Piano great Maurizio Pollini dies at 82

Pianist Maurizio Pollini, who has been regarded as one of the finest musicians of the world, passed away on Saturday. He was 82.

The acclaimed pianist was born in Milan, Italy, where he studied music.

Pollini won the International Chopin Piano Competition in 1960.

The first prize was awarded to him unanimously.
At that time, the president of the jury, reportedly said that the 18-year-old pianist "plays better than any of us."

His career spanned decades covering various parts of the world including Europe and the United States.

He has been known for his mastery of technique and exceptional performances.

Since his debut in Japan in 1974, Pollini visited the country many times. He was known for his love of traditional Japanese culture such as Ukiyo-e and lacquer ware.

He received the Praemium Imperiale Award from the Japan Art Association in 2010.

Local news media say that Pollini has not been well in recent years which forced him to cancel concerts.

La Scala opera house in Milan where he has played more than 160 times issued a statement on Saturday.

It called him an "absolute protagonist of the international concert scene."

It added that he was "a performer capable of revolutionizing the perception of authors such as Chopin, Debussy and Beethoven."