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“He is one of the most brilliant leaders of the rich musical process in Venezuela and on the Continent”, that is how Maestro José Antonio Abreu, Founder of the System of Orchestras and Choirs of Venezuela describes him. And it is that at 32 years of age this Caracas pianist accumulates a magnificent artistic experience.

He has performed with the Berlin, San Francisco, Havana National, Miami, Palm Beach Symphonies and with almost all Venezuelan orchestras, under the batons of Maestros Claudio Abbado, Gustavo Dudamel, Piero Gamba, James Orent, Ramón Tébar, Giancarlo Guerrero, Eduardo Marturet, Carlos Riazuelo, Felipe Izcaray, Alfredo Rugeles, Benjamin Zander and Patrick Lange, as well as directors of the same generation as Alondra de la Parra, Christian Vásquez and Diego Matheuz.


He has received a good number of awards in Venezuela, Argentina, Greece, Mexico, Lithuania, Spain, Germany, Cuba, Austria, France, Belgium, Germany and the United States, including the Award for Excellence in the Arts from the Excel Foundation, which allowed him to perform with the Berlin Symphony under the baton of Eduardo Marturet. Thanks to this presentation he was invited to record his first CD in the series “Latin American Soloists of the Berlin Symphony Orchestra”.

He has participated in prestigious national and international festivals, including the Palm Beach Atlantic International Piano Festival, where he shared the stage, since 2005, with the acclaimed French director and pianist Phillipe Entremont. It has also been presented at the Philharmonie Hall in Berlin, Salle Cortot in Paris, the Lincoln Center in New York and the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, among others. He has been invited as a Jury of International Contests in countries such as Venezuela, the United States, Panama, Lithuania, Mexico and Germany; the most recent to the VIII Angélica Morales - YAMAHA Piano Competition in Mexico City, the I XXI Century Competition in the City of Xalapa, Mexico, and the ENKOR Music Competition in its 2016 edition in Germany.

Kristhyan served as assistant conductor of the Philharmonic Orchestra of the Americas (POA) in 2005, where he worked alongside young conductor Alondra de la Parra. He performed with the POA on their debut Sony Classics CD and toured with the orchestra at Alice Tully Hall and Walt Disney Concert Hall in May 2010. In 2013, he was named Artist-in-Residence for El Sistema de Venezuela. He was Artist in Residence at the Panama Academy and Music Festival, and later at the Newport Music Festival.

Benítez began his piano studies at the age of four with the Venezuelan pianist Olga López. He has taken classes with Susan Starr, Judit Jaimes, Frank Fernández, Abraham Abreu, Marco Antonio D'Almeida, Walter Blankenheim, Elgin Roth, Lilya Zilberstein, Tamás Ungár, Solomon Mikowsky, Nelson delle Vigne, Cyprien Katsaris, Jacques Rouvier, Jean-Phillipe Collard and Michael Lewin, among others. He has studied at Oberlin Conservatory of Music, Ohio; at the Manhattan School of Music, New York; L'Ecole Normale de Musique, Paris; and at the Boston Conservatory where he received the Doctorate in Musical Arts and the "Artist Diploma" and represented that institution as Musical Ambassador worldwide. He was recently the winner of the Silver Medal at the Dallas International Piano Competition (2015), where he was the only Latin American representative. Upcoming engagements include concerts in Mexico, Taiwan, Colombia, Venezuela, and the United States.

Benítez's recordings include the Piano Concerto no. 2 by Beethoven with the Vienna Symphony conducted by Eduardo Marturet. His second album, "Miniatures" was released in March 2016 and received the Bronze Medal at the Global Music Awards. Thanks to the success of this recording, he was invited by the Chinese Ministry of Culture to tour eleven cities in that country. His next album "Nosotros" won the silver medal at the Global Music Awards in the categories of Best Album and Best Artist. In 2020, he released his Latin American Classics album for the Steinway label, which includes music from Cuba, Argentina, Brazil, Venezuela, and Mexico.

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