A commanding and dynamic pianist, Donald Ryan has been called “a music kaleidoscope, sparkling at everything he plays.” This “everything” encompasses the arenas of the classical repertoire, religious/inspirational, and jazz. His virtuosity and amazing gift of improvisation have delighted audiences throughout the U. S. A. He has performed at Carnegie Hall and the Wayne Newton Theater, Las Vegas as well as in England, France, Germany, Austria, Poland, Spain, Switzerland, the Caribbean and South America.
At the 9th International Frederic Chopin Competition (1975) in Warsaw, Poland, Mr. Ryan was both a diplomat and the recipient of the Madeyska award. Since that time, he has performed on three continents as soloist, collaborator and as a featured artist with orchestras. Among the luminaries he has played with are Simon Estes, Henry Mancini, Ralph Carmichael, Red Skelton, Eddie Daniels, Steve Wilkerson, Diahann Carroll, Eileen Farrell, Johnny Desmond, Joe Williams, Andrea Baker, William Warfield, and Leona Mitchell. He has also issued more than a dozen recordings.
A favorite with ragtime audiences, he has appeared at the West Coast Ragtime Festival in Pasadena, CA and was for over a decade an annual featured performer at the Scott Joplin International Ragtime Festival in Sedalia, MO where one reviewer appraised him as “probably the premier performer of ragtime in the formal classical style active on the festival circuit today.”
Donald Ryan has been playing the piano since he was three years old in his birthplace, Trinidad and Tobago, West Indies, and while still in his early teens was the pianist for a weekly, live radio program that reached a major portion of the islands. He has earned music degrees from Oral Roberts University and The University Of Tulsa and was for more than three decades on the music faculty at his alma mater, ORU. In addition to his solo career, Mr. Ryan also delights in playing with his son, Barron, in the exciting Ryan & Ryan Piano Duo. Donald Ryan is a Steinway Artist.