The Chinese pianist, Xi Zhai, was born into a family of musicians in the Chinese province of Shanxi. He began playing the piano at the age of 6 and started his studies in 2001 with the distinguished piano teacher Dachun You in Shanghai. In 2002, he gave his first solo recital in his hometown of Taiyuan. After his studies with Dr. Zhe Tang and his graduation at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music in 2009, he moved to Germany where he has studied at the Frankfurt Music University in the master-class of Professor Joachim Volkmann. Several awards, such as the Gold Medal of the Toyama Piano Competition in Shanghai and the Silver Medal of the Asian Music Competition in Hong Kong were the beginning of his international concert career. In October 2013, he was awarded a scholarship of arteMusica for his outstanding musical achievements. Furthermore he participated in numerous master-classes, among others with distinguished artists such as Elizabeth Leonskaja, Sir András Schiff, Paul Badura-Skoda, Professor Helmut Deutsch, Professor Fou Ts'ong, Professor Yehoved Kaplinsky and Professor Arie Vardi.
Xi Zhaiís piano playing is characterized by intense musical expression, extraordinarily cultivated touch, and brilliant technique, which is never used just for its own sake, but it completely serves the exploration of musical content, as intended by the composer. His extensive repertoire ranges from the Baroque and masters of the Classical and Romantic era to contemporary composers. His repertoire for piano and orchestra includes the complete piano concertos by W.A. Mozart, L.v. Beethoven, Johannes Brahms, Frédéric Chopin, as well as works by Haydn, Robert Schumann, Grieg, Tchaikovsky, Sergei Rachmaninov, Dmitri Shostakovich and other composers.
Xi Zhai has performed in some of the most prestigious concert halls, such as in 2009 at the Grand Theatre in Beijing, and since 2011 he has performed several times at the Alte Oper in Frankfurt, where he played for instance J.S. Bachís monumental Goldberg Variations (BWV 988).
Xi Zhai has been featured as soloist with several orchestras in China and in Germany. He has performed with renowned conductors such as Karsten Januschke, Erich Wächter, Elahiu von Erlenbach, Chen Xieyang, Bian Zhushan, Chen Zuohuang, and Fu Renchang.