Born in Breslau, Germany (today Wroclaw, Poland), Christoph Eschenbach studied piano with Professor Eliza Hansen and won in his young age numerous piano competitions. In 1965 the first prize of the Clara Haskil competition in Luzern was the original event of his soloist carrier. In demand worldwide by famous concert halls and orchestras, he met George Szell who invited him to tour with the Cleveland orchestra. In the same period Christoph Eschenbach developed a great artistic collaboration with Herbert von Karajan as well. Successful conducting studies passed in Hamburg and the influence of Szell and Karajan, the two mentors, naturally led him to initiate his carrier as a conductor. He began in 1972, and made his debut in the USA in 1975 with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra. Nowadays Christoph Eschenbach is in demand as a distinguished guest conductor with the finest orchestras and opera houses throughout the world, as well as prestigious festivals (Salzbourg, Tanglewood, Ravinia, Saint Petersburg, Granada, Rheingau, Schleswig Holstein, etc.). His grand classic repertoire is ranging from J.S. Bach to music of our time and reflect his commitment to not just canonical works but also to the music of the late 20th and early 21st century.
For Christof Eschenbach, to transmit and to discover are fundamental activities, this is why he holds masterclasses (Manhattan School of Music, Kronberg Academy, CNSM of Paris) and collaborates with summer academies and youth orchestras such as the Schleswig Holstein Academy Orchestra, the Gustav Mahler Jugendorchester (GMJO) and the Curtis Institute.
Christoph Eschenbach has received the 2014 Grammy Award for his recording of works by Hindemith performed with the NDR Symphony Orchestra and the violinist Midori. He had the honor to be named Chevalier of the French Légion d’Honneur in January 2003, Officer of the National Order of Merit in May 2006 and decorated with the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany. He has been made French Commandeur dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres and received the Leonard Bernstein award of the Pacific Music Festival. In June 2015 he received the Ernst von Siemens Music Awards (described as the ‘Nobel Prize’ for music) in honour of his life’s dedication to music.
Special Projects in Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Finland