“Barenboim makes it all sound easy, though, with performances spilling over with life and drama. Every work’s soul has been ignited and revealed, every second telling a story, all unmarred by a single glitch in intonation or articulation […] this is indisputably exciting playing across an indisputably effective programme.” – Gramophone
Michael Barenboim’s 1995 performance of Schoenberg’s Violin Concerto with Pierre Boulez in the Cologne Philharmonie was the beginning of a remarkable career. Following this celebrated debut, he has since performed the Schoenberg concerto with the Vienna Philharmonic under Daniel Barenboim, the Chicago Symphony under Asher Fisch, the Israel Philharmonic under Zubin Mehta, and the Berlin Philharmonic under Vasily Petrenko. Michael regularly gives solo recitals in the world’s most prestigious concert halls, such as Wigmore Hall in London, the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg, the Sydney Opera House, and Teatro di San Carlo in Naples. He presented a program with works by Pierre Boulez in Carnegie Hall, the Berlin Philharmonie, the Opéra National de Paris, the Barbican Centre in London, the Dortmund Konzerthaus, and the Salzburg Festival.
As a member of the Boulez Ensemble, Michael has premiered numerous new works by composers such as Jörg Widmann, Kareem Rouston, and many others. He is a professor for violin and chamber music at the Barenboim-Said Akademie in Berlin, and has since 2020 been the academy’s Dean. In addition, he and seven other selected members of the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra founded the West-Eastern Divan Ensemble in 2020 and were able to complete a 13-concert tour of the USA shortly before the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic. Among Michael’s last solo performances before the lockdown were Alban Berg’s Violin Concerto with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic under Robert Trevino and Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 1 with the Los Angeles Philharmonic under Gustavo Dudamel.
Michael Barenboim’s first solo album featured compositions by Bach and Bartók as well as Boulez’s Anthèmes 1 & 2. In 2018 there followed a CD with works by Tartini, Berio, Paganini, and Sciarrino. For Deutsche Grammophon, Michael has recorded the Mozart piano quartets and trios as well as the complete Beethoven piano trios – together with Kian Soltani and Daniel Barenboim.