The Messenger’s powerful message of change

Helene Grimaud photo Mat Hennek

Photo © Mat Hennek

If Ukrainian composer Valentin Silvestrov is a remembrance of things past, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart reaches for what yet may come. This music reminds us of one of life’s great possibilities – that of change.

Listen to “The Messenger”

“I was always interested in couplings that were not predictable, in unusual combinations, because I feel as if certain pieces – even sometimes pieces by different composers – can shed a special light on to one another.” – Hélène Grimaud

The recording sessions took place at the start of this year at an historic Mozart site in Salzburg, the Great Hall of the University, where Grimaud was joined by the Camerata Salzburg. The album includes three works by Mozart: the unfinished Fantasia in D minor K 397, the famous Piano Concerto in D minor K 466 and the Fantasia in C minor K 475. Grimaud sees his use of the minor as suggestive of “confrontations with fate or destiny”. She now appreciates that there is more to his writing than Apollonian elegance and restraint, noting that it took her “many years of inner cultivation to fully recognise those burning, unpredictable currents rippling beneath the transcendental beauty”. Valentin Silvestrov’s ‘The Messenger – 1996’ offers both a response to and an echo of Mozart’s music – this idea of acknowledging and paying tribute to what has gone before is central to his art as a composer.

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Streaming Concert: Hélène Grimaud & Camerata Salzburg at Elbphilharmonie Hamburg

Hélène Grimaud conducts and interprets Mozart and Schumann

Stream is available until 4/13/2022 8:00 PM (GMT+2)


Hélène Grimaud headlines a spectacular evening with the illustrious Camerata Salzburg at the famed Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg!

Mozart did not write many works in minor tonalities, but those that he did were particularly impactful. They are also the ones that French pianist Hélène Grimaud most enjoys spending time with because they “provide a glimpse behind the mask of jollity that surrounds many of his famous works.” Selecting pieces that are all in minor keys yet composed during intensely creative periods in both Mozart’s and Schumann’s careers, Grimaud takes an insightful look at the composers and their popularity at the time. Grimaud’s performance in the beautiful hall of Hamburg’s Elbphilharmonie is a symbolic representation of an encounter with fate, where drama and tragedy meet, and an apt reminder that not all is as it seems.

Watch on DG Stage
DG Stage

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Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart:
Piano Concerto No. 20 in D Minor, K. 466
Symphony No. 40 in G Minor, K. 550

Robert Schumann:
Piano Concerto, Op. 54

Valentin Silvestrov:
The Messenger (For Piano solo)

Hélène Grimaud, piano
Camerata Salzburg
Giovanni Guzzo, violin and musical direction


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BR Klassik (Germany), 18 February 2022

Interview: BR Klassik (Germany)

Pianistin Hélène Grimaud verzichtet auf Flugreisen: “Ich bin stolz darauf” | BR-Klassik

München, Florenz, Paris – gerade tourt Hélène Grimaud quer durch Europa. Um bei ihren Reisen CO2 einzusparen, hat sich die Pianistin für das Auto als Transportmittel entschieden. Ihr Umweltengagement hört damit aber nicht auf. Da ist ja noch die Sache mit den Wölfen.


BR Klassik
Posted in Interviews, Press

New Year in Europe

Helene Grimaud - The Messenger 06

Photo: Mat Hennek

Hélène is touring in Europe all of January, February, March and beginning of April, playing with leading orchestras and performing solo recitals. The tour includes concerts in Switzerland, France, Germany, Luxembourg and Italy.

View her upcoming performances on her calendar page.


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US Tour 2021/2022

Helene Grimaud - The Messenger 05

Photo © Mat Hennek

On her upcoming US tour that includes three dates in Houston, TX (November 19, 20, 21), two in Seattle, WA (December 2 & 4), and two in Naples, FL (December 9 & 11) Hélène performs one of the greatest of all French masterworks, Ravel’s jazz-infused Concerto in G. From the opening whip crack to the mesmerizing second movement and a jaunty whirlwind of a finale, this is piano virtuosity at its most colorful and captivating. The tour concludes on January 9, 2022 with a recital featuring works by Frédéric Chopin, Claude Debussy, Valentin Silvestrov, and Erik Satie at San Francisco’s Davies Symphony Hall.

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