Curiosity, diversity and a firm focus on the music itself characterize the artistic work of Jean-Guihen Queyras. Whether on stage or on record, one experiences an artist dedicated completely and passionately to the music, whose humble and quite unpretentious treatment of the score reflects its clear, undistorted essence. The inner motivations of composer, performer and audience must all be in tune with one another in order to bring about an outstanding concert experience.
Jean-Guihen Queyras learnt this interpretative approach from Pierre Boulez, with whom he established a long artistic partnership. This philosophy, alongside a flawless technique and a clear, engaging tone, also shapes Jean-Guihen Queyras’ approach to every performance and his absolute commitment to the music itself.
His approaches to early music – as in his collaborations with the Freiburg Baroque Orchestra and the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin – and to contemporary music are equally thorough. He has given world premieres of works by, among others, Ivan Fedele, Gilbert Amy, Bruno Mantovani, Michael Jarrell, Johannes-Maria Staud, Thomas Larcher and Tristan Murail. Conducted by the composer, he recorded Peter Eötvös’ Cello Concerto to mark his 70th birthday in November 2014.
Jean-Guihen Queyras was a founding member of the Arcanto Quartet and forms a celebrated trio with Isabelle Faust and Alexander Melnikov; the latter is, alongside Alexandre Tharaud, a regular accompanist. He has also collaborated with zarb specialists Bijan and Keyvan Chemirani on a Mediterranean programme.
The versatility in his music-making has led to many concert halls, festivals and orchestras inviting Jean-Guihen to be Artist in Residence, including the Concertgebouw Amsterdam and the Festival d’Aix-en-Provence, Vredenburg Utrecht, De Bijloke Ghent and the Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg.
Jean-Guihen Queyras often appears with renowned orchestras such as the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Mahler Chamber Orchestra, the Orchestre de Paris, London Symphony Orchestra, the Gewandhausorchester and the Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich, working with conductors such as Iván Fischer, Philippe Herreweghe, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, François-Xavier Roth, Sir John Eliot Gardiner and Sir Roger Norrington.
Jean-Guihen Queyras’ discography is impressive. His recordings of cello concertos by Edward Elgar, Antonín Dvořák, Philippe Schoeller and Gilbert Amy have been released to critical acclaim. As part of a harmonia mundi project dedicated to Schumann, he has recorded the complete piano trios with Isabelle Faust and Alexander Melnikov and at the same time the Schumann cello concerto with the Freiburg Baroque Orchestra under Pablo Heras-Casado. The recording “THRACE - Sunday Morning Sessions“ explores, in collaboration with the Chemirani brothers and Sokratis Sinopoulos, the intersections of contemporary music, improvisation and Mediterranean traditions. The 2022/23 season includes CD releases for the recording of works by composer Marin Marais with Alexandre Tharaud, as well as a release of the first recording by the "Invisible Stream" ensemble consisting of Jean-Guihen Queyras, Raphaël Imbert, Pierre-François Blanchard and Sonny Troupé. Jean-Guihen Queyras records exclusively for Harmonia Mundi.
Highlights in the 2022/23 season include concerts with his ensembles "Invisible Stream" and "Thrace", concert tours to Australia, Japan and Canada, invitations from the Prague Symphony Orchestra, the Bochumer Symphoniker, the Residentie Orkest Den Haag, the Philharmonisches Staatsorchester Hamburg, as well as chamber music concerts with Alexander Melnikov, Jörg Widmann, the Belcea Quartet, the Quatuor Modigliani and Isabelle Faust. Alongside Yuja Wang, Jean-Guihen Queyras has been selected as Spotlight Artist of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra for the upcoming season and will also be Resident Artist at the Cello Biennale Amsterdam.
Jean-Guihen Queyras holds a professorship at the University of Music Freiburg and is Artistic Director of the “Rencontres Musicales de Haute-Provence” festival in Forcalquier. He plays a 1696 instrument by Gioffredo Cappa, made available to him by the Mécénat Musical Société Générale.
Alexandre Tharaud Marin
In a career spanning 25 years, Alexandre Tharaud has become a unique figure in the classical music world and a key exponent of French pianism. His extraordinary discography of over 25 solo albums, most of which received major awards from the music press, features repertoire ranging from Couperin, Bach and Scarlatti, through Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Chopin, Brahms, and Rachmaninov to the major 20th century French composers. The breadth of his artistic endeavours is also reflected in collaborations with theatre makers, dancers, choreographers, writers and film makers, as well as with singer-songwriters and musicians outside the realm of classical music.
Alexandre is a sought-after soloist, appearing with many of the world’s leading orchestras: upcoming highlights include concerto performances with the Orchestre de Paris, Orchestre National de France, Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg, Orchestre National de Lille and Les Violons du Roy. Recent engagements include concerts with the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Royal Concertgebouworkest, Cleveland and Philadelphia Orchestras, Cincinnati Symphony, London Philharmonic, hr-Sinfonieorchester Frankfurt, and Orchestra dell'Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia.
This season’s highlights include the world premiere of Lazkano’s piano concerto with the Orchestre national de France and a Spanish tour of the concerto with the Basque National Orchestra, a European tour with cellist Jean-Guihen Queyras, and solo recitals at the Paris and Berlin Philharmonie and Kings Place.
Alexandre is an exclusive recording artist of Erato Records. In his latest album Cinema (release October 2022), he dedicates himself to the film music of Michel Legrand, John Williams, Ennio Morricone, Francis Lai, Marvin Hamlisch, Nino Rota, Philip Glass and many others. He was supported in his recording by the Orchestra dell'Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia conducted by Antonio Pappano, as well as numerous 'special guests', including singers Vanessa Paradis, Camélia Jordana and soprano Sabine Devieilhe.
Recent recordings include Schubert: Impromptus D899, Moments Musicaux D780, Chanson d’Amour with Sabine Devieilhe and Le Poète du Piano. His discography reflects an eclectic affinity to many musical styles, with recent recordings including Versailles, which pays tribute to composers associated with the courts of the French kings Louis XIV, XV and XVI, a tribute to singer-songwriter Barbara, a Brahms duo album with Jean-Guihen Queyras (a regular chamber music partner for 20 years), and Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 2. Over the course of his career he has made critically acclaimed recordings of Rameau, Scarlatti, Bach’s Goldberg Variations and Italian Concerto, Beethoven’s three final sonatas, Chopin’s 24 Preludes, and Ravel’s complete piano works.
In 2017, Alexandre published Montrez-moi vos mains, an introspective and engaging account of daily life as a pianist. He had previously co-authored Piano Intime, with journalist Nicolas Southon. He is the subject of a film directed by Swiss film maker Raphaëlle Aellig-Régnier: Alexandre Tharaud, Le Temps Dérobé, and appeared in the role of the pianist “Alexandre” in Michael Hanneke’s celebrated 2012 film Amour.
In 2021, Alexandre won the Instrumental Soloist of the year award at the Victoires de la Musique Classique.