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François Guerrier (Harpsichord, Organ)

Born: 1980 - Caen, France

The French harpsichordist and organist, François Guerrier, began learning the harpsichord and basso continuo at the Conservatoire national de région of Caen with Bibiane Lapointe and Thierry Maeder. He went on to study at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et de Danse de Paris (CNSMD) with Pierre Hantaï, Elisabeth Joyé, Christophe Rousset and Kenneth Weiss, where he obtained first prize in 2001. He also attended master-classes with Pierre Hantaï, Bob van Asperen, Blandine Verlet, Menno van Delft, William Christie, Barthold Kuijken, among others. During his studies he also taught himself to play the organ, attending master-classes with Michel Chapuis, specializing in the French classical repertoire of organ music. As a result, he is today one of the resident organists at the church of Notre-Dame-de-Guibray, in Falaise (Normandy). The organ there is a Claude Parisot dating back to 1746 and is one of the finest classical instruments in France. In 2006 he won 3rd Prize for harpsichord at the International Bach Competition in Leipzig.

François Guerrier has embarked on an exceptional career as harpsichordist, and has been remarked for his solo performances as well as for his chamber and vocal music. He is invited as a soloist to various festivals in France and abroad, such as the Festival of La Roque d'Antheron in Saintes, les Folles Journées de Nantes, Bilbao and Tokyo, the Early Music Festival of Birmingham, le Printemps des Arts de Nantes, La Bibliothèque de Mexico , the Festival of Lausanne, Montpellier, Auch, Bargème, etc.

François Guerrier performs in recitals and plays chamber music with artists as Aurélien Delage (traverso), Stéphanie-Marie Degand (violin) and Elisabeth Joyé (harpsichord). Christophe Coin, Philippe Pierlot, François Fernandez, among others. He is a member of the Ricercar Consort and Musical Humors, and has played with various other ensembles, including Ensemble Baroque de Limoges, Il Gardellino, Capriccio stravagante (Skip Sempé), le Cercle de l’Harmonie, Il Fondamento, La Simphonie du Marais, Opera Fuoco, Mercure galant (conductor: Serge Saitta), Cyclopes (Thierry Maeder), and the Salamandre ensemble of singers (specialized in Renaissance music). His ensemble activities have led him to play various music from the Renaissance to Classicism travelling in Europe, Japan, Korea or Mexico.

Passionate for vocal music, François Guerrier has given concerts with the ensemble Les Musiciens du Paradis (directed by A. Buet) or with singers Camille Poul, Damien Guillon and Isabelle Druet. He is also involved in opera productions by l’Opéra de Paris (Alcina), La Monnaie in Brussels and the Edinburgh Festival (The Return of Ulysses), the Festival d'Aix en Provence (The Infidelta delusa) and with Les Arts Florissants at the Jardin des Voix 2002.

François Guerrier also works with the Baroque dance group L’Eclat des Muses (Christine Bayle) and confesses that his interpretation of J.S. Bach’s Partitas has been nurtured by his regular collaboration with this group. He is quick to point out stresses that the Partitas draw their grace and energy from French dance suites, in spite of the rather stylized heritage of this genre. Indeed the Partitas form a privileged part of his repertoire. He played them for instance for the inauguration of his harpsichord in May 2003; they were also included in the programme of his first performance at the International Piano Festival of Roque-d’Anthéron in the summer of 2003.

François Guerrier was appointed repetiteur for the 2002 season of “Le Jardin des voix”, the academy of singers founded and conducted by William Christie. He teaches basso continuo and harpsichord at the Académie de Musique ancienne de Lisieux.

François Guerrier has already made several recordings, including a CD of works by François Couperin with Elisabeth Joyé (Alpha), and a CD of works by Mazzocchi with Jill Feldman and Kenneth Weiss (AS Musique). He recorded three of J.S. Bach's Partitas on Intrada label (Diapason découverte, Prix du Manoir de Pron) and he has also participated in several recordings of chamber music and orchestral music. He is also interested in making harpsichords, an art which responds to a double desire: to do woodwork and to discover the ancient secrets of harpsichord making. He works regularly with Philippe Humeau (Barbaste, near Toulouse) and Emile Jobin (Boissy-l’Aillerie, near Paris), and maintains several private collections of ancient harpsichords.

Source: Jeunes Talents Website, English translation by Aryeh Oron (November 2010); Liner notes to the CD “XV. Internationaler Johann-Sebastian-Bach-Wettbewerb, Leipzig 2006”; Intrada Website
Contributed by
Aryeh Oron (November 2010)

François Guerrier: Short Biography | Recordings of Instrumental Works




Philippe Pierlot


BWV 243 [2nd] [w/ Ricercar Consort]

Links to other Sites

François Guerrier (Jeunes Talents) [French]

Intrada: Artists

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