Jose Franch-Ballester, clarinet

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 Audio Clips
   POULENC: Clarinet Sonata, III. Allegro con fuoco
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   BRAHMS: Clarinet Sonata, op. 120 no. 2,
       III. Andante con moto - Allegro

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   PIAZZOLA - Le Grand Tango
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Spanish clarinetist Jose Franch-Ballester is a captivating performer of “poetic eloquence” (The New York Sun) and “technical wizardry” (The New York Times).  A soloist and chamber music artist in great demand, he plays regularly with The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, at the Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival, with Camerata Pacifica, Chamber Music Northwest, the Saratoga Chamber Music Festival, the Skaneateles Festival, and at the Music from Angel Fire Festival in New Mexico.  He has also appeared at the Usedomer Musikfestival in Germany, the Verbier Festival in Switzerland, the Cartagena Festival Internacional de Música in Colombia, and the Young Concert Artists Festival at Nexus Hall in Tokyo, Japan.


This season Mr. Franch-Ballester tours with the Chamber Music Society; appears as soloist with the Wisconsin Philharmonic and the Louisiana Philharmonic; performs at the Kon-Tiki Festival in Norway, Music@Menlo, and the Mainly Mozart Festival; and appears in recitals across the country as well as in Spain.


As concerto soloist Jose Franch-Ballester has appeared with numerous orchestras including the Orchestra of St. Luke’s at Lincoln Center, the BBC Concert Orchestra, the Santa Barbara Chamber Orchestra, the Wisconsin Philharmonic and the Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra.  In Spain he has performed with the Orquesta de Radio y Television Española, the Orquesta Sinfonica Castellon and the Orquesta Cambra XXTeatro Monumental in Madrid.


Winner of the 2004 Young Concert Artists International Auditions, he was awarded the Claire Tow Prize which sponsored his New York debut and the Alexander Kasza-Kasser Prize which sponsored his debut at the Kennedy Center. In 2008, he won a coveted Avery Fisher Career Award.


As the “Revelation of the Year” in 2010 he was awarded Cannes’ Midem Prize for Classical Music, which aims to introduce the as yet unsigned recording stars of the future to the classical recording industry.  With members of Lincoln Center’s Chamber Music Society he has recorded Bartok’s Contrasts on the Deutche Grammophone label.


Mr. Franch-Ballester ‘s recitals have been at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, Iowa State University, the Buffalo Chamber Music Society, and at the Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts.  In 2004 he performed the world premiere of Jake Heggie’s Winter Roses with mezzo-soprano Frederica von Stade with Camerata Pacifica. 


Mr. Franch-Ballester has commissioned new music and worked with contemporary composer such as Kenji Bunch, Paul Schoenfield, Edgar Meyer, William Bolcom, George Tsontakis, and Kevin Puts, and has been a dedicated music educator, developing new audiences by playing countless educational concerts and workshops for young people and community audiences.


Born in Moncofa, Spain into a family of clarinetists and Zarzuela singers, Jose Franch-Ballester began clarinet lessons at the age of nine and graduated from the Joaquin Rodrigo Music Conservatory in Valencia.  He earned a Bachelor of Music degree from The Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia in 2005, where he studied with Donald Montanaro, and Pamela Frank.  

*[pronounced FrAHnk Bai-yess-TAIR]

BRUCH Concerto for Clarinet and Viola
COPLAND Concerto
DEBUSSY Premiere Rhapsodie
ELLINGTON/FAGIN Ellingtonia, Suite for Orchestra and Clarinet
D. LOVREGLIO La Traviata Fantasy
J.M. MOLTER Concerto for D Clarinet
MOZART Concerto in A Major, K. 622
NIELSEN Concerto, op. 57
ROSSINI Introduction, Theme, and Variations
SPOHR Concerto No. 3 in F minor, WoO19
K. STAMITZ Concerto No. 3 in B-flat Major
WEBER Concerto No. 1 in F Minor, Op. 63
Concertino, Op. 26

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PHOTO CREDIT:  Lisa-Marie Mazzucco

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