Jesús Castro-Balbi, cello
Hailed as “an exceptional cellist” (Dallas Morning News), “an artist of the first rank, who commanded a huge range of volume, timbre and emotions” (Fort Worth Star Telegram), and praised for his “rich and warm tone, with lots of variety of inflection and nuance” (New York Concert Review), cellist Jesús Castro-Balbi brings a dynamic presence to the international stage, as a much sought-after soloist, recitalist, chamber musician, mentor, and adjudicator.
Performance highlight include features at the Lincoln Center Festival, Symphony Space and 12 appearances at Carnegie Hall in New York City, five visits to China, concerts at Leipzig’s famed Gewandhaus, and at prestigious venues in Colombia, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Korea, Latvia, Mexico, and Peru, in recitals and as a soloist with the Aarhus, Aguascalientes, Cannes, Dallas, Fort Worth, Leipzig MDR, and Xalapa Symphony Orchestras, the Mexico City and the UNAM Philharmonic Orchestras, and the National Symphony in Lima.
His favorite repertoire spans from the Bach Solo Suites, concerti by Haydn and Boccherini, the great romantics Dvorak and Elgar, to modern masters Dutilleux and Lutoslawski, while reserving a special place to chamber music and new music. To date, he appears in 16 compact discs and has presented 47 world premiere performances and recordings, including of 20 works written for him by Esteban Benzecry, Martin Blessinger, Blaise Ferrandino, Robert Garwell, Luis-Jorge Gonzalez, Till Meyn, Andrés Posada, Robert Rodríguez, Edgar Valcárcel, and Samuel Zyman. In 2014-14, he premieres Lord of the Air, a new concerto for cello and orchestra written for him by Jimmy Lopez, and records it with the Norwegian Radio Orchestra and Miguel Harth-Bedoya for Harmonia Mundi. Jesús Castro-Balbi is the cellist of the Lin / Castro-Balbi Duo, of the Clavier Trio, and of the music project Caminos del Inka. Among other distinctions, Mr. Castro-Balbi is the winner of the Aldo Parisot Prize, the Salon de Virtuosi Award in New York, and of the First Prize at the Carlos Prieto International Cello Competition.
Jesús Castro-Balbi is the first full-time cello professor at the Texas Christian University School of Music in Fort Worth, Texas, where he has developed a first rate studio of talented cellists from around the world. At TCU, he is also the founding artistic director of the TCU Cello Ensemble, the biennial TCU Cellofest, and of the Faculty & Friends Chamber Music Series. He received the 2008 Dean’s Research and Creativity Award and the 2012 College of Fine Arts Award for Distinguished Achievement as a Creative Teacher and Scholar. In addition to his work at TCU, he presents master-classes and lectures at Beijing’s Central Conservatory, The Juilliard School, Paris Conservatoire, Leipzig’s Hochschule, at the Yale School of Music, and teaches at Conservatory Music in the Mountains in Durango, Colorado, where he is also Associate Dean. He has adjudicated for the Sphinx Competition, the Carlos Prieto and the Lutoslawski International Cello Competitions.
Of Peruvian heritage, raised in France and now a US citizen, Jesús Castro-Balbi is a graduate of the Conservatoire National Supérieur at Lyon, Indiana University at Bloomington, Yale, and earned a Doctor of Musical Arts degree at The Juilliard School. He studied with Iseut Chuat, Marc Coppey, Jean Deplace, Aldo Parisot, Janos Starker, and members of the Amadeus, Borodine, Juilliard, Ravel and Tokyo String Quartets. Please visit www.jcbcello.com and www.cello.tcu.edu.