Harpsichordist Mahan Esfahani for Camerata concert

Posted on September 21, 2010

Harpsichord player Mahan Esfahani is joining Manchester Camerata for three concerts – 25 November in Colne, 27 November in Manchester and 2 December in Ulverston.

Mahan Esfahani
 is currently the first harpsichordist to be named a BBC New Generation Artist and to be a member of the roster of the Borletti-Buitoni Trust. He’s fast gaining international recognition as a soloist and collaborative artist on the harpsichord, fortepiano and organ in both early and contemporary repertoire.  

Esfahani studied as a President’s Scholar at Stanford University, where his principal mentor was the musicologist George Houle; he went on to pursue his performance studies under the supervision of the Australian harpsichordist Peter Watchorn and the Italian organist Lorenzo Ghielmi before setting in the United Kingdom as Artist-in-Residence at New College, Oxford.

   Harpsichordist Mahan Esfahani

He has appeared at such series and venues as the BBC Proms, the Wigmore Hall, Dumbarton Oaks, the Tage Alter Musik Regensburg, Birmingham Town Hall, Manchester’s Bridgewater Hall, Glasgow City Halls, Goettingen Handel Festival, Halle Handel Festival, Settimana Mozart of Milan, Festwoche Herrenhausen of Hannover, Collection of Musical Instruments at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art, Fondazione Giorgio Cini of Venice, Montisi Festival, Milan’s Basilica di San Marco, Berkeley Early Music Festival, the San Francisco Early Music Society, Los Angeles’ Da Camera Society, Gotham Early Music at New York’s Times Center, and many other concert seasons both in the U.S. and Europe, and as a concerto soloist and collaborative musician with such ensembles as The English Concert, Il Complesso Barocco, the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, and the BBC National Orchestra of Wales.

In 2009, Mahan Esfahani was honoured with a fellowship prize of the prestigious Borletti-Buitoni Trust.

Listen to Manchester Camerata Podcasts   Mahan Esfahani talks about the harpsichord and its place in the recital room and on larger stages, and discusses why he is lucky to lay claim to the works of Bach in his concerts.

Mahan Esfahani believes harpsichordists are some of the luckiest musicians in the world:

“I think as harpsichordists, we can take comfort in the knowledge that we get the greatest composer in the world, Bach, and Bach is universal.”

But he candidly believes the truth of Bach and his music is beyond the ability of one player to understand:

“If I had a lifetime of dealing with someone like Bach, and I looked back on it and thought – you know I still don’t really understand him – I’d say that that was a life that’s been well spent. That’s the nature of anything that’s berautiful and complex. Its not worth it because it’s complex, it’s because it says something.”

More about the Baroque in Dresden concert in Colne 25 November 2010

More about the Baroque in Dresden concert at the RNCM in Manchester on 27 November 2010

More about the Baroque in Dresden concert in Ulverston on 2 December 2010