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Percussion

Martin Grubinger

Photo of Martin Grubinger with drumsticks thrown in air in the background

About

Possibly the best multi-percussionist of the world, Martin Grubinger possesses an unusually broad repertoire ranging from solo works and chamber music with partners including his own Percussive Planet Ensemble, to percussion concertos. His technical perfection, enthusiasm and musical versatility make his performances to real ‘must-see’ events and brought the percussion from the back of an orchestra to the middle of the stage.

As the current season’s Artist in Residence at Wiener Symphoniker, Martin Grubinger appears on a number of occasions with the orchestra, amongst them in concerts at Wiener Konzerthaus and Musikverein Wien. He returns to work with long-standing partner orchestras such as Frankfurt Radio Symphony and Gürzenich orchestras, and on tour with the National Orchestra of Belgium and Bruckner Orchestra Linz. New collaborations include engagements with the St Louis Symphony and Real Filharmonía de Galicia.

Amongst the growing number of works written for Grubinger are Avner Dorman’s Frozen in Time (2007) and Friedrich Cerha’s Concerto (2008), performed and recorded with the Wiener Philharmoniker conducted by Peter Eötvös on Kairos, as well as Tan Dun’s concerto, Tears of Nature (2012). In 2014 Eötvös’ Speaking Drums received its world premiere with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra conducted by the composer. This season a new percussion concerto dedicated to Martin Grubinger by Daníel Bjarnason will be premiered with the Gothenburg Symphony and later performed with Iceland Symphony Orchestra under the baton of the composer. Grubinger’s renowned percussion projects such as The Percussive Planet, Century of Percussion and Caribbean Showdown are further examples of his versatility.

In 2016/17 Grubinger was Artist in Residence at Elbphilharmonie; other residencies led him to Camerata Salzburg and at the Philharmonie Köln, Philharmonie München, Wiener Konzerthaus and Tonhalle Orchester Zurich. He has appeared with orchestras including NHK Symphony, Oslo Philharmonic, National Symphony Orchestra of Taiwan, NDR Sinfonieorchester, Hamburg, Munich and Dresdner Philharmoniker, Wiener Philharmoniker, Bamberger Symphoniker and BBC Philharmonic. He guests regularly with leading orchestras in the United States, amongst them Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra and New York Philharmonic Orchestra.

Regular festival appearances include the Rheingau Music Festival, Heidelberger Spring Festival, Bregenzer Festspiele, Beethovenfest Bonn, Lucerne Festival and Salzburg Festival, at Baden-Baden Festspielhaus, the Brass & Percussion Festival in Tokyo’s Suntory Hall and the Grant Park Music Festival in Chicago. In 2013 he was Artiste Étoile at Lucerne Festival.

Winner of multiple prizes, Martin Grubinger is recipient of the Bernstein Award by the Schleswig Holstein Musik Festival and the prestigious Jeunesses Musicales’ Würth Prize. Grubinger’s first CD, Drums ‘n’ Chant, was followed by a live DVD recording of The Percussive Planet - both for Deutsche Grammophon. He has since recorded a number of projects for various labels.

Born in Salzburg, Martin Grubinger studied at the Bruckner Conservatory in Linz and at the Salzburg Mozarteum. He quickly garnered attention through appearances at several international competitions, including the second World Marimbaphone Competition in Okaya, Japan, and at the EBU Competition in Norway. Martin Grubinger holds teaching positions at Zurich University of the Arts and as Professor for Multipercussion at the University of Music and Dramatic Arts Mozarteum Salzburg.

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