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With his highly virtuosic yet unpretentious style, Martin
Helmchen has become one of the great pianists of his generation.
Born in 1982, he has made a series of sensational U.S. orchestral
debuts, beginning in 2011 at Tanglewood, playing the Schumann
Concerto with the Boston Symphony Orchestra under Christoph von
Dohnányi. In 2014, with the New York Philharmonic at Lincoln
Center, he gave a revelatory performance of the Dvorák Piano
Concerto; in 2015, he made his Symphony Hall debut, performing
Beethoven's Concerto No. 5 with the Boston Symphony Orchestra; and
in 2016, he performed with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, playing
Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 2. This past season, he debuted with
the Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra at Lincoln Center under
Thierry Fischer, performing Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 25. During
the 2017/2018 season, he will make debuts with both the San Diego
and Kansas City symphonies.
Mr. Helmchen has also appeared with the symphonies of Dallas,
Grand Rapids, Houston, Portland (Oregon), Saint Louis, and San
Francisco, as well as with the Cleveland Orchestra at Blossom. In
May 2014, he made a highly acclaimed recital debut at the Kennedy
Center in Washington, D.C.
Among Martin Helmchen's worldwide highlights are performances
with the Berlin Philharmonic, Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, London
Philharmonic, Orchestre de Paris, Vienna Philharmonic, and the NHK
Symphony in Japan. Other international engagements include the City
of Birmingham Symphony, Frankfurt Radio Symphony,
Gürzenich-Orchester/Cologne, Orchestre Philharmonique de
Monte-Carlo, Philharmonia Orchestra/London, Prague Symphony, and
the Swedish Chamber Orchestra. Artist-in-Residence with the Zurich
Tonhalle Orchestra during the 2011/2012 season, he has also
appeared with the BBC/London, Bournemouth Symphony, Deutsche
Kammerphilharmonie/Bremen, Dresden Philharmonic, DSO/Berlin, Hallé
Orchestra/Manchester, Giuseppe Verdi Symphony/Milan, NDR/Hamburg,
Netherlands Philharmonic, Orchestre National de Lyon, Orchestre
National de France, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, Rotterdam
Philharmonic, RSO/Berlin, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, and the
Stuttgart Radio Orchestra, among others. In France, he tours with
La Chambre Philharmonique under Emmanuel Krivine.
Mr. Helmchen has collaborated with such renowned conductors as
David Afkham, Marc Albrecht, Herbert Blomstedt, Semyon Bychkov,
Christoph von Dohnányi, Sir Mark Elder, Lawrence Foster, Edward
Gardner, Valery Gergiev, Hans Graf, Manfred Honeck, Philippe
Herreweghe, Pablo Heras-Casado, Marek Janowski, Michail Jurowski,
Vladimir Jurowski, Bernhard Klee, Jiri Kout, Sir Neville Marriner,
the late Kurt Masur, Andris Nelsons, Sir Roger Norrington, Andrés
Orozco-Estrada, Christoph Poppen, Markus Poschner, Michael
Sanderling, Heinrich Schiff, Marcus Stenz, Krzysztof Urbanski,
Gilbert Varga, and David Zinman, to name a few.
Also an enthusiastic recitalist, Martin Helmchen has performed
at prestigious venues around the world, such as The Frick
Collection/New York, Carnegie's Weill Recital Hall (with cellist
Marie-Elisabeth Hecker), the Coast Recital Society, San Francisco
Performances, ArtSpring, the Wigmore Hall/London, and the Alte Oper
in Frankfort. He also appears regularly at major German festivals,
we well as the Schubertiade, Lockenhaus, and Marlboro. In 2017, he
will be artist in residence at Germany's Schwetzingen SWR
With a passion for chamber music, largely ignited by his early
collaborations with the late cellist Boris Pergamenschikow, Mr.
Helmchen now performs regularly with Heinrich Schiff and
Marie-Elisabeth Hecker. Other partners include Juliane Banse,
Veronika Eberle, Julia Fischer (with whom he is on tour in Asia
during the current season), Sharon Kam, Gidon Kremer, Sabine Meyer,
Christian Tetzlaff, Lars Vogt, and Tabea Zimmermann. Since 2010, he
has been an Associate Professor of chamber music at the Kronberg
Academy. Last summer he was invited to return to Elena Bashkirova's
International Chamber Music Festival in Jerusalem.
An active recording artist, Martin Helmchen's debut disc of
Mozart concertos with the Netherlands Chamber Philharmonic was
released in September 2007 through his exclusive contract with
PentaTone. A second Mozart concerto disc with the same orchestra
was released in 2013. His first solo CD, a recording of works by
Schubert, won an ECHO Award in 2009. Other discs for PentaTone
include the Mendelssohn concertos, the Schumann and Dvorák
concertos, and the highly acclaimed complete works of Schubert for
violin and piano with Julia Fischer.
Mr. Helmchen studied at the Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler in
Berlin with Galina Iwanzowa, at the Hochschule für Musik und
Theater in Hanover with Arie Vardie, and with William Grant Naboré.
His career took off when he won the 2001 Clara Haskil International
Piano Competition at the age of nineteen. Other distinctions
include a fellowship from the Borletti-Buitoni Trust in 2005; the
Credit Suisse Young Artist Award in 2006 (culminating in his debut
with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra under Valery Gergiev at the
Lucerne Festival); and soloist in the "BBC New Generation Artists"
program from 2005 to 2007.