Biography

Elisabeth Kufferath’s immense and varied repertoire is highlighted by contemporary works. She gave the world premiere of Peter Eötvös’s „Adventures of the Dominant Seventh Chord“ in the viola version and the German premiere of his violin solo „A Call“.
Composers Thorsten Encke, Geoffrey Gordon and Johannes X. Schachtner wrote works for both solo violin and solo viola specifically for her.
She gave the world premiere of Jan Müller-Wieland’s “Himmelfahrt”, a work for solo viola written for and dedicated to her, and the German premiere of Elliott Carter’s ‘Figment IV‘ for viola.
Currently, Moritz Eggert is composing the violin/viola concerto „Promethea“ for her, a work in which Elisabeth is playing both the violin and viola solo parts.
An inspiring collaboration with György Kurtág led to the world premiere of the revised version of the violin solo “For Eberhard Feltz 80” at the Hitzacker Festival in 2022. Elisabeth Kufferath has also collaborated with composers Jörg Widmann, Zeynep Gedizlioglu, Helen Grime, Libby Larsen, Georges Lentz, and Manfred Trojahn.

Praised by conductor and composer Heinz Holliger as “unquestionably one of the most interesting and influential string players of her generation,“ she is a player with a wide-ranging stylistic palate, and is coveted as both a chamber musician and soloist.

As a concerto soloist, she has appeared with orchestras including the WDR Symphony Orchestra Cologne, Münchener Kammerorchester, Ensemble Oriol, Kammerakademie Potsdam and the World Youth Symphony Orchestra and has collaborated with conductors including Heinz Holliger, Christoph Poppen, Gerard Schwarz, Paul Goodwin, and Bramwell Tovey.

It is astonishing, the way Kufferath pivots between free and fragile, from heavenly chirping tenderness to bearing the earth’s burdens, how many colors and even more nuance her playing expresses.Die Welt

During the 2022/2023 season, she performed Kaija Saariaho’s “Graal Théâtre” with the Helsingborg Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Daniel Cohen. She gave the US premiere of Albert Dietrich’s violin concerto with the Austin Symphony Orchestra and Peter Bay and performed Luciano Berio’s violin concerto “Corale” with the ensemble musica assoluta Hannover.

Elisabeth Kufferath has been invited to perform at Berliner Festwochen, Schleswig-Holstein Festival, Schwetzinger Festspielen, Helsinki Festival, Lucerne Festival, Heidelberger Frühling, and the Rosendal and Trondheim Festivals in Norway. She is a regular guest at the festival “Spannungen” in Heimbach, Germany.
Elisabeth has shared the stage with chamber music partners including Lars Vogt, Tabea Zimmermann, Kirill Gerstein, Sarah Maria Sun and Tamara Stefanovich. 

A member of the Tetzlaff String Quartet since its inception in 1992, Elisabeth Kufferath has performed on the stages of some of the most auspicious halls in Europe and the United States, including Philharmonie Hall in Berlin, Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Musikverein in Vienna, Carnegie Hall in New York, and the Library of Congress in Washington D.C.
In 2015 the Tetzlaff Quartet was awarded a Diapason d’Or de l’année for their recording of string quartets by Berg and Mendelssohn.

Elisabeth Kufferath‘s first solo album ‘Libero, fragile’ was released in 2017 on the GENUIN label. The disk features contemporary works for solo violin and viola and was nominated for a prize from German Record Critics’ Award. Her second solo violin/viola album “Two”, featuring works by B.A. Zimmermann, Thorsten Encke, Johannes Schachtner, and Peter Eötvös, was nominated for an Opus Klassik Award. klassik.com wrote: ‚With this tour de force, Elisabeth Kufferath proves herself to be among the most outstanding violinists of our time.’

Elisabeth Kufferath lives in Hannover, Germany with her family. She is Professor of Violin at the Hochschule for Music, Theater and Media in Hannover.
Both her violin and viola were built by the German luthier Stefan-Peter Greiner.

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