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241th Season

Helene Grimaud


Helene Grimaud was born in Aix-en Provence in the south of France in 1969. She studied with Jacqueline Courtin at the conservatory there and subsequently in Marseille with Pierre Barbizet. At the age of 13 she was accepted by the Paris Conservatory where she won the first prize in piano in 1985. In July, immediately after graduating, she recorded Rachmaninov’s Sonata no. 2 and the complete Etudes-Tableaux op. 33 (Grand Prix du disque, 1986). She studied additionally with Gyorgy Sandor and Leon Fleisher. The year 1987 marked a decisive turning point in her career with appearances at MIDEM in Cannes and at the piano festival La Roque d’Antheron, her first recital in Tokyo and Daniel Barenboim’s invitation to perform with the Orchestre de Paris. Helene Grimaud has since performed with many of the world’s major orchestras and renowned conductors.

First performs for the pianist Dmitri Bashkirov, who becomes an important influence on her playing. Appearance at the Lockenhaus Festival at the invitation of Gidon Kremer, with whom she performs – Kremer and Martha Argerich become further important influences in her career

Debut with the Cleveland Orchestra, followed by appearances with leading orchestras in the USA and Europe. Settles in the USA. New York recital debut at the Metropolitan Museum; European debut with the St. Petersburg Philharmonic under Temirkanov (Rachmaninov, Piano Concerto no. 2) at the Aix-en-Provence Festival

Tours Germany with the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra under Neeme Jarvi

Debut with the Berliner Philharmoniker under Claudio Abbado performing Rachmaninov’s Concerto no. 2

Highly successful tour of Spain with Jeffrey Tate and the English Chamber Orches¬tra. She performs with the Gustav Mahler Youth Orchestra led by Claudio Abbado at the Lucerne and Pesaro Festivals

Performs and records Brahms’s Concerto no. 1 with Kurt Sanderling and the Berlin Staatskapelle (Cannes Classical Recording of the Year, 1999)

New York Philharmonic debut with Beethoven’s Concerto no. 4 under Kurt Masur. Grimaud and the photographer J Henry Fair establish the Wolf Conservation Center, a private, non-profit-making educational facility in South Salem (Westchester County, NY), to promote conservation of this threatened species

Debuts with the Boston Symphony and the Philadelphia Orchestra. Tour of the Czech Republic; in autumn she is the soloist (along with Martha Argerich) in a European festival tour made by Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony. Performs Beethoven’s Concerto no. 4 with the Berliner Philharmoniker and David Zinman, and gives a solo recital in the Berlin Philharmonie which is filmed for TV broadcast

Debut in Amsterdam with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra under Riccardo Chailly (Ravel, Concerto in G). Beethoven’s Concerto no. 4 in Paris, and at the London Proms with the Orchestre de Paris and Eschenbach. In January 2002 she is appointed an “Offi­cier dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres” by the French Ministry of Culture

Signs an exclusive contract with Deutsche Grammophon. Tours Europe and Japan with the Czech Philharmonic. Gives world premiere of new work by Arvo Part at London’s Tate Modern and performs Schumann’s Piano Concerto with the Philharmonia at the Royal Festival Hall. Festival appearances at the London Proms and Edinburgh

Records Arvo Part’s Credo in the composer’s presence for Deutsche Grammophon; the recording also features Corigliano’s Fantasia on an ostinato and Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy and Tempest Sonata (Choc du Monde de la musique, Diapason d’or, 2004). European tour with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe and Jukka-Pekka Saraste. In November 2003 in Paris her book Variations sauvages is published, in which Helene Grimaud talks about her life as a musician and her environmental work with wolves

