‘Helmchen is one of those artists with an aesthetic, culturally penetrating vision of a work, their fingers reflecting every aspect of its universe. Helmchen’s control of sound, subtle dynamic range and rhythmical mastery leave one speechless.’ Christophe Huss, ‘Le Devoir’ July 2015.
There are shooting-stars who enter the concert arena to the sound of a drum-roll, but often rapidly disappear again. And then, there are artists who gradually play their way into the footlights, until one day one cannot imagine them ever not being there. Normally, winning the Clara Haskil Competition would also have catapulted nineteen-year-old Martin Helmchen into the celebrity carousel of the classical music world. But concert agents and record companies were more cautious. And so Martin Helmchen developed his own attitude to musicmaking, and established himself in the the piano world’s premier league, with his expressive, utterly intimate playing. He appears regularly with the world-class orchestras of Boston and Chicago, London and Cleveland, Paris and Tokyo, and with major German radio symphony orchestras. After his débuts with the Berlin, Vienna and New York Philharmonic Orchestras and the Concertgebouw Orchestra in Amsterdam, he has finally reached Olympian rank. The conductors he works with include Herbert Blomstedt and Philippe Herreweghe, Marek Janowski and Vladimir Jurowski, Emmanuel Krivine and David Afkham, Andris Nelsons und Andrés Orozco-Estrada, Michael Sanderling, David Zinman, and above all, his longtime collaborator and supporter, Christoph von Dohnányi. Martin Helmchen is particularly attentive to the field of chamber music – a passion which was particularly stimulated by Boris Pergamenschikow. Among Helmchen’s most frequent chamber music partners are his wife, Marie-Elisabeth Hecker, Juliane Banse, Matthias Goerne, Veronika Eberle, Julia Fischer, Sharon Kam, and Christian Tetzlaff; and since 2010 he has also been teaching chamber music at the celebrated Kronberg Academy. Martin Helmchen has recorded for the Alpha Classics label since 2016.