introduces new music to Johannesburg audiences at the exciting Arts on Main venue as well as other performance spaces in the city.
Jill Richards works closely with numerous composers, and has had a large number of works - from solo pieces to concerti - written for her. This includes three sets of études by Kevin Volans, with whom she has also frequently performed as duo partner in Europe and South Africa. She also works frequently with Philip Miller and their collaborations include performances in Central Park in New York, the Barbican in London and the Commonwealth Festival in Melbourne. A notable success was the première of the work Playing with a Cold Head and a Burning Heart at the Arts Alive festival in Johannesburg in September 2010. This year includes the world première of David Kosviner’s concerto Unterwegs, written for her.
Jill Richards has performed and been broadcast in the UK, Europe, North America and Australasia. Notable broadcasts include those by the BBC of the premières of solo and duo works of Kevin Volans. She has released five CD's, including the Grammy-nominated “Cicada” by Volans as well as the complete piano music of Michael Blake.
Jill Richards’ versatility means that she is equally at home with the standard repertoire, both as soloist and chamber musician. Her piano duo partners include Kevin Volans and Liza Joubert and she recently performed at the Messiaen Festival au Pays de la Meije in France with Dimitri Vassilakis from the Ensemble Intercontemporain. She includes in her extensive repertoire music from across the African continent, which she has performed worldwide.
Jill Richards taught piano at the University of the Witwatersrand School of Music; peripatetic flute teacher for the Greater London Council; selected private teaching & coaching;
master-classes at the universities of Cape Town and Durban
Jill Richards is a Steinway Artist.