Artistic Director — Philippe Graffin

Violinist Philippe Graffin has established an indisputable reputation for his interpretations of the French repertoire. Philippe made his first recording with Yehudi Menuhin conducting the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and his many highly acclaimed recordings since then bear witness to a questing mind and include many world premieres. He has rediscovered original settings of Chausson’s Poème and Ravel’s Tzigane and has championed the forgotten violin concertos of Fauré and the English composer Coleridge-Taylor which he has recorded and performed at the BBC Proms.

As concerto soloist, he has performed with orchestras such as The Philharmonia, BBC Symphony, and the BBC National Orchestra of Wales among many others. Graffin performs works of many living composers and has had works written for him by Rodion Shchedrin, Vytautas Barkaukas, David Matthews, Philippe Hersant and Yves Prin. New releases include the world premiere of the violin concerto of Finnish composer Tauno Marttinen, with the Turku Philharmonic, and a new recording of Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto, the first to include the cadenza by Ysaÿe, on a CD which also includes Prokofiev’s Five Melodies.

Over the years Philippe Graffin has felt a special interest and affinity with Enescu's music, Enescu being the teacher and mentor of lord Yehudi Menuhin with whom Philippe worked and made his first recording. Two CD albums, recorded together with pianist Claire Désert for Avie Records, are the result of his longtime exploration of Enescu, Debussy and Ravel's work. "In the shade of the forest" features rare original transcriptions by Debussy for violin and piano, a version of Ravel's "Tzigane" with lutheal, and Enescu's "Childhood impressions". "Fiddler's blues" premieres the newly discovered Ysaÿe's 7th solo sonata and some more rarities of Debussy, Enescu and Ravel, and is accompanied by a documentary, "Ysaÿe's secret sonata", available on YouTube.

Philippe is a highly sought after chamber musician and was founder and artistic director of the “Consonances”, a chamber music festival held in St Nazaire, France, which celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2015. He plays a Domenico Busano violin, made in Venice, 1730. In demand as a teacher, Philippe Graffin is a professor at the Paris Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique (CNSM) and at the Brussels Conservatoire Royal.