James Ehnes
Gig Seeker Pro

James Ehnes

Band Classical


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos


The best kept secret in music


"Superb with the New York Philharmonic"

"Mr. Ehnes can really play. On Thursday night, Mr. Ehnes gave a superb account of the concerto. From the violinist, Walton requires gobs of lyricism, and Mr. Ehnes provided them. Seldom will you hear such singing on a violin. He was utterly seamless. Mr. Ehnes's sound was focused, sweet -- but it was never sugary. Technically, Mr. Ehnes seemed capable of anything. And he showed admirable understanding of Walton's music." - New York Sun, January 9, 2006

"A red-hot tour of the United Kingdom"

"The spotlight was on James Ehnes, the red-hot Canadian violinist. His technique is blistering, giving an utter conviction to whatever he plays - including Friday's supersonic Paganini encore. It followed a meaty performance of Bruch's Violin Concerto, which benefited as much from Ehnes's unfussy musicianship and sun-ripe tone, as from Fischer and the SCO's dramatically charged accompaniment." - Scotsman, November 14, 2005

"Impeccable recital in Montréal"

"Upright and imperturbable in the Heifitz manner, Ehnes left no doubt of his can-do-anything credentials, playing the forceful chords and manic dance figures of the finale [of Bartok's Violin Sonata No.1] with great authority. Even more impressive were the subtle tonal effects of the first two movements. Those minor ninths in the Adagio, impeccably in tune, sounded like octaves from another dimension." - Montreal Gazette, September 26, 2005

"James Ehnes touches the very soul of Elgar"

"Anyone who has been following the progress of the young Canadian violinist James Ehnes will know that he is not merely a fine technician but also a superb musician. …the way he touched the very soul of the Elgar concerto made for a performance that surpassed the exceptional and entered the realms of the truly inspirational. Yes, we know that Yehudi Menuhin played the Elgar when he was still in short trousers, but it never ceases to amaze me how musicians who, like Ehnes, are still only in their twenties can have that capacity to enter so fully and convincingly into a stylistic idiom, particularly, in this case, one that can be as elusive as Elgar's." - Daily Telegraph, May 11, 2005

"A spell-binding performance with the BBC Philharmonic"

“James Ehnes played with spellbinding intensity, shimmering magically to life with his opening solo, then digging into the scherzo's rough middle section with a relish that was both earthy and jaw-droppingly virtuosic.” - Guardian, February 3, 2003

"Dynamite with the San Francisco Symphony"

"A dynamite debut. Ehnes…made a terrific case for the piece. His playing boasts a quiet elegance, seemingly without effort or turmoil, that brought out the lyricism underscoring even Weill's most tartly pointed writing. His string tone is warm and full-voiced, his rhythmic control deceptively fluid. His return visit is something to look forward to." - San Francisco Chronicle, November 8, 2003

"Delicate and Bouyant with the New York Philharmonic"

"Delicacy and buoyancy distinguished Ehnes' performance, particularly in his first-movement solo cadenza and the balletic sequence to follow. The piece is melodious to its core, with the violinist making the most of the tunes in even the busiest passagework...the sounds he made were spot-on, yielding the purest intonation whether in the glassy ponticello touches of the first movement's ending or the garlands of piquant double-stopping in the Prokofiev-like central scherzo. Ehnes was a connoisseur's player in a connoisseur's piece." - Star Ledger, January 9, 2006

"Rave Reviews for Bach Sonatas for Violin and Harpsichord, Vol. 1 with Luc Beausejour (harpsichord)"

"James Ehnes has already made a number of outstanding recordings, but this may be his finest yet. It will come as no surprise to his growing band of admirers that technically and internationally these performances are utterly blemish less, without the slightest sense of strain...Ehnes’s golden tone is seamlessly sustained throughout the register and his use of vibrato exquisitely subtle, based around an extremely narrow medium pace, absolutely ideal for music of this period…” (International Record Review, June 2005)

“Ehnes, of course, carries the tunes, and he makes his Strad sound like a soprano with musical heart and the most exquisite cantabile phrasing. He also eschews Romantic colouration in favour a clear, restrained tonality devoid of vibrato that is especially effective when the music is pulling him forward.” (Edmonton Journal, 4 June 2005)

