The piano has been the midpoint of Nataša Veljković‘s life ever since she was four years old. After her studies with her »musical father« Prof. Arbo Valdma in Belgrade, at the age of fourteen she was accepted to the class taught by Prof. Paul Badura-Skoda at the University of Music in Vienna, where she completed her studies with distinction at the age of nineteen. She continued her formation in artistic consultations with Nikita Magaloff and further studies with Prof. Rudolf Firkusny at the Juilliard School in New York and Prof. Harry Datyner at the Geneva Conservatory, where she earned her second Master of Arts degree.
Even before she was ten years old Veljković won first prizes at the international youth competitions in Capua and Senigallia – both in Italy. At eleven she celebrated a sensational success in a performance of Maurice Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G major with the Zagreb Philharmonic. Her extraordinary accomplishments as a pianist have also brought her many other distinctions. The list includes the first prize (and only prize) at the Clara Haskil International Competition, one of the most important piano competitions, in Vevey, Switzerland, when she was seventeen and the first prize at the World Music Masters in Paris. Many other forms of recognition followed – such as the Orlando Prize for the best concert at the Dubrovnik Festival and the UMUS Prize (Belgrade) for the most successful concert of the year.
After winning the Clara Haskil Competition (PRIX CLARA HASKIL) Nataša Veljković embarked on a concert career taking her throughout Europe. She has cooperated successfully with the Belgrade Strings »Dusan Skovran« (concert tours through Russia and China; release of a CD on the Belgrade label PGP-RTS featuring piano concertos by Bach, Haydn, and Mendelssohn in 2001), the St. Georges Strings (a live recording – PGP-RTS – in 2004 with three piano concertos by Mozart), and ensembles such as the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra, Zagreb Soloists, Vienna Chamber Orchestra, Vienna Chamber Philharmonic, Capella Istropolitana, Janáček Philharmonic of Ostrava, Radio Katowice, RAI Orchestra, Slovenian Philharmonic, Belgrade Philharmonic, and Spirit of Europe. For many years she has performed with the Camerata Janáček. Nataša Veljković has worked with many prominent conductors such as David Zinman, Lawrence Foster, Dimitri Kitayenko, Cristian Mandeal, Marcello Viotti, Antoni Wit, David Shalon, Emil Tabakov, Martin Sieghart, Ronald Zollman, Pavle Depalj, Mladen Jagust, and Bojan Sudžić.
She has taken part in many European festivals. Here the list includes the Montreux Festival, Berlin Festival, Chopin Festival in Poland, MIDEM Classique in Cannes, Juventus in Cambrai, and Toulouse Festival in France, Algarve Festival in Portugal, Attergau Culture Summer, Carinthian Summer, International Chopin Festival in Gaming, and Haydn Festival in Eisenstadt in Austria, Dubrovnik Summer Festival in Croatia, BEMUS in Belgrade and NOMUS Novi Sad in Serbia, and Istanbul Mozart Festival. At Vienna’s Konzerthaus she regularly appears in the “Music und Dichtung” (Music and Literature) cycle. Her performance of Beethoven’s Triple Concerto at the Sava-Centar in Belgrade was named the best concert of the year 2010 by the prestigious NIN magazine.
During recent years Nataša Veljković has recorded numerous CDs. Her CDs with piano compositions by Franz Liszt, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (Zulus Records), Clara and Robert Schumann, and Joseph Haydn (piano concertos with the Camerata Janáček ) (Gramola). In 2013 Nataša Veljković released several CDs on the cpo label: a piano concerto by Antonio Rosetti with the Southwest German Chamber Orchestra of Pforzheim led by the conductor Johannes Moesus, and piano concertos by Ignaz von Beecke (premiere recording) with the Bavarian Chamber Orchestra of Bad Brückenau under the conductor Johannes Moesus. In 2014 she recorded the complete oeuvre for solo piano of Dora Pejacevic for cpo, in 2015 she recorded a piano concerto by Francois-Adrien Boieldieu in Lugano with the Radio Svizzera Italiana under the conductor Howard Griffiths.
Nataša Veljković lives and works in Vienna, where she holds an associate professorship at the University of Music and the Performing Arts. In addition, from 2007 to 2009 she taught as a visiting professor at the University of the Arts in Ostrava in the Czech Republic. She serves as a juror at international piano and chamber music competitions such as the Clara Haskil International Competition in Vevey, Camillo Togni International Piano Competition in Brescia, Brahms International Competition in Pörtschach, Davorin Jenko International Competition in Belgrade, Petar Konjovic International Competition in Belgrade, Ivan Rijavec“. International Competition in Slovenia, and Belgrade Chopin Festival International Competition. Nataša Veljković’s repertoire ranges over a broad spectrum of piano compositions from all the epochs from the baroque era to the present. The complete oeuvre of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart occupies the center of her musical interest.