Born in Lyon, France, in 1957, Pierre-Laurent Aimard studied at the Paris Conservatory, where he won four first prizes. As a student of Yvonne Loriod from the age of twelve, he developed a close relationship with the composer Olivier Messiaen and has subsequently become a leading interpreter of his works for piano.
It was as the winner of the Olivier Messiaen International Competition in 1973 that Aimard came to international prominence. Since then, he has played throughout the world under the direction of such conductors as Pierre Boulez, Seiji Ozawa, Zubin Mehta, Charles Dutoit, André Previn, Andrew Davis, and David Robertson. He made his American debut with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at the age of twenty.