An artist of “innate musicality” who possesses a technical execution that belongs “only to the greatest” (The Guardian), Hungarian violinist Barnabás Kelemen has captured the attention of the music world, most notably for his national or world premiere performances of music by Kurtág, Ligeti, Schnittke, Gubaidulina, Steve Reich and Ryan Wigglesworth, as well as for his recordings of Bartók’s complete works for violin. His seventeen solo recordings have won prestigious awards in England, France, Belgium, Germany and in his native Hungary.
As a soloist he regularly accepts return invitations to perform in the world’s most important concert venues, including Carnegie Hall, Royal Festival Hall, Concertgebouw, Suntory Hall, the Bozar, the Berlin Philharmonic and many others. He has collaborated with conductors such as Lorin Maazel, Sir Neville Marriner, Vladimir Jurowski, Marek Janowski, Michael Stern, Krzysztof Urbański, Péter Eötvös, Iván Fischer and Zoltán Kocsis.
He is also the recipient of numerous important prizes, among them the Kossuth Prize awarded by the state of Hungary and a Gramophone Award, in addition to top prizes at competitions from Salzburg and Brussels to Indianapolis.
He is the founder of the Kelemen Quartet, with whom he has won prizes at major festivals and concert venues from Australia to the United States and Europe.
Among his greatest musical influences he counts – after his mother, a noted harpsichordist – his teachers: Eszter Perényi, Isaac Stern, Ferenc Rados and Zoltán Kocsis, as well as his grandfather Pali Pertis, one of the most famous gypsy violinists of the 20th century. Barnabás Kelemen himself teaches at the Franz Liszt Academy in Budapest and at the University in Cologne. He plays on the “Ex-Dénes Kovács” Guarneri violin from 1742 on loan from the state of Hungary.