Performs Beethoven’s Concerto no. 4 in San Francisco under Ashkenazy; US tour with the Russian National Orchestra, playing Bartok’s Concerto no. 3; Beethoven’s “Emperor” Concerto on a European tour with Michael Gielen. Other concert engagements include the Brahms Concerto no. 1 in Stockholm and at the London Proms, Ravel’s G major Concerto in Japan and Rachmaninov’s Second Concerto in Germany and France. Recitals in Vienna, Ludwigsburg and Amsterdam, and in duo with Truls Mork in Paris. Records the Second Sonatas of Chopin and Rachmaninov, plus Chopin’s Barcarolle and Berceuse, and Bartok’s Concerto no. 3 with Boulez and the LSO (German Record Critics Award, Record Academy Prize, Tokyo, 2005; Midem Classic Award, 2006), both released in 2005

Orchestral engagements throughout the USA and Europe, including the London Proms, and an extensive European tour with the SWR Sinfonieorchester and Sir Roger Norrington. Recitals in Atlanta, London, Paris, Berlin and Munich, and a tour of Japan. This year she records Reflection: music inspired by Clara Schumann, including her husband Robert’s Piano Concerto, songs by Clara herself, and solo and chamber music by Brahms (released in 2006). Echo Award in the category “Instrumentalist of the Year”

Appearances throughout the USA, Europe and in Japan, including concerts with the London Symphony Orchestra, the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, St. Petersburg Philharmonic, the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie, San Francicso Symphony Orchestra, Gulbenkian Orchestra, Vienna Symphony and the Bamberg Symphony Orchestra (London Proms), as well as recitals at New York’s Carnegie Hall, with the LSO Chamber Ensemble and at festivals including the Lucerne Festival and the Musikfest Bremen

Concerts include appearances in the USA, Canada and Europe with the Dallas, Chicago and Toronto Symphony orchestras, the New York Philharmonic, Russian National Or­chestra, St. Petersburg Philharmonic, Berliner Philhar­moniker and Berlin Staatskapelle. With the Dresden Staatskapelle and Fabio Luisi she performs Beethoven’s Concerto no. 5 on tour throughout Europe, and also with the Strasburg Philharmonic Orchestra in France and Germany, the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie in Germany, the Israel Philharmonic Or­chestra in Tel Aviv, and the Philadelphia Orchestra in the USA. Recitals in Los Angeles, Luxemburg, Vienna and Germany. Appearances at the Caramoor Summer Festival with the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, the Aix-en-Provence Festival with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, the Verbier Festival (with Maisky and Quasthoff), and the Salzburg Festival. Release of Beethoven’s Piano Concerto no. 5 with the Dresden Staatskapelle under Vladimir Jurowski

Performs concertos in the USA with the Orchestra of St. Luke’s (Carnegie Hall, Beet­hoven, no. 5), the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra (Bartok, no. 3), the Washington National Symphony Orchestra (Beethoven, no. 4); in Europe with the Philharmonia Orchestra (Beethoven, nos. 4 & 5), the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin (Ravel, G major), the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra (on tour in Israel; Beethoven, nos. 4 & 5), the London Philharmonic Orchestra (Schumann; Rachmaninov, no. 2; Bartok, no. 3), the Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse (Brahms, no. 2), Dresden Staatskapelle (Schumann), the Lucerne Festival Orchestra (Rachmaninov, no. 2), Vienna Symphony Orchestra (Beethoven, no. 4); and in Japan with the Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orches­tra (Beethoven, no. 5). Solo and chamber-music recitals in London, New York, France and numerous German cities; festival appearances in Istanbul, Verbier, and Lucerne. A special highlight is her appearance at the Last Night of the Proms in London’s Royal Albert Hall; the concert will be broadcast live around the world. Grimaud records works by J. S. Bach, including the Harpsichord Concerto no. 1 and three Preludes and Fugues, and transcriptions of Bach by Busoni, Liszt and Rachmani­nov (release: autumn 2008)


Mariinsky Theatre:
1 Theatre Square
St. Petersburg
Mariinsky-2 (New Theatre):
34 Dekabristov Street
St. Petersburg
Mariinsky Concert Hall:
20 Pisareva street
St. Petersburg

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