Energetic. Rebellious. Piano to reinvigorate the senses.
Jean–Michel Blais is no stranger to going against the grain. The French-Canadian pianist and composer, based in Montreal, strives to create piano-led classical music that won’t blend into the background or (heaven forbid) get confined to study and sleep playlists.
Need to know
Price: From £22
Stage Times: Announced nearer showtime.
Age: Under 14s must be accompanied by an adult.
“I’m good at talking, but I’m not good at expressing what I have inside. Instrumental music allows you to express emotion even more than poetry would.”
Jean-Michel Blais on performing live
Take a listen
Get to know the artist
Blais began playing the organ at age 9, then composing and taking piano lessons. He attended the Trois–Rivières Music Conservatory, training as a classical pianist, but eventually left music to travel and work as a social worker and special needs teacher.
After rediscovering his passion for music, he returned to Montreal where he caught the attention of Toronto–based indie label Arts & Crafts.
Blais’ debut album, ‘Il’ was released in 2016 to critical acclaim, reaching #1 on Billboard’s Classical chart in Canada 14 times and earning a Polaris Music Prize long list nomination. His most recent album ‘aubades’ was released in February 2022 and received positive critical reception. It was longlisted for the 2022 Polaris Music Prize and won the Félix Award for Instrumental Album of the Year.
Blais believes in classical music being accessible. Whether it’s by challenging the status quo or composing music to excite and engage audiences. Blais also has Tourette’s syndrome. And while he almost never experiences tics when performing, he raises awareness about the condition and talks openly about how music has helped him with it.