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Christian Tetzlaff

Christian Tetzlaff

Christian Tetzlaff is one of the most sought-after violinists of our time. "The greatest performance of the work I’ve ever heard" wrote Tim Ashley in the Guardian about his interpretation of Beethoven's violin concerto with Daniel Harding. Concerts featuring Christian Tetzlaff often turn into an existential experience for the performer and audience in equal measure, with old and familiar pieces appearing in a completely new light. But he also draws attention to forgotten masterpieces again and again and tries to establish new works of substance in the repertoire. He maintains an unusually broad repertoire and gives around 100 concerts a year.

Christian Tetzlaff has been "Artist in Residence" at the Berlin Philharmonic, featured in a series of concerts spanning several seasons with the orchestra of the New York Met under James Levine, and is a regular guest of the Vienna and New York Philharmonics, the Concertgebouworkest Amsterdam and the great London orchestras, amongst others, working with conductors such as Andris Nelsons, Robin Ticciati and Vladimir Jurowski.

What makes this musician, born in Hamburg in 1966 but now living in Berlin with his family, so unique – besides his great violinistic mastery – are primarily three things: He takes the sheet music literally, understands music as a language, and reads the great works as narratives treating of central experiences. To communicate that to the audience is Christian Tetzlaff's aim. As a violinist he tries to disappear behind the work – but this is precisely what makes his interpretations so highly individual. Christian Tetzlaff "speaks" with his violin, his playing embraces a broad range of expressive possibilities and is not only geared to melodiousness and virtuoso brilliance.

Christian Tetzlaff started his own string quartet as long ago as 1994, and chamber music has remained just as dear to his heart to this day as his work as a soloist with and without orchestra. Amongst other honours, the Tetzlaff Quartet has been awarded the Diapason d’or, and the trio with his sister Tanja Tetzlaff and the pianist Lars Vogt was nominated for a Grammy. But Christian Tetzlaff has garnered many awards for his CD recordings as a soloist, too. 2017 saw the release of a new solo recording of the sonatas and partitas by Bach.

Christian Tetzlaff plays a violin by German violin maker Peter Greiner and regularly teaches at the Kronberg Academy.