Paul Meyer

clarinetist, conductor
Born March 5, 1965 in Mulhouse (France).


One of the world’s exceptional clarinettists, in the last few years Paul Meyer has also built up an extensive career as a conductor. He has conducted among others,the Seoul Philharmonic, Copenhagen Philharmonic, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Ensemble Orchestral de Paris, Orchestre Philharmonique de Nice, Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg, Munich Chamber Orchestra, Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra, English Chamber Orchestra, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Geneva Chamber Orchestra, Orchestra Sinfonica di Milano G.Verdi, Orchestra di Padova e del Veneto, Sinfonia Varsovia, Belgrade Philharmonic, Bilbao Symphony and Taipei Symphony Orchestra. He toured France with the Prague Chamber Orchestra and Italy with the Archi Italiana. During the season 2004/05, he has conducted the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France with Michel Portal as soloist, the Orchestre National d’Ile de France, the Orchestre Philharmonique de Nice, as well as the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, with Emmanuel Pahud as soloist, on tour in Scotland and Germany.

As a clarinettist he has appeared with major orchestras in Europe, USA, Far East and Australia such as : Royal Concertgebouw Amsterdam, BBC Philharmonic, NHK Symphony, Seoul Philharmonic, Tokyo Philharmonic, Berlin Symphony, Dresden Philharmonic, Hamburg and Hanover NDR Orchestras, Gustav Mahler Chamber Orchestra, Sinfonia Varsovia, Munich, Stuttgart, Zurich Chamber Orchestras, Scottish and English Chamber Orchestras, Orchestre National de France, Philharmonique de Radio France, Orchestre de Paris, Bordeaux, Lille, Monte-Carlo, Nice, Strasbourg, Toulouse Orchestras, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande under conductors like Myung-Whun chung, Günther Herbig, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Sir Yehudi Menuhin, Marek Janowski, Michael Gielen, Hans Graf, Dennis Russell Davies, John Nelson, Kent Nagano, Emmanuel Krivine, Sylvain Cambreling, Luciano Berio, Ulf Schirmer, Heinrich Schiff, Michael Schonwandt, David Zinman.

Paul Meyer has a wide repertoire which includes the major contemporary works for clarinet (Pierre Boulez, Morton Gould, Hans-Werner Henze, Gerd Kuhr, …). Krysztof Penderecki composed for him a concerto which was premiered at the Bad Kissingen Festival with the Sinfonia Varsovia conducted by the composer. Luciano Berio has dedicated to him a clarinet concerto - Alternatim – premiered in Europe and in the USA. He also gave a premiere of Michael Jarrell’s Concerto for clarinet with the Orchestre de Paris and Sylvain Cambreling. This season he is giving a premiere of Jean-Louis Agobet’s Concerto for 3 Clarinets, Quigan Chen’s Concerto with the Strasbourg Philharmonic, as well as with the Shangai Philharmonic under Muhai Tang and J.P.Goude’s Piece with the Bretagne Orchestra.

In chamber music, Paul Meyer plays with Myung-Whun Chung, Renaud and Gautier Capuçon, Gérard Caussé, François-René Duchable, Michel Dