Having launched his career with the Berliner Philharmoniker and Semyon Bychkov in 1991, Alban Gerhardt has since gained recognition as one of the world’s most versatile cellists, highly regarded for his technical mastery, profound musicality, 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.
Notable orchestral collaborators include Royal Concertgebouworkest, all the British and German radio orchestras, Berliner Philharmoniker, Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich, Orchestre National de France, Orquesta Nacional de España as well as the Cleveland, Philadelphia, Boston and Chicago symphony orchestras, under conductors such as Christoph von Dohnányi, Kurt Masur, Klaus Mäkelä, Christian Thielemann, Simone Young, Susanna Mälkki, Vladimir Jurowski and Andris Nelsons.
Alongside an extensive repertoire comprising all the core concertos, Gerhardt is also the go-to soloist for contemporary composers. Most recently, he premiered Julian Anderson’s Grawemeyer Award-winning cello concerto, Litanies, with Orchestre National de France, as well as Brett Dean’s Cello Concerto which he premiered with Sydney Symphony Orchestra and Berliner Philharmoniker, and played with New York Philharmonic, Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra and London Philharmonic Orchestra amongst others. Highlights in the 2023/24 season include Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin with Marin Alsop, Gürzenich Orchester with Susanna Mälkki, Royal Concertgebouworkest with Andrew Manze, amd Sydney Symphony Orchestra with Simone Young.
A prolific recording artist, Gerhardt has received several awards for his recordings including an ECHO Klassik Award in 2008 for Reger: Cello Sonatas with Markus Becker under Hyperion, a BBC Music Magazine Award in 2015 for his recording of Unsuk Chin’s Cello Concerto with Myung-Whun Chung and Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra under Deutsche Grammophon (for which he was also shortlisted for a Gramophone Award), and an International Classical Music Award in 2021 for Shostakovich: Cello Concertos with WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln and Jukka-Pekka Saraste under Hyperion.
Also a keen chamber musician, Gerhardt regularly performs with pianist Steven Osborne amongst others. Recent years have seen him collaborate on new artistic projects, such as ’Love in Fragments’ – a poetic union of music, movement, sculpture and spoken word – with violinist Gergana Gergova, choreographer Sommer Ulrickson, and sculptor Alexander Polzin. Gerhardt will continue such collaborations throughout the 2023/24 season, performing at Aldeburgh Festival and in Duisburger Philharmoniker’s Kammerkonzerte series with Alliage Quintet as he takes up the mantle of Duisburger Philharmoniker’s Artist in Residence for the season.