The Kennedy Center

Colin Currie


The leading percussionist of his generation and soloist of choice for composers from Steve Reich to Rautavaara, Colin Currie has been the driving force behind new percussion repertoire for more than a decade. Acclaimed for his virtuosity and musical integrity, Currie is a solo and chamber artist at the peak of his powers. Championing new music at the highest level, Currie has appeared with many of the world's leading orchestras, the Concertgebouw Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Philharmonia Orchestra and London Philharmonic among them.

Currie's "athletic percussionism, compulsive showmanship and deep musicality" (The Guardian) has inspired composers from around the globe, and forthcoming commissions include new works written for Currie by Elliott Carter, Kalevi Aho, Sally Beamish, Askell Masson, James MacMillan, Louis Andriessen and Steve Reich.

From his earliest years Currie forged a pioneering path in creating new music for percussion and he was awarded the Royal Philharmonic Society Young Artist Award in 2000 for his inspirational role in contemporary music-making. Recent projects include premieres by composers such as Simon Holt, Kurt Schwertsik, Jennifer Higdon and Alexander Goehr, among others.

The highlight of Currie's 2010/11 season is the world premiere of Elliot Carter's Conversations, a double concerto for Currie and Pierre-Laurent Aimard at the Aldeburgh Festival. Elsewhere, concerto highlights include a performance and recording of Einojuhani Rautavaara's Incantations with the Helsinki Philharmonic under John Storgards, a seven-concert tour with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, a new concerto by Joey Roukens at Rotterdam's De Doelen, as well as engagements throughout the US including at the Cabrillo Festival with Marin Alsop, Grand Teton Festival with Donald Runnicles and with the Indianapolis and Nashville Symphony Orchestras. Looking ahead, Currie will be Artist in Residence at London's Southbank Centre from the 11/12 season onwards.

Currie's dynamic percussion ensemble The Colin Currie Group performs Steve Reich's iconic "Drumming" across the UK during the 2010/11 season, including at the Southbank Centre's Ether Festival, the Cheltenham Festival, in Bristol and Reading, and will tour internationally in future seasons.  With trumpeter Hakan Hardenberger, Currie premieres a new recital programme in Aldeburgh, Hannover and the Far East including new commissions by Christian Muthspiel, Lucas Ligeti and Tobias Brostrom.  Other highlights of this season include performing Bartok with Stephen Kovacevich and Martha Argerich at the Wigmore Hall, collaborating with the Miro Quartet for concerts in the US and joining the Hebrides Ensemble to perform "The Axe Manual" by Harisson Birtwistle.
Colin Currie