17–23 Nov
Johannes Gray, USA

   The US American Johannes Gray began playing the cello when he was just two years of age and made his debut with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra when he was only 14. He spent 11 years as an active member of the Music Institute of Chicago; his studies introduced him to musicians such as Jorgen Jensen and Gilda Barston.

   Born in 1997, the cellist – the youngest of the 12 Grand Prix participants – has been the recipient of awards at numerous competitions: in 2012 he won the Haydn Award and Audience Choice in the St Paul String Quartet Competition and first prize in the Jules M Laser Chamber Music Competition. In the following year he was placed second in the A N & Pearl G Barnett Chamber Music Competition and first in the New Trier High School Concerto Competition. Besides taking part in various competitions, Johannes Gray has appeared in concert as a cellist in Canada, Germany and Switzerland.

   Besides the traditional concert venues, Johannes Gray gives performances in state schools, retirement homes and public libraries. His repertoire extends from Beethoven through Brahms and Dvořák to rarely performed composers such a Victor Herbert, Heitor Villa-Lobos and Pablo Casals. As a chamber musician, he performs with well-known string quartets such as the Quartet Ventoso and the Quartet Stracciatella. With the latter quartet he won the Gold Medal in the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition in Indiana in 2012.