Wolfgang Manz, born in 1960, is prizewinner of many prestigious international piano competitions such as Leeds (1981) and Brussels (Concours Reine Elisabeth, 1983), the first time that a German pianist won 2nd prizes in these competitions, furthermore winner of the Mendelssohn-Bartholdy – Prize Berlin 1980, 2nd prize at the National German Music Competition in Bonn 1982 and a jury discretionary award in the 1989 Van Cliburn International Pianoforte Competition in Texas/USA .
Wolfgang Manz has been influenced by two very different traditions: His basic pianistic education he received by the Czech pianist Drahomir Toman, a representative of the Eastern European school originating from Theodor Leschetizky, whereas he adapted elements of the German tradition at the renowned University of Music at Hanover in the class of Prof. Karlheinz Kämmerling.
Since his success at famous competitions Wolfgang Manz has been much in demand as soloist with orchestras, in solo recitals and chamber music. His repertoire includes more than 50 concertos with orchestra and an extensive solo and chamber music programme ranging from Bach to Contemporary Music. In the 80-ies he performed with well-known orchestras and conductors, particularly with British orchestras as the English Chamber, Royal Philharmonic and BBC Symphony Orchestra (appearance at the London “Prom” concerts 1984 with Brahms 1st piano concerto).
In Germany Manz was soloist with the Radio Symphony Orchestra Berlin, the „Radiophilharmonie“ Hanover, the “Orchestra of the Beethovenhalle” Bonn, the Düsseldorf Symphony and the Munich Chamber Orchestra. Concert tours took him to cultural centres such as Cologne (Philharmonie), Berlin (Philharmonie), Hamburg (Laeiz-Hall), Munich (Herkulessaal), Salzburg (Festspielhaus), Frankfurt (Alte Oper), Brussels (Palais des Beaux-Arts), London (South Bank), Amsterdam (Concertgebouw), Tokyo (Suntory Hall), Moscow (Conservatory), Santiago de Chile (Teatro municipal). A couple of CD productions with Wolfgang Manz are currently available on the market : ARTE NOVA (Brahms piano concertos), CHANDOS Records (Dohnanyi piano quintet with the Gabrieli string quartet) and TELOS Records (Brahms late piano pieces and concertos for piano and orchestra, solo recital with Schumann, Liszt, Debussy)
Apart from his career as soloist Wolfgang Manz has gained much recognition as pedagogue. He has given masterclasses in Germany, Belgium, Austria and South Corea. From 1994-1998 Manz held a teaching position at the University of Music at Karlsruhe. In 2000 Manz was guest professor at the Ferris – University in Yokohama / Japan for one term. In the same year he was appointed ordinary professor for piano at the University of Music Nürnberg-Augsburg (from 2008 changed to Stately University of Music Nürnberg). Since that time Manz has been soloist with German orchestras in Nuremberg, Rostock, Göttingen, Halle, Baden-Baden and Bielefeld. In 2005 he was soloist at the renowned „Festival d´Echternach“ in Luxemburg with Mendelssohn`s 1st piano concerto.
Wolfgang Manz is recently sought after as jury member in national and international piano competitions, for example at the German National Music Competition in Bonn (2001), at the Walter Gieseking piano competition in Saarbrücken (2007), at the International Competition for Young Pianists Ettlingen (2006 und 2010), at the Rachmaninow competitions in Moscow and Darmstadt (2008), and at the 2009 and 2011 Georges Enescu – Competitions in Bucarest. Many of his former students have won major prizes at international piano competitions such as Leeds, Hongkong Rhodes International Competition ,“Tomassoni”/ Cologne, Luis Sigall / Chile, Porto and Vienna Beethoven Competition, and Cleveland 2011.