Over the past decade, Alban Gerhardt has established himself among the greatest cellists of our time. His sound is unmistakable and his interpretations of the repertoire are distinguished in their originality. The cello starts to sing under his hands, standard works are newly discovered and unknown pieces are brought to life again. Gerhardt fascinates audiences with the combination of an unerring musical instinct, intense emotionality and a natural, arresting stage presence. Of particular concern for him is his desire to help audiences break with old listening and concert habits and to draw younger audiences to classical music through pioneering projects such as his collaboration with Deutsche Bahn on the main commuter routes in Germany.
Since his early success at competitions and his debut with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra under Semyon Bychkov, Gerhardt has performed with more than 250 different orchestras worldwide (among others Royal Concertgebouw Orkest, London Philharmonic, Philharmonia, Tonhalle Zurich, Gürzenich Orchestra, Sydney Symphony, NHK Symphony Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, Chicago Symphony and Los Angeles Philharmonic) under conductors such as Kurt Masur, Christoph von Dohnányi, Christian Thielemann, Christoph Eschenbach, Sir Neville Marriner, Marek Janowski, Sir Colin Davis, Leonard Slatkin, Michael Tilson-Thomas, Kent Nagano, Sakari Oramo, Paavo Järvi, Neeme Järvi, Esa-Pekka Salonen, David Zinman, Vladimir Jurowski and Andris Nelsons.
Alban Gerhardt‘s repertoire includes more than 70 different cello concerti and he relishes rescuing lesser-known works from undeserved obscurity. His collaborations with composers such as Thomas Larcher, Peteris Vasks, Brett Dean, Jörg Widmann, Osvaldo Golijov, Mathias Hinke and Matthias Pintscher demonstrate his commitment to enlarging the cello repertoire and in 2009 he gave the world premiere of Unsuk Chin’s Cello Concerto which was composed for him. Commissioned by the BBC and premiered at the Proms (his 6th appearance at the Proms) he has since performed the Concerto in The Netherlands, Germany, Far East, Scandinavia and the USA.
Recent and forthcoming highlights include his third visit to the Berlin Philharmonic performing the Chin Cello Concerto under Myung-Whun Chung and engagements with the Boston and San Francisco Symphony, City of Birmingham Symphony, Royal Philharmonic, BBC Philharmonic, Hallé Orchestra, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, Netherlands Radio Philharmonic, Czech Philharmonic, Seoul Philharmonic, Oslo Philharmonic, DSO and RSB Berlin and a tour of Australia including the Adelaide and West Australian Symphony Orchestras. From 2012-15 he is Artist-in-Residence at the Oregon Symphony Orchestra and in 2014/15 Artist-in-Focus at the Wigmore Hall when he will perform recitals with Steven Osborne and Cécile Licad and Quintets with Brett Dean Baiba Skride, Gergana Gergova and Nils Mönkemeyer as part of an extensive European tour.
A highly acclaimed recording artist, he has won three ECHO Classic Awards and his double CD of the complete works for cello by Benjamin Britten was shortlisted for a Gramophone Award in 2013. He has recorded for Deutsche Grammophon and Hyperion spearheading its “Romantic Cello Concertos” series.
Gerhardt plays a unique instrument from the renowned maker Matteo Gofriller. He writes about his travelling and performing experiences in his blog, which can be accessed from his webpage: www.albangerhardt.com.