Ladislav Fančovič (1980) is a Slovak pianist, an old-jazz lover and an enthusiastic saxophonist who is today rightly considered a top representative of the European performing arts and among the most all-round musicians in Czechia and Slovakia.
After finishing his studies at the Bratislava Conservatoire, he continued in studying Piano at the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague (under prof. Marián Lapšanský), at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Vienna (under prof. Wolfgang Watzinger) and at the Academy of Performing Arts in Bratislava (under prof. Marián Lapšanský). As a pianist of extraordinary abilities, he became the prize-winner on many domestic and international competitions, e.g. the International Fryderyk Chopin Piano Competition in Mariánské Lázně (CZ), the International E. Nyiregyhazi Piano Competition (Kraków, PL), the International Johann Nepomuk Hummel Piano Competition in Bratislava and others. His debut CD from 2006, with Liszt’s Sonata in B minor and virtuosic transcriptions of Horowitz and Cziffra as well, caught attention of the professional public with his limitless potential and a wide variety of musical expression. Ladislav Fančovič is today an established soloist and a chamber performer with a discography containing over 20 titles.
As a renowned soloist with repertoire containing over 20 important piano concerts of 18th to 20th century, he regularly performs with many Czech, Slovak and European orchestras among others with PKF – Prague Philharmonia, Slovak Philharmonic, Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra, Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra, Hradec Králové Philharmonic Orchestra, Bohuslav Martinů Philharmonic Orchestra, The Slovak State Philharmonic Košice, Slovak Sinfonietta, Slovak Chamber Orchestra, Zielona Góra Philharmonic, Solistes Européens Luxembourg, Bruno Walter Festival Orchestra, Pressburger Philharmoniker and others. These concert opportunities led to his cooperation with conductors such as Ondrej Lenárd, Vladimír Válek, Friedrich Haider, František Vajnar, Jerzy Swoboda, Leoš Svárovský, Martin Leginus, Kirk Trevor, Justus Franz, Mário Košík, Zbyněk Müller, Jack Martin Händler and others.
In the field of solo piano works, Ladislav Fančovič chooses very demanding and rarely played pieces. His extraordinary technical dispositions allow him to perform and record titles of authors such as Ernö Dohnányi, Leopold Godowsky, Grazyna Baczewicz, August Klughart, Ignaz Lachner, Hugo Kauder or Robert Kahn. His cooperation with violinist Milan Pala has a special place in the work of Ladislav Fančovič. The result of the connection of these two extraordinary performers is a growing series of recordings of complete compositions for violin and piano of world-known authors (Beethoven, Brahms, Grieg, Suchoň, Shostakovich, Bartók) that has gained a recognition of the professional reviewers.
Another pillar in the production of Ladislav Fančovič is Slovak music production. The title Slovak piano sonatas is a premiere recording of works of many contemporary Slovak composers such as Ľubica Čekovská, Vladimír Šarišský, Ilja Zeljenka, Roman Berger and Jevgenij Iršai, with whom Ladislav Fančovič works on a regular basis. The natural result of this creative cooperation is a multitude of piano compositions dedicated to him and lots of chamber projects.
Ladislav Fančovič is a permanent member of chamber ensembles the Hugo Kauder Trio, the Faces Piano Trio and The Berger Trio. Their repertoire is characteristic by a wide scope of authors ranging from classics of 18th and 19th centuries to contemporary music or introducing unknown, forgotten composers and domestic authors. The Berger Trio is named after a Slovak composer Roman Berger, with whom the members of the trio cooperate artistically over an extended period and whose compositions were published in 2015 by NAXOS under the name Berger: Pathetique.
As a pianist who was looking for a musical expression outside of classical music, Ladislav Fančovič materialized his relationship to old jazz by founding his own swing orchestra, the Fats Jazz Band. Under his artistic directory, the Fats Jazz Band performs authentic American, English, German and Slovak music production of the 30s and 40s of the 20th century. Authentic performances of Fats Jazz Band are enriched by a play on original historical instruments form the 30s. The passion for these instruments led Ladislav Fančovič to expand his abilities and play saxophone. In 2014 he founded a saxophone quartet the Saxophone Syncopators with repertoire including original arrangements of ragtime from 1910s to 1920s, classical music composition from the same period, and works of contemporary authors that were composed directly on order of Saxophone Syncopators.