All sounds fresh and vibrant in the hands of one of the most versatile violinists of the moment
Philippe Graffin strikes me as today’s quintessential French violinist
American Record Guide
Philippe Graffin, whose elegant, emotionally charged playing is strongly reminiscent of the young Menuhin and whose understanding of the idiom seems to be second to none
En digne héritier de la grande école française de violon
La Lettre du Musicien
Graffin’s performances are especially remarkable for their breathtaking virtuosity, profound lyricism and expressive freedom
It’s always rewarding to encounter a musician of the calibre and risk-taking flair of Philippe Graffin… In short he always makes you listen
Philippe Graffin is Professor at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique, Paris (CNSM) and Guest Professor at the Brussels Royal Conservatoire (Koninklijk Conservatorium Brussel).
Philippe Graffin has made a film about Ysaÿe and his exciting discovery, announced in 2018, of a previously unknown sonata by the composer
‘En digne hériter de la grande école française de violon, il fait montre d’un timbre clair et raffiné’.
La Lettre du Musicien, 22 mars 2016
Salle Adyar, Paris
‘Graffin tacked its virtuoso challenges with élan, rattling off double-stops, quicksilver runs and little cadenzas with playing of great personality’
The Strad, May 2015
English Chamber Orchestra, Cadogan Hall London (première of Peter Fribbins concerto)
‘Philippe Graffin .. investit la Première Sonate (1879) de Brahms avec beaucoup de naturel et de maitrise: vivante et fluide, avec juste ce qui’il faut d’hedonisme dans le Vivace ma non troppo, l’interpétation suspend le temps et creuse très profound dans l’Adagio, avant de livrer un Finale frémissant.’
Salle Gaveau, Paris 5 Dec 2011
Philippe Graffin has gained a reputation in the French violin repertoire and has special affection for the works of British composers. He has commissioned or been the dedicatee of many contemporary works.
Invited to make his first recording by Yehudi Menuhin, Philippe’s discography now includes over thirty concertos including many world premières such as that of Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, a work he performed at the BBC Proms. His recording of the Saint-Saëns concertos was the first volume of Hyperion’s ‘Romantic Violin’ series.
He has performed with many of Europe’s finest symphony orchestras and has strong relationships with many chamber orchestras. He tours regularly in South Africa, with the orchestras of Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban.
In recital he has performed at Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw, the Palazetto Bru-Zane in Venice and London’s Wigmore Hall among others and for series such as France’s Concerts du Poche and Rive Gauche Musique. He was the founding artistic director of the ‘Consonances’ festival in Saint-Nazaire throughout its 25-year history. Graffin curated ‘Ysaÿe’s Knokke’, a festival in the town in which Ysaÿe had his summer residence; the 2nd edition takes place in 2019. Following the success of his project in with Gerard Depardieu in Brussels in 2017, in January 2019 Graffin started a new multi-venue festival in the city, ‘Traces’.
A former pupil of Josef Gingold, Philippe now gives masterclasses throughout Europe himself and is a professor at the Paris and Brussels Conservatoires.