Leonard Elschenbroich has excited interest as one of the most charismatic cellists of his generation since receiving the Leonard Bernstein award at the opening concert of the 2009 Schleswig Holstein Festival, following his performance of the Brahms Double with Anne Sophie Mutter under the direction of Christoph Eschenbach. Since then, Leonard joined the BBC Radio 3 New Generation Artist scheme in 2012, a prestigious award offering performances and recordings with all the BBC orchestras and at the BBC Proms. In 2012, Leonard became Artistic Mentor of the Orquesta Filarmonica de Bolivia, the country’s first national orchestra. As Artistic Mentor, he performs regularly with the orchestra and invites international soloists and conductors to Bolivia.
He has worked with a number of eminent conductors, including Semyon Bychkov, Christoph Eschenbach, Charles Dutoit, Manfred Honeck, Kirill Karabits, Dmitri Kitajenko, Andrew Litton, Yan-Pascal Tortelier and Vasily Sinasiky. As a soloist he has performed with the London Philharmonic, Royal Philharmonic, WDR Symphony Orchestra, Konzerthaus Orchester Berlin, Swedish Radio Symphony, Basel Symphony Orchestra, Borusan Istanbul Philharmonic, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Stavanger Symphony, St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, Netherlands Philharmonic, Buenos Aires Philharmonic, Nagoya Philharmonic, Japan Philharmonic, BBC Philharmonic, BBC Symphony, National Symphony Orchestra Washington, Chicago Symphony Orchestra,. He made his debut at the Musikverein in Vienna with the Dresden Staatskapelle on a European tour. Leonard has performed at BBC Proms four times since 2012, most recently with the BBC Philharmonic and John Storgards, and in 2013 with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and Charles Dutoit.
This season he will embark on an 8-date tour with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, inaugurating the new Music Director, Edo de Waart. He will also debut with the Minnesota Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony, Northern Sinfonia, Aurora Orchestra, Brabants Orkest, Tasmanian Symphony, and return to the BBC Philharmonic, RTE National Symphony, Belo Horizonte Orchestra, and Medellin Philharmonic. Recital tours will include Berlin, Bremen, Perth, Miami, Lima, Rio, and Tokyo.
His debut CD (Rachmaninov Cello Sonata & Shostakovich Viola Sonata), released on Onyx Classics in 2013, received 5 star reviews from The Telegraph, The Guardian and BBC Music Magazine (Choice of the Month). Leonard releases his second disc for Onyx Classics in November 2014, featuring Kabalevsky’s Cello Concerto No.2, recorded live at the Concertgebouw with Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra and conductor Andrew Litton, and Prokofiev’s Cello Sonata with Alexei Grynyuk.
Leonard Elschenbroich has given recitals at the Wigmore Hall in London, the Auditorium du Louvre, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, at the Ravinia Festival in Chicago, the Lucerne Festival, the Gstaad Festival, the Istanbul International Festival, the Rheingau, Mecklenburg Vorpommern, and Schleswig Holstein Festival, where he performed the complete Beethoven sonatas with Christoph Eschenbach. On tour in South America, he has performed with the Buenos Aires Philharmonic at the Teatro Colon and given recitals in Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires, Montevideo, Lima and Sao Paulo.
Leonard is Artist-in-Residence at the Philharmonic Society Bremen from 2013-2016, the first artist ever to hold this position. Each season includes one commissioned world premiere. Leonard premiered Arlene Sierra’s new piano trio in November 2013. He is also Artist-in-Residence of Deutschlandfunk for 2014-15. He will make studio recordings with the Deutschlandradio and will perform at the opening concert of Musikfest Bremen.
Leonard plays chamber music regularly with Nicola Benedetti and Alexei Grynyuk, performing at the BBC Proms, Royal Albert Hall, Usher Hall, Hong Kong International Festival, Istanbul Festival, Sala Sao Paulo, and Ravinia Festival.
He has commissioned several new works, including: Luca Lombardi (Essay 3 for solo cello), Arlene Sierra (Butterflies Remember a Mountain for piano trio), Suzanne Farrin (…e riveder le stelle for cello and accordion) and Mark Simpson, whose piece, Night Music for cello and piano, was commissioned for Leonard by the BBC and performed and broadcast live at Wigmore Hall in March 2014. In 2017, Leonard will give the premiere of Mark Simpson’s first cello concerto, with the BBC Philharmonic and Juanjo Mena at Manchester’s Bridgewater Hall.
His many awards include: Leonard Bernstein Award, Förderpreis Deutschlandfunk, Borletti Buitoni Trust Award, Eugene Istomin Prize, Pro Europa prize, Landgraf von Hessen prize at the Kronberg Academy, Nordmetall Prize at the Mecklenburg Vorpommern Festival, Firmenich Prize at the Verbier Festival. Born in 1985 in Frankfurt, Leonard received a scholarship, aged ten, to study at the Yehudi Menuhin School in London. He later studied with Frans Helmerson at the Cologne Music Academy. He plays a cello made by Matteo Goffriller “Leonard Rose” (Venice, 1693), on private loan. Leonard Elschenbroich lives in London.