Conrad was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba and educated at Bedales School in England. He studied English and Law at Trinity College, Cambridge, and later qualified as a barrister (Middle Temple). His highly acclaimed novels Sex & Genius and The Concert Pianist were published by Bloomsbury in 2001 and 2006 respectively, and his new novel Unfinished Business is published in May 2016. His short stories include Clifford de Brabazon: Concert Pianist, read on Radio 4 by Pip Torrens, and On the Trail of Bin Laden, published in You Magazine. Conrad’s recent work has included a libretto, Dionysos, for the composer Roberto Rusconi, which received a rehearsed workshop performance at the Royal Opera House in 2015. Conrad has written articles relating to music and piano for Pianist Magazine and given talks on the life of a professional pianist with the Gramophone critic and writer Bryce Morrison. He has a particular interest in music and language and was interviewed on the subject by the poet Ian McMillan on Radio 4’s ‘The Verb’. Following the publication of The Concert Pianist he and pianist Christina Lawrie performed readings and music from the novel at the Rye, Wigtown, Whitstable, and Cheltenham Festivals, and at Crear.
Conrad is an intrepid and omnivorous classical pianist and has played works by Schumann and Tchaikovsky on four occasions at King’s Place in Lucy Parham’s Celebrity Piano Concerts alongside such reputed virtuosi as Alan Rusbridger, Edward Fox, and Simon Russell Beale.