Ana Maria Trenchi Bottazzi is an extraordinary pianist. Her seemingly endless array of colors, her impeccable sense of timing, her dynamic playing, and her gorgeous full tone leave her audiences mesmerized.
She is also an extraordinary person. At age 23, she had returned from her first around-the-world concert tour, was scheduled for a New York debut, and seemed destined for a stellar performing career when tragedy struck. A near-fatal car accident left her with major head injuries. Extensive surgery saved her life, but her physical coordination was so impaired that she could hardly walk or lift a cup, let alone play the piano, and her memory was completely unreliable. Doctors told her that she would never be able to perform again. Dr. Bottazzi refused to believe the doctors’ prognosis and began to slowly re-build her ability to play the piano. This would eventually take thirteen years. Her incredible perseverance and faith are an inspiration.
In 1974, she played her long-delayed New York debut in Town Hall, receiving outstanding reviews. In 1976, she performed at Avery Fisher Hall in New York, and to prove to herself that her memory was now intact, she allowed the audience to choose the program from a list of 100 pieces in her extensive repertoire. She then played it from memory, drawing ecstatic applause from the audience and raves from the critics.
Dr. Bottazzi gave her first solo recital at age four and has performed in solo recitals and with orchestras around the world. Her U.S. performances also include 17 concerts at Carnegie Hall.
One of the most cherished performances of her career was playing the Rachmaninoff Second Piano Concerto at Carnegie Hall, with her husband, Dr. Bruno Bottazzi, conducting the American Symphony Orchestra. This concerto was the music they heard at a concert in Argentina the night that they fell in love. After they married, they moved to the United States. As poor immigrants, they struggled to survive. One day, after an arduous job-hunting session, they arranged to meet outside of Carnegie Hall. With no money to go in, they could only imagine strains of music coming out of the building, and they made a vow to each other. One day, the Hall would be theirs, and the applause too, when they would perform “their” Rachmaninoff Concerto. After many years of struggles as immigrants and medical challenges, they finally fulfilled their promise in 1998. It was a memorable performance.