Photo © Kobie van Rensburg
Jory Vinikour is recognized as one of the outstanding harpsichordists of his generation. A highly diversified career brings him to the world's most important festivals and concert halls as recital and concerto soloist, partner to several of today's finest artists.
Born in Chicago, Jory Vinikour came to Paris on a Fulbright scholarship to study with Huguette Dreyfus and Kenneth Gilbert. First Prizes in the International Harpsichord Competitions of Warsaw (1993) and the Prague Spring Festival (1994) brought him to the public's attention, and he has since appeared in festivals and concert series throughout much of the world.
A concerto soloist with a repertoire ranging from Bach to Poulenc to Nyman, he has performed as soloist with leading orchestras including Rotterdam Philharmonic, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Lausanne Chamber Orchestra, Philharmonic of Radio France, Ensemble Orchestral de Paris, Netherlands Chamber Orchestra, MDR Symphony Orchestra, Cape Town Symphony Orchestra, Moscow Chamber Orchestra, and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, with conductors such as Stéphane Denève, Martin Haselböck, Marek Janowski, Armin Jordan, Benjamin Levy, Fabio Luisi, Marc Minkowski, John Nelson, Gordan Nikolic, Constantine Orbelian, Victor Yampolsky, et al. He participated in a recording of Frank Martin's Petite Symphonie Concertante with the Lausanne Chamber Orchestra under the direction of Armin Jordan (Suisse Romande, 2005).
Well-known as an accompanist, he has worked extensively with artists such as David Daniels, Hélène Delavault, Vivica Genaux, Magdalena Kozená, Annick Massis, Marijana Mijanovic, Dorothea Röschmann, and Rolando Villazón. He has accompanied legendary Swedish mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter in recitals in Sweden, Norway, Spain and Paris and at Milan's Teatro alla Scala. With lutenist Jakob Lindberg, their programme of English and Italian music of the 17th Century, entitled Music for a While, was released by Deutsche Grammophon in early 2005.
As an active exponent of contemporary repertoire for the harpsichord, he has given the premieres of works by composers such as Harold Meltzer and Frédéric Durieux, Stephen Blumberg, Patricia Morehead, Graham Lynch, etc. written for him. He has also given important performances of works by Ligeti and Michael Nyman, as well as several 20th century concerti, including Cyril Scott's 1937 Harpsichord Concerto, which Mr. Vinikour prepared and edited for Novello Editions. Sono Luminus released his recording of 20th century (and beyond) American harpsichord works in late 2013.
Mr. Vinikour appears regularly as harpsichordist at the finest opera houses and festivals in Europe: Paris Opera, Netherlands Opera, Salzburg Festival, Teatro Real de Madrid, Baden-Baden, Glyndebourne, etc. in Baroque and Classical repertoire, as well as in more contemporary works (notably Stravinsky's The Rake's Progress and Zimmermann's Die Soldaten) and is heard on many recordings from Deutsche Grammophon, EMI, Erato, Sony Classics et al.
His recording of Bach's Goldberg Variations, released on Delos International in 2001 received excellent reviews throughout the world. John von Rhein of the Chicago Tribune named it as one of 2001's top ten classical CDs, an honor that was also accorded to Mr. Vinikour's recording of Bach's Toccatas in 1999. Mr. Vinikour's 2009 Delos release of Handel's 1720 Suites for Harpsichord has received wide critical acclaim (American Record Guide naming it the finest recording of these works). Partnering with flautist Joshua Smith, their recording of Bach's sonatas for flute and harpsichord is garnering attention from around the world. His debut recording for Sono Luminus, the complete harpsichord works of Jean-Philippe Rameau, was nominated for a Grammy® award, in the category of Best Classical Solo Instrumental Recording in 2012.
Recent appearances include his debut as conductor/soloist with the Hong Kong Philharmonic, as well as an appearance with the Chicago Lyric Opera in Handel's Rinaldo - earning exceptional praise from the press. He performed Poulenc's Concert Champêtre with the Nertherlands Radio Chamber Orchestra, under Benjamin Levy's direction. Mr. Vinikour directed the Korea Chamber Orchestra (Seoul) in an all-Bach programme in May, 2012, and was guest director of musicAeterna (based in Perm, Russia) in a mixed programme, and has co-directed (with violinist Monica Huggett) Juilliard415 Baroque Orchestra at Carnegie Hall, accompanying soprano Dorothea Röschmann and counter-tenor David Daniels. Mr Vinikour has given master-classes for Rocky Ridge (Colorado) Music Center, the Austrian Baroque Academy in Gmunden, Austria; the European Academy at the Palazzo Ricci Montepulciano; the University of Chicago, the Gnessin Academy, and the Tchaikowsky Conservatory.
[Revised 14 November 2014]