Barnabás Kelemen

Photo: Emmer Rovid

Photo: Emmer Rovid

Representation: UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand

An artist of ‘innate musicality’ with a technical execution that belongs ‘only to the greatest’ (The Guardian), Hungarian violinist Barnabás Kelemen has captured the attention of the music world. With a repertoire that ranges from Classical to Contemporary music, Kelemen gave the Hungarian premières of the Ligeti and Schnittke Violin Concertos as well as the Hungarian and world premières of violin works by Gubaidulina and Kurtág.

Kelemen collaborates with the BBC Symphony, Bournemouth Symphony, Irish Chamber, Budapest Festival, NDR Hannover, Deutsche Radio Philharmonie Saarbrücken, Helsinki Philharmonic, Lahti Symphony, Tapiola Sinfonietta, Trondheim Symphony, Netherlands Radio, Orchestra della Toscana, Auckland Philharmonia, Hong Kong Philharmonic, Kioi Sinfonietta, Malaysian Philharmonic and the Yomiuri Nippon Symphony orchestras.

Kelemen works with renowned conductors such as Lionel Bringuier, Olari Elts, Peter Eötvös, Ivan Fischer, Sascha Goetzel, Pietari Inkinen, Vladimir Jurowski, Tonu Kajuste, Zoltán Kocsis, Hannu Lintu, Sir Neville Marriner, Michael Sanderling, Leif Segerstam, Dmitri Solbodeniouk, Masaaki Suzuki, Gábor Takács-Nagy and Krzstysztof Urbánski. He was Artist in Residence in the 10/11 season at Musis Sacrum in Arnhem. As soloist and conductor he appeared with Budapest Festival Chamber Orchestra, Het Kamerorkest Brugge, Indianapolis Symphony, Norwegian Chamber Orchestra and Royal Concertgebouw Chamber Orchestra.

In recital Kelemen has performed with Zoltán Kocsis and Shai Wosner with whom he has appeared at Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Bozar in Brussels and Carnegie Hall in New York. In 2010 he founded the Kelemen Quartet, which received a silver medal, audience prize and the Musica Viva Grand Prize at the Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition in 2011.

Highlights in the 2013/14 season include appearances as a soloist with Pannon Philharmonic and Tibor Boganyi, Bach Collegium München and Florian Sonnleitner, Sinfonieorchester Innsbruck, London Philharmonic and Michal Dworzynski, Franz Liszt Chamber, Hallé Orchestra and Ryan Wigglesworth, Budapest Philharmonic Orchestra (Hungarian State Opera) and Hungarian National Philharmonic with Zóltan Kocsis. Kelemen will also appear in chamber music performances with Alexander Longquich, Nicolas Altstaedt and Katalin Kokas in Salzburg, Utrecht and Vienna.

Kelemen’s varied discography has been received to critical acclaim: his recording of Brahms’ Violin Sonatas with Tamás Vásáry won a Diapason d’Or; and his recording of Liszt’s complete works for violin and piano with Gergely Bogányi was awarded the Grand Prix du Disque 2001 by the International Liszt Society. His recording of Bartók’s Rhapsodies and Violin Concerto No. 2 with the Hungarian National Philharmonic and Zoltán Kocsis, released on the Hungaroton label, won the German Record Critics’ Award 2011 in the concerto category. Among his more recent recordings are a live DVD of the complete Mozart Violin Concertos and a disc of Bartók’s Violin Concerto No. 1 with the Hungarian National Philharmonic and Kocsis. A recital CD released on Hungaroton with Bartók’s Solo Sonata and both Bartók Violin Sonatas with Zoltán Kocsis received a Gramophone Award in the Chamber Music category 2013.

Born in Budapest in 1978, Kelemen entered the Franz Liszt Music Academy at the age of eleven and later went on to become Third Prize Winner of the 2001 Queen Elisabeth Competition in Brussels, as well as First Prize Winner at the International Violin Competition in Indianapolis in 2002. In recognition of his achievements the Hungarian government awarded him the Sándor Végh Prize in 2001, the Franz Liszt Prize in 2003, Rózsavölgyi Prize in 2003 and most recently the Kossuth Prize in 2012. Since 2005 he has been a professor at the Franz Liszt Music Academy Budapest and a guest professor at Indiana University Bloomington.

Barnabás Kelemen performs on a Guarneri del Gesú violin of 1742 (ex-Dénes Kovács), generously loaned by the State of Hungary.

Promoters please note: if you wish to include this biography in a concert programme etc, please contact Hazard Chase to ensure that you receive the most up to date version.
Email: Sophie Tiezel

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