Thrust into the international spotlight when she made it to the finals of the prestigious Leeds International Piano Competition in 1978 at the tender age of 20, English pianist Kathryn Stott has managed to live up to the expectations placed on her by a grateful motherland. Stott was born in Nelson, England, two weeks before Christmas 1958 and as a child attended the Yehudi Menuhin School, where, in addition to instruction from the school's regular faculty, she had the opportunity to take lessons from Nadia Boulanger. In the years leading up to her Leeds success she worked under Kendall Taylor at the Royal College of Music. During 1980s and 1990s she made her talents available to audiences around the globe, making concerto, recital, and chamber music appearances in Britain, the United States, Germany, France, Austria, Italy, Spain, Japan, Switzerland, and elsewhere.
Stott has made a special effort to include the British literature in her own repertoire; she certainly must be counted amongst the best interpreters ever of Frank Bridge's music, and also a key exponent of William Walton's piano music. Sir Peter Maxwell Davies composed his 1997 Concerto for piano especially for her. She has also been a passionate champion of Gabriel Fauré's music, and in 1995 served as artistic director of an international festival in celebration of that unique French musician — an activity which earned for her the honor of being appointed Chevalier dans l'Ordre des Arts et Lettres by the French authorities. Recordings of Kathryn Stott are plentiful and appear under many labels, including Decca, EMI, Philips, and Hyperion. A collaboration with Yo-Yo Ma, The Soul of the Tango, was released in 1997 by Sony Music.