Dubbed by critics as "A wizard of percussion", Austrian multi-percussionist Martin Grubinger has achieved the extraordinary feat of turning solo percussion into the highlight of the classical concert world. A regular guest at many of the top orchestras and the world\'s most prestigious venues, Grubinger’s repertoire is unusually broad and ranges from solo works and chamber music, with partners including his own Percussive Planet Ensemble and pianists Ferhan and Ferzan Önder, to percussion concertos.
Amongst the growing number of works especially written for Grubinger are Avner Dorman’s “Frozen in Time” (2007) and Friedrich Cerha’s Concerto for Percussion and Orchestra (2008), performed and recorded with the Wiener Philharmoniker under the baton of Peter Eötvös on Kairos, as well as Tan Dun’s concerto, “Tears of Nature” (2012). His well known percussion projects “The Percussive Planet” and the recently premiered “Caribbean Showdown” are examples of his versatility.
Highlights of the current season include premieres of HK Gruber’s new concerto “Into the Open” and Peter Eötvös’ “Speaking Drums – Four Poems for percussion solo and orchestra”. Additionally, Martin will debut with the NSO Washington and embark on a number of high-profile tours with the Wiener Philharmoniker, Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, BBC Philharmonic, Mahler Chamber Orchestra and the Camerata Salzburg amongst others, with performances throughout Europe.
Martin was named Artist in Residence at the 2008/09 Leipzig Gewandhaus, followed by residences with the Camerata Salzburg, at the Philharmonie Köln, Philharmonie München and Wiener Konzerthaus. Martin Grubinger has also appeared with NHK Symphony Orchestra, Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra of Taiwan, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, NDR Sinfonieorchester Hamburg and NDR Radiophilharmonie Hannover, Münchner Philharmoniker, Hamburger Philharmoniker and Dresdner Philharmoniker, Orquesta Sinfónica de Castilla y León, Wiener Philharmoniker, Bamberger Symphoniker and the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia. In 2011, the multi-percussionist made his US debut with the Kansas City Symphony, followed by his debut with the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra and Christoph Eschenbach.
Regular guest appearances have led him to the Rheingau and Schleswig-Holstein Music festivals, Bregenz Festival, Beethoven Festival in Bonn and Salzburg Festival, Baden-Baden Festspielhaus, the Brass & Percussion Festival in Tokyo’s famous Suntory Hall and the Grant Park Music Festival in Chicago. In 2013 he was ‘Artiste étoile’ at Lucerne Festival.
Winner of multiple prizes, Martin Grubinger is recipient of the Bernstein Award from the Schleswig Holstein Musik Festival and the prestigious Jeunesses Musicales’ Würth Prize. Grubinger’s first CD, "Drums ‘n’ Chant" (released in October 2010) was soon followed by a live recording of "The Percussive Planet" on DVD, both for Deutsche Grammophon. He has since recorded a number of projects for various labels.
Born in Salzburg, Martin Grubinger studied at the Bruckner Conservatory in Linz and at the Salzburg Mozarteum. He had already garnered attention in his youth, having appeared at several international competitions, amongst others at the second World Marimbaphone Competition held in Okaya, Japan, and at the EBU Competition in Norway.