“One of the finest cellists around – expressive, unshowy and infinitely classy“ (The Guardian). Alban Gerhardt has, for twenty-five years, made a unique impact on audiences worldwide with his intense musicality, compelling stage presence and insatiable artistic curiosity. His gift for shedding fresh light on familiar scores, along with his appetite for investigating new repertoire from centuries past and present, truly set him apart from his peers.
Gerhardt is passionate about sharing his discoveries with audiences far beyond the traditional concert hall: outreach projects undertaken in Europe and the US have involved performances and workshops, not only in schools and hospitals, but also pioneering sessions in public spaces and young offender institutions. His collaboration with Deutsche Bahn, involving live performances on the main commuter routes in Germany, vividly demonstrates his commitment to challenging traditional expectations of classical music. In early 2017, Gerhardt founded #Musicians4UnitedEurope (www.musicians4unitedeurope.com), a group of international musicians working together to voice their support for a united and democratic Europe.
Following early competition success, Gerhardt’s international career was launched by his debut with Berliner Philharmoniker and Semyon Bychkov in 1991. Notable orchestra collaborations since include Concertgebouw Amsterdam, London Philharmonic, all of the British and German radio orchestras, Tonhalle Zürich, Leipzig Gewandhaus, Royal Stockholm and Oslo Philharmonic, Orchestre National de France as well as Cleveland, Philadelphia and Chicago Symphony Orchestras, under conductors such as Kurt Masur, Christoph von Dohnányi, Christian Thielemann, Christoph Eschenbach, Michael Tilson Thomas, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Vladimir Jurowski, Kirill Petrenko and Andris Nelsons.
He is a keen chamber musician; his regular performance partners include Steven Osborne, Cecile Licad, Baiba Skride and Brett Dean. Gerhardt has collaborated with composers including Jörg Widmann, Unsuk Chin, and Matthias Pintscher; and in almost every case he commits to memorising their scores before world premiere performances. In summer 2018 he will give the premiere of a new concerto by Brett Dean with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra and then later in the year with the Berliner Philharmoniker and Sakari Oramo.
A highly acclaimed recording artist, Gerhardt has won three ECHO Klassik Awards as well as ICMA and MIDEM Classic awards, and his recording of Unsuk Chin’s Cello Concerto, released by Deutsche Grammophon, won the BBC Music Magazine Award and was shortlisted for a Gramophone Award in 2015. Gerhardt has recorded extensively for Hyperion, his latest recording of Rostropovich’s ‘Encores’ released in January 2017. His next recording project will be all six suites by J S Bach.
Alban Gerhardt plays a Matteo Gofriller cello dating from 1710.