“Like the great Belgian player, Ehnes commands a beguilingly sweet, singing tone and adopts an unashamedly expressive approach to the adagios, andantes and largos of the four sonatas. The allegros and prestos have an irresistible élan and momentum. Highly recommended.” (Sunday Times, 29 May 2005)

“James Ehnes seems incapable of making a recording that is anything less than first-class.... As before, Ehnes' polished musicianship is particularly well suited to this repertoire. His fluid playing, light articulation and elegant decoration are delightful, with his sweet burnished tone bringing out the lyric freshness in slow movements
without sacrificing Baroque.” (Sun Sentinel, 6 May 2005) - None


Mozart, Complete Violin Concerti (CBC Records) January 2006

John Adams, Road Movies for Violin and Piano and Halleluia Junction for 2 Pianos with Andrew Russo and James Ehnes (Black Box) Feb. 2005

Dvorak, Violin Concerto with the BBC Philharmonic and Noseda conducting (Chandos) Spring 2005

Bach, Sonata Nos.1–4 for violin and harpsichord with Luc Beausejour, harpsichord (Analekta) Spring 2005
2005 ADISQ Award Nominee

Dallapiccola, Tartiniana II with the BBC Philharmonic (Chandos) October 2004

Dohnanyi, Concerto for Violin with the BBC Philharmonic (Chandos) Sept. 2004

Wieniawski & Sarasate, Works by Wieniawski and Sarasate with Eduard Laurel, piano (CBC Records) Sept. 2004

Hummel, Two Violin Concertos and Potpourri for Viola and Orchestra with the London Mozart Players (James Ehnes, violin & viola) (Chandos) August 2004 - 2005 JUNO Nominee

Bach, Sonatas and Partitas for Solo Violin
2 CSD set (Analekta) 2000
2001 JUNO Award Best Classical Album Solo
2002 Cannes Classical Award for Young Artist of the Year

Bruch, Concerto for violin No. 2 & Scottish Fantasy
Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, Mario Bernardi, conductor (CBC Records) Nov. 2002
2003 JUNO Award Best Classical Album Orchestral
2003 ADISQ Award for Album of the Year

Bruch, Concertos for violin Nos. 1 and 3 Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, Charles Dutoit, conductor (CBC Records) 2001
2002 JUNO Award Best Classical Album Orchestral
2002 Canadian Independent Music Award

Fauré & Schumann, Piano Quintet in E-flat by Schumann and Piano Quintet No.2 by Fauré, with Jan Vogler, Louis Lortie, Mira Wang and Naoko Shimizu (Sony Classical) Sept. 2003

Kreisler, James Ehnes … Fritz Kreisler (Analekta) Sept. 2002
2003 JUNO Nominee
2003 ADISQ Award Nominee

Paganini, Caprices (Telarc) 1995

Prokofiev, Two Sonatas and Five Melodies with Wendy Chen, piano (Analekta) 2000

Ravel, Tzigane, Berceuse, Sonata for violin and piano, Debussy and Saint-Saëns with Wendy Chen, piano (CBC Records) 2000

Various Romantic Pieces – works by Janáček, Smetana and Dvořák with Eduard Laurel, piano (Analekta) Jan. 2004
2004 ADISQ Award for Album of the Year
2005 JUNO Nominee

Various "Concert Français" ("French Showpieces") with the Orchestre symphonique de Québec, Yoav Talmi, conductor - Saint-Saëns, Berlioz, Chausson, Debussy, Milhaud, Massenet (Analekta) 2001
2002 ADISQ Award for Album of the Year
2002 JUNO Nominee


Feeling a bit camera shy


"One of the most gifted and sincerely expressive artists to have emerged in recent times" (The Daily Telegraph, London)

