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  • Bianca Vinther

ART TALK with Jacques Moreau, French Concert Pianist & Professor of Music

The ears can hear, the heart can listen. Deeply. Jacques Moreau knows how to listen deeply and to let the music flow through him without resistance or judgment but with a deep understanding of the musical phenomenon. Because he knows how to pay attention to what his ears perceive and how to respond spontaneously to each sound.

Jacques is a concert pianist and a professor of music but more importantly, I’d say, he’s a music philosopher. On Tuesday, 12 April 2022, I had an amazing conversation with him, in which he talked about the essence of music and the secret to being a musician.

You can listen to our talk on The Pointless Artist Blog > ART TALK with Jacques Moreau, or on THE POINTLESS ARTIST PODCAST on, Spotify, and Apple Podcasts.

Picture of the French concert pianist Jacques Moreau, member of the Agency of Accreditation of European Conservatoires (AEC).
Jacques Moreau, French concert pianist and professor of music. Courtesy of the artist.

Jacques graduated from the Paris Conservatoire. Aside from piano concerts, he taught and held management positions within the network of French music schools since 1982. In 2002, he became Deputy-Director of the Music Department at the Lyon Conservatoire and Head of Cefedem Rhône-Alpes in Lyon, an institution that trains music teachers in innovative, student-driven, and project-based ways.

During the academic year 2014-2015, Jacques was appointed by the Belgium Quality Agency for Higher Education to chair a committee in charge of assessing the four musical higher education institutions of Belgium (French part). Among other things, he’s also Academic Advisor to the Princess Galyani Vadana Institute of Music in Bangkok, Thailand.

This is his life story in a nutshell.

Jacques spent nine years at the Paris Conservatoire trying to prove to his professors and family that he could be a pianist in a highly competitive environment where technique was valued more than artistic expression. For a while, music stopped being a pleasure – it became a constant challenge for him. But then he found his calling in teaching piano and leading French musical institutions in new, forward-looking ways.

He gained a much broader understanding of what a concert is, challenged the French traditional music teaching models and methods, and became a tireless advocate for holistic and mindful musical education and practice.

The French concert pianist Jacques Moreau in his role as an orchestra conductor.
Jacques Moreau as an orchestra conductor. Courtesy of the artist.

Here's a summary of our conversation. You’ll certainly find it enlightening and inspiring for you. Promise.

The Role of Practice

Although practice is crucial, it shouldn’t be pursued for purposes of technical perfection, but as a means to find your voice and express your artistic vision. Technique without a personal voice is like a performance without a soul. I see a striking parallel to the visual arts here. Don’t you?