Philippe Cassard trained with Dominique Merlet and Geneviève Joy-Dutilleux at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris. In 1982 he was awarded Premiers Prix in piano and chamber music. He rounded out his experience for two years at the Hochschule für Musik in Vienna and then received guidance from the legendary Nikita Magaloff. A finalist at the Clara Haskil Competition in 1985, he won First Prize at the Dublin International Piano Competition in 1988.
Since then he has been invited to appear with the leading European orchestras (London Philharmonic, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, BBC Philharmonic, Orchestre National de France, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse, Budapest Philharmonic, Danish Radio Orchestra, among others), playing under the direction of such conductors as Sir Neville Marriner, Marek Janowski, Sir Roger Norrington, Charles Dutoit, Yan-Pascal Tortelier, Armin Jordan and Vladimir Fedoseyev.
His taste for chamber music and the voice has led him to collaborate with eminent artists like Christa Ludwig, Karine Deshayes, Angelika Kirchschlager, Wolfgang Holzmair, Michel Portal, David Grimal, Anne Gastinel, Cédric Pescia, and the Ébène, Modigliani, Voce and Hermès quartets. He forms a duo with the soprano Natalie Dessay, with whom he has given nearly eighty concerts in the most prestigious venues since 2012.
Philippe Cassard is one of the most popular voices on France Musique, on which he has presented more than 600 programmes since 2005. He has published two essays on Schubert and Debussy (Actes Sud).
Anne Gastinel won the first prize in cello at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Lyon (CNSM) in 1986 and was admitted to the CNSM de Paris in the same year. Yo-Yo Ma, János Starker and Paul Tortelier, with whom she did postgraduate studies and who were deeply to influence her personal and musical development, already recognised in her the maturity of a unique artist. She won numerous prizes at major international competitions (Scheveningen, Prague, Rostropovich) and began to perform throughout Europe, before reaching a wide public at the 1990 Eurovision Competition. Acknowledged by its finest exponents as the ambassador of the cello, she was chosen in 1997 by Marta Casals Istomin to play for one year the mythical Matteo Goffriller that belonged to Pablo Casals.
In 2006 she received the Victoire de la Musique in the category ‘Soloist of the Year’ (after previously winning the ‘Young Talents’ and ‘Best Recording’ trophies). She now travels the world’s finest concert halls alongside orchestras, musicians and composers, with whom she enjoys exchanging ideas. In the chamber repertory, she shares concert platforms with Claire Désert, the Quatuor Hermès, Nicholas Angelich and Andreas Ottensamer, David Grimal and Philippe Cassard, Xavier Phillips and Les Violoncelles Français. A Professor at the CNSMD de Lyon since 2003, Anne Gastinel plays a Testore cello of 1690.
‘One realises, listening to David Grimal, that a large part of the beauty of his musical gesture comes from a unique ability to question his art.’ ARTE
David Grimal is a musician who enjoys an international reputation for the originality of his musical career. In his tireless quest to reflect on the role of his art in society, he juxtaposes perspectives in order to make music differently by reinventing the sense of the collective.
He is invited to perform with the leading conductors and the most prestigious orchestras in the world’s foremost venues. David Grimal is the creator of ‘Les Dissonances’, the only symphony orchestra in the world that regularly plays the standard repertory without a conductor.
As an artistic director, he has developed the concept ‘Let’s play together!’ based on his experience with Les Dissonances. David Grimal rehearses the entire concert programme with the musicians in order to prepare them to play without a conductor at the concert. He then shares the platform with them by performing a concerto.
He is a sought-after pedagogue, and currently teaches at the Hochschule für Musik in Saarbrücken, where he also develops conductorless projects with the student orchestra.
David Grimal is regularly invited to sit on the juries of international competitions and gives masterclasses all over the world.