James Ehnes has rapidly established a pre-eminent reputation among concert violinists. He has performed with such renowned conductors as Vladimir Ashkenazy, Sir Andrew Davis, Charles Dutoit, Ivan Fischer, Michael Gielen, Hans Graf, Richard Hickox, Paavo Järvi, Andrew Litton, Zdenek Macal, Sir Charles Mackerras, David Robertson, Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, Christian Thielemann, Bramwell Tovey, and Bobby McFerrin, appearing with orchestras throughout Europe, Asia, the United States, and Canada. Recent engagements include appearances in Europe with the London Symphony Orchestra, the Philharmonia, the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the BBC Philharmonic, the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, the Ulster Orchestra, the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie, the Orchestre de Lyon, the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, the Budapest Festival Orchestra, and the Finnish Radio Orchestra, in Asia with the NHK Symphony Orchestra (Tokyo), the Malaysian Philharmonic and the Hong Kong Philharmonic, and in North America with the major orchestras of New York, Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Detroit, Minnesota, St. Paul, Houston, Dallas, Seattle, Vancouver, Calgary, Winnipeg, Toronto, and Montreal.

Recitals have taken Mr. Ehnes to major cities around the world including London, Paris, Prague, Washington D.C., Tokyo, Osaka, Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver. He has also appeared at major international festivals including Chicago's Ravinia Festival, the Marlboro Festival, the Seattle Chamber Music Festival, the Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival, the Tokyo Summer Music Festival, the Bermuda Festival, the Montreux Festival, the Festival de la Chaise-Dieu, the Festival Côte St. André, the Moritzburg Festival, and the Festival of the White Nights. As a chamber musician, he often performs in trio with cellist Jan Vogler and pianist Louis Lortie and has collaborated with such artists as Leif Ove Andsnes and Yo-Yo Ma.

After a busy summer highlighted by performances on tour with the New York Philharmonic and the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, James Ehnes’ 2005-06 season includes performances in North America with the New York Philharmonic, the Chicago Symphony, the National Arts Center Orchestra, and the symphonies of Fort Worth, Indianapolis, Colorado, Grand Rapids, Toronto, Calgary, Thunder Bay, and Newfoundland. In Europe, he appears with the London Symphony Orchestra, the Philharmonia, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, the BBC Philharmonic, the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, the Bournemouth Symphony, the Berlin Symphony Orchestra, and the Orchestre de Liege. He will also perform the Japanese premier of Oliver Knussen’s violin concerto with the NHK symphony orchestra and Vladimir Ashkenazy. Recital appearances include Montreal, Quebec City, Kitchener, and Deauville, France.

James Ehnes celebrates Mozart: As a tribute to the 250th anniversary of Mozart's birth (which coincides with his own 30th birthday!), James Ehnes will release a recording of Mozart's complete output for solo violin and orchestra. The five Violin Concertos and three single movement works – Adagio K 261, Rondo K 269, and Rondo K 373 – will be released in January 2006 on CBC Records. The recording features an ensemble of extraordinary musicians which Ehnes gathered from around the world and directed himself.

Ehnes' s 2004-2005 season began with a return engagement at the Ravinia Festival and was marked by debuts with the Residentie Orchestra of the Hague, the Pacific Symphony, and the National Ballet of Canada in special performances of Prokofiev's Violin Concerto No. 1 to accompany Jerome Robbins' ballet Opus 19, The Dreamer. Internationally, he spent a significant amount of time in the U.K., performing with the BBC Philharmonic, the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, the Philharmonia, and the London Symphony Orchestra. The season also saw him return to l'Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, the Vancouver Symphony, l'Orchestre symphonique de Québec, the Minnesota Orchestra, the Cincinnati Symphony, the Detroit Symphony, and the Edmonton Symphony.

2004 and 2005 have seen the release of eight new James Ehnes CD's: a collection of works by Janácek, Smetana and Dvorák entitled Romantic Pieces with pianist Eduard Laurel (Analekta), a disc of Wieniawski and Sarasate (CBC) also with Eduard Laurel, works by John Adams with pianist Andrew Russo (Black Box), Bach’s Sonatas nos. 1-3 with harpsichordist Luc Beausejour (Analekta), and four recordings on the Chandos label: Dohnanyi's 2nd Violin Concerto (BBC Philharmonic/Mathias Bamert), Dallapiccola's Tartiniana (BBC Philharmonic/Gianandrea Noseda), Dvorák's Violin Concerto (BBC Philharmonic/Noseda), and three works by Hummel (London Mozart Players/Howard Shelley). Upcoming releases inc