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Raphaela Gromes
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Biography

Raphaela Gromes captivates her audience with her technically brilliant, versatile and delightful play: “With the first sound she creates incredible intimacy, her performance being very private, not one note being just 'made'”, this is how the “Süddeutsche Zeitung” describes her appearance: “Gromes inspires with her bliss, pairs earthiness with feathery excursions….and creates moments of pure poetry.” Raphaela Gromes’ appearances with her duo partner at the piano, Julian Riem, are being celebrated as perfect duets. She released her highly praised first Sony Classical album “Serenata Italiana” with works by Italian late Romantic composers Julian Riem in 2017. The album achieved worldwide critical acclaim. Gromes´ second album „Hommage à Rossini“ (November 2018) and her third album with music by Jacques Offenbach,  released in May 2019 for the 200th anniversary of the composer became bestsellers and received 5 star reviews. For the Offenbach album Raphaela Gromes and Julian Riem received the “Prize of the German Record Critics” and the Opus Klassik Award 2020. On  “Richard Strauss – Cello Sonatas” , the fourth album (Feb 2020),  Raphaela Gromes presented a world premiere recording, the original version of the Strauss Sonata op.6. The recording of “Romantic Cello Concertos” by Schumann and Klengel with RSB Berlin received a Diapason d´Or. “Imagination” will be released in fall 2021. Raphaela Gromes acts internationally as SOS Children’s Villages Ambassador and Ambassador for the José Carreras leukemia foundation.

Born in 1991, Raphaela Gromes starts taking cello-lessons at the age of four. Her first appearance as soloist was in 2005 with Friedrich Gulda’s cello-concerto and was highly acclaimed both by the audience and the press. At the age of 14 she took up her studies at the University of Music and Theatre “Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy” Leipzig as extraordinary student with Peter Bruns. She continued her studies in 2010 at the University of Music and Performing Arts Munich with Wen-Sinn Yang, later on with Reinhard Latzko at the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna. She received valuable input from the master classes with David Geringas, Yo-Yo Ma, Frans Helmerson, Natalia Gutman, Jens Peter Maintz, László Fenyö, Daniel Müller-Schott, Kristin von der Goltz, Wolfgang Boettcher, Anner Bylsma and Wolfgang Emanuel Schmid. Previous engagements include music festivals like the Schleswig-Holstein Festival, the Ludwigsburg Festival, the Rheingau Music Festival and the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Festival. Raphaela Gromes also performed in prestigious concert halls such as the Tonhalle Zurich, the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, the Laeiszhalle in Hamburg, the Konzerthaus Berlin and the Vienna Konzerthaus. In spring 2018, she made her debut in the USA with the Fort-Worth Symphony Orchestra conducted by Miguel Harth-Bedoya.

Raphaela Gromes has already won numerous prizes, among them the first prize in the Competition Richard Strauss, a scholarship of the Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes (German National Merit Foundation), and the first prize in the cello solo competition of the German Music Council in 2016. In 2019 she was awarded the Prize of the German Record Critics for her Offenbach release and the Bavarian Art Promotion Prize. Raphaela Gromes’ cello was built by Jean-Baptiste Vuillaume in 1855 and is provided by a private benefactor.

Current album

Imagination

Artists Raphaela Gromes

Release Date: 10/08/2021

IMAGINATION – the sixth album by Opus Klassik winner Raphaela Gromes takes listeners on a romantic, virtuoso and musical journey into the world of fantasy. With her soulful and brilliant performance, the young cellist conjures up powerful images before the eyes and ears of listeners. Raphaela Gromes chose works for her musical journey around the world by composers from Germany, Switzerland, the Czech Republic, Russia, Hungary, France, the US and Canada.

Several of the most beautiful and well-known works from the classical repertory were newly arranged for IMAGINATION, including the Sleeping Beauty Waltz by Tchaikovsky, the Flight of the Bumblebee by Rimsky-Korsakov, the Scherzo from Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Dvořák’s yearning-filled Song to the Moon, Humperdinck’s magical Evening Prayer from the opera Hansel and Gretel, as well as some tracks from famous movie soundtracks, like Bag End from Lord of the Rings and Leia’s Theme from Star Wars. All in all, 17 imaginative, poetic and highly virtuoso pieces are included on IMAGINATION. Many of the works chosen are from the world of fairy tales. To reflect the vivid colours of the pieces on the album arranged by pianist Julian Riem, Gromes invited many of her friends to collaborate on the album, including violinist Daniel Dodds, harpist Anaïs Gaudemard and the Arcis Saxophone Quartet.

Raphaela Gromes also interprets Franz Liszt’s Dance of the Gnomes and David Popper’s Dance of the Gnomes and Dance of the Elves on IMAGINATION. On this album, the young concert artist also surprises once again with compelling and rarely heard works such as Märchenstunde (Fairy Tale Hour) by Margarete Schweikert, born in Karlsruhe in 1887 – and, in collaboration with the “Frau und Musik” Archives in Frankfurt, Märchen (Fairy Tale) by Paul Juon and Pohadka by Leos Janaček, both originally composed for cello and piano. A thrilling rendition of Forgotten Fairy Tales by Edward MacDowell (1860–1908) also awaits listeners.

Raphaela Gromes is an international cultural ambassador of the SOS Children’s Villages and an ambassador of the José Carreras Leukaemia Foundation. In 2020 she won the prestigious German Opus Klassik award in the Chamber Music Recording Duo category. As part of the IMAGINATION project, in July of 2021 she invited refugee children from Syria, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Nigeria to play music with her and make drawings of their dreams.