François-Frédéric GUY – Biography

Download the biography here – En français ici – In Deutsch hier

At the piano François-Frédéric Guy made mesmerising colours, erupting into shivery cascades and subterranean rumbles, a magician with sound. (The Times, Rebecca Franks, 18/05/2022)

Francois-Frederic Guy. Paris, France, 12/11/2015. Photo Caroline Doutre

As an outstanding interpreter of the music of German Romantics and their forebears as well as contemporary compositions, François-Frédéric Guy is pursuing a steady international career as both a soloist and as an orchestral conductor from the piano. Alongside great conductors such as Philippe Jordan, Kent Nagano, Daniel Harding and Esa-Pekka Salonen, he regularly works with renowned orchestras such as the Vienna Symphony, the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, the NHK Symphony Orchestra in Tokyo, or the Philharmonia Orchestra in London. Most recently, he has performed with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, the BBC Symphony Orchestra London, and the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande.

In the 2022/23 season he will play Beethoven as guest soloist with the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra under Marc Albrecht. He will interpret Messiaen’s Turangalîla Symphony with the SWR Symphony Orchestra under Brad Lubman, andBrahms is on the programme with the Orchestre National Bordeaux Aquitaine and Roberto González-Monjas. After François- Frédéric Guy premiered Tristan Murail’s new piano concerto L’oeil du cyclone with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France in 2022 and gave the British premiere with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, this season will see the German premiere with the NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra under Stefan Asbury in Hamburg as well as a performance in Croatia with the Zagreb Philharmonic under Pascal Rophé. He will conclude his several-season-spanning Beethoven sonata cycle at Kumho Art Hall in South Korea before presenting solo recitals of Debussy and Murail at Flagey Piano Days. As one of Wigmore Hall’s current portrait artists, he will also appear in London for four concerts.

Like few others, François-Frédéric Guy vividly realizes the compositional architecture of great works of the Classical and Romantic periods. He developed this ability particularly through his intensive dialogue with the music of Beethoven. His performances of the cycle of Beethoven’s 32 piano sonatas have already been celebrated worldwide. The pianist also has a special affinity for Bartók, Brahms, Liszt, and Prokofiev, as well as for contemporary music. He is closely associated with the composers Tristan Murail, Ivan Fedele, Marc Monnet, and Hugues Dufourt, among others.

François-Frédéric Guy regularly conducts Beethoven’s piano concertos as well as works by Mozart, Chopin, and Brahms from the piano and and he now also appears on the conductor’s podium. In the dual role as pianist and conductor, he has been working closely for several years with the Sinfonia Varsovia as well as with the Orchestre de chambre de Paris, with whom he was artist-in-residence from 2017 to 2020. Guest appearances have also taken him to the Orchestre Philharmonique Royal de Liège, the Orquesta Sinfónica de Tenerife, and the Orchestre national des Pays de la Loire. Since the autumn of 2021, he has held the musical direction of the Swiss ensemble Microcosme in Genève.

Solo recitals have taken him to major concert halls in London, Milan, Berlin, Munich, Moscow, Paris, Vienna, Amsterdam, and Washington, and to festivals such as the Chopin Festival Warsaw, the Beethovenfest Bonn, the Cheltenham Festival, or the Piano Festival in La Roque d’Anthéron. He was also artist-in-residence at the Arsenal de Metz from 2014 to 2017.

The centrepiece of his discography is the complete recording of the Beethoven sonatas for the Zig-Zag Territoires label, which had already released his highly acclaimed Liszt album with theHarmonies poétiques et religieuses. To kick off the “Beethoven Year 2020”, the complete recording of the Beethoven piano concertos under François-Frédéric Guy’s overall direction with the Sinfonia Varsovia was released. His 2017 Brahms album of the three piano sonatas was followed in spring 2021 by a recording of Brahms’s viola sonatas and trio. In the field of contemporary music, he presented his recording of Marc Monnet’s piano cycle « En Pièces »in early 2021; a CD with the music of Tristan Murail and the Préludes of Debussy followed in 2022. His new album « Secret Garden » dedicated to Chopin’s music is available since January 2023.