« Clef Resmusica » award and « 4 diapasons » for her CD Études d’interprétation de Maurice Ohana, prize-winner of the Académie et Concours Internationaux de Val d’Isère in 2009, Maria Paz Santibáñez (Chile-Italy) studied the piano at the Universidad de Chile’s Faculty of Arts with pianist Mr. Galvarino Mendoza (1928-2009), her musical godfather. She continued her training in Czech Republic with Jaromir Kriz, professor at the Music Academy of Prague. She settled in Paris in 1999 after obtaining a Master’s degree in interpretation at the Universidad de Chile. In 2001 she obtained a Diploma in performance at the Ecole Normale de Musique de Paris Alfred Cortot under the guidance of Ms. Odile Delangle.
From 2002 to 2004 she pursued her studies with Mr. Claude Helffer (1922 – 2004) in the framework of group sessions called “Les Classiques du XXe” and also privately. Working with Claude Helffer would leave a deep imprint on her musical career.
Maria Paz Santibáñez also attended many advanced courses on contemporary music and music of the 20th century with pianists such as Ms. Yvonne Loriod-Messiaen, Mr. Claude Helffer, Mr. Roger Muraro, Mr. Bruce Brubaker or Mr. Jean-François Antonioli.
Since 2000 she has played in many European venues, in the USA and also in Latin America. Her strong interest for new music has led her to performances of works by contemporary composers in world premieres.
Both her last CD devoted to the Études d’interprétation of Maurice Ohana (January 2011) and her previous one, Piano-piano (2003), revealed part of her reflection and endeavours in favour of new music. A new opus, « La caja Magica »,was launched in 2013 with Latin american composers’s music from 1920 until today.
Maria Paz joined the Observatoire Musical Français (Université Paris-Sorbonne) in 2007. She is currently preparing a PhD thesis on the Cahiers d’analyse inédits of Claude Helffer under the direction of Ms. Danièle Pistone
María Paz Santibáñez is a teacher in a conservatory near Paris (91) and at the Universidad ARCIS in Chile.
In 2013, Maria Paz launched her third album « La Caja Magica », as a tribute to South-American composers from 1920 to date. Recently she received the 2013 edition of the prize « Victor Jara », from the APACESP.
In 2014, Chilean president Michelle Bachelet appointed Maria Paz as cultural attaché in France.