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Christian Benda
CELLIST / CONDUCTOR

Christian Benda appears worldwide in music centers such as Paris, London, Rome, Bucharest, Vienna, Warshaw, Prague, Budapest, Milan, Florence as well as Asia, North and South America.

After his debut with the Prague Symphony Orchestra, invitations follow with the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Moscow Virtuosi, Prague Chamber Orchestra, Stuttgart, Lausanne, Cannes Chamber
Orchestra, Orchestre de Chambre d?Audergne, Slovenian Philharmonic, Lviv Münster, Janacek Philharmonics, Belgrade Symphony, Shangai Broadcast Symphony, Ulster Orchestra, etc.

After a long collaboration with the Prague Chamber Orchestra, Christian Benda becomes also Chief Conductor and Artistic Director of the Prague Sinfonia Orchestra recently created by Vaclav Havel. With the Prague Sinfonia Orchestra he recorded the complete Schubert Overtures. 

A passionate of vocal repertoire, Benda conducts vocalists such as Barbara Hendricks, Cheryl Studer, Simon Estes, and Renee Fleming. With Barbara Hendricks, he toured repeatedly America, Europe and Asia. With Renée Fleming and the Prague Symphony Orchestra he has been invited to conduct the concerts in honor of President Vaclav Havel.

Among the artists having performed with him, we find Josef Suk, Vladimir Spivakov, Paul Tortelier, Norbert Brainin, Pierre Amoyal, François-René Duchâble, Marcello Viotti, Paul Badura-Skoda, Matthias Bamert, Milan Horvat, Bruno Giuranna, Yan-Pascal Tortelier, Thierry Fischer, Lazar Berman, Michel Béroff, Till Fellner, Michaïl Rudy, Cristina Ortiz, Boris Pergamenschikow. He performs regularly with actors, theatre and opera directors from the Wiener Schauspielhaus, Volkstheater and Comédie Française, such as Maddalena Crippa, Andrea Jonasson, Hertha Schell, Peter Uray, Brigitte Quadlbauer, Mercedes Echerer, Erika Pluhar, Jean-Luc Bideau and François Rochaix. 

Christian Benda's appearances at international festivals include Schwetzingen (Germany), Echternach (Luxembourg), La Roque d?Anthéron (France), Paris (Cité de la musique), Prague Spring, George Enescu Bucharest, Wratislavia Cantans (Poland), Campos do Jordao (Brazil), Hong Kong Arts, Klangbogen Wien and Wiener Festwochen, Styriarte and Steirischer Herbst (Austria), Menuhin Festival (Switzerland), Shanghai, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Rio de Janeiro, among others.

From Bach to the music of the 20st century Benda?s varied, worldwide broadcast discography includes the complete works for piano and orchestra by Frank Martin with Paul Badura-Skoda (Bestenliste der Deutschen Schallplattenkritik), Haydn?s violin concertos with Jean-Jacques Kantorow, works for clarinet and orchestra by Debussy, Rossini, Nielsen, and Busoni, J.S.Bach's Musical Offering, the Hamburg Symphonies by C.P.E. Bach, Stamitz' complete cello concertos, Schumann's complete cello works (concerto and works with piano), the complete cello and piano works by Martinu, Beethoven, Brahms (to be released), as well as sonatas by Debussy, Franck, Saint-Saëns, two volumes of Boccherini sonatas, chamber music with piano by Brahms and Schumann, together with symphonic works by Malipiero and Casella. Of particular interest are recordings by the Benda composers of the 18th century, notably Jiri Antonin Benda's symphonies and melodramas with the Prague Chamber Orchestra - together with two volumes of violin concertos by Frantisek and Jan Jiri with Josef Suk as soloist. 

The Czech Television produced a documentary film "The Benda family nowadays". Christian Benda's many video, radio and TV recordings include productions for the BBC, Radio Luxembourg, Radio France, ORF, Hessischer Rundfunk and SWR, Suisse Romande Radio and Television, Radio Svizzera Italiana, SF DRS Swiss German Television, TV Cultura (Brazil), as well as for the Czech, Polish, Slovenian, Serbian, Hungarian and Chinese televisions.

As a composer, Benda created the concept of micro-opera giving equal importance to the scenic and to the musical aspect. His compositions were premiered at the Wiener Konzerthaus and at the Smetana Hall in Prague with soprano Renee Fleming and have been filmed by the Czech Television during a concert in honor of President Vaclav Havel. His work "Ricercar Lux In Umbra" has been premiered in Switzerland. He has been commissioned to write the film music for Vojtech Jasny's next productions.

Benda received his first musical training within his family, where the musical tradition was maintained without interruption through centuries. During seven years he studied the cello with Pierre Fournier. Benda performs on a master cello by Jean-Baptiste Vuillaume.

He gives master classes at the Guildhall School of Music in London, the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique in Paris, the Maine University of Portland (USA), the Helsinki Conservatory, the Hochschule für Musilk Franz Liszt in Weimar (Germany). He has been working on a research project regarding the study of microtonal scales and intonation exercises for string quartet and wind players. He also studied the problematics of intonation between instrument and piano, the various temperaments, and the pedagogical applications of these elements. Consequently to the tremendous interest awakened by these studies, invitations followed to give courses and lectures at the Conservatorio della Svizzera Italiana, at the Musikhochschulen in Karlsruhe, Köln, Bratislava, Lodz (Poland), Salvador-Bahia (Brazil), Granada, Barcelona, as well as at the Cello Congresses in Washington DC and Belgrade.

Audio / VIdeo

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Web: www.christianbenda.com