A Phenomenal Musician Being Herself
"Music making is not a sport, it is not about technique, speed, loudness or even perfection. Great music is also not about the outside world. It speaks where and when words end. It is about the soul, about inspiration, imagination, spirituality, truth and eternity. Otherwise it has no sense." - Patricia Kopatchinskaja
Violinist Patricia Kopatchinskaja’s versatility shows itself in her diverse repertoire, ranging from baroque and classical often played on gut strings, to new commissions and re-interpretations of modern masterworks.
Kopatchinskaja was born in Chișinău, Moldavian Soviet Socialist Republic, Soviet Union. She comes from a family of musicians; her parents were both musicians with the state folk ensemble of Moldova, with her mother Emilia Kopatchinskaja a violinist and her father Viktor Kopatchinsky a cimbalom player. While her parents were on concert tour through the former Eastern bloc, she grew up with her grandparents. She started playing the violin at age 6.
In 1989, the family emigrated to Vienna. Kopatchinskaja entered the University of Music and Performing Arts, Vienna at age 17, where she studied musical composition and violin. At age 21, she won a scholarship to study in Bern, at the Musikhochschule, where her teachers included Igor Ozim. Kopatchinskaja, her Swiss neurologist husband, and their daughter live in Bern, Switzerland. She plays a violin built by Giovanni Francesco Pressenda (Turin) in 1834.
Patricia Kopatchinskaja’s Death and the Maiden wins the 2018 GRAMMY award for Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble performance. The album is a live recording led by Patricia of a concert in which the movements of Schubert’s string quartet – in Kopatchinskaja’s own string-orchestra version – are interspersed with other music to surprising effect. The album was recorded with The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra and released in October 2016 on Alpha Classics.The 60th GRAMMY Awards show took place at New York City’s Madison Square Garden on 28 January 2018.
Kopatchinskaja’s 2017/18 season commences with the world premiere of her new project Dies Irae at the Lucerne Festival where she will be ‘artiste étoile’. Dies Irae is her second staged programme following the success of Bye Bye Beethoven with Mahler Chamber Orchestra in 2016, and uses the theme from the Latin Requiem Mass as a starting point for her new concept featuring music from Gregorian Chant and Early Baroque to Giacinto Scelsi and Galina Ustwolskaja. The North American premiere will take place at the Ojai Festival in June 2018 where Patricia will be Music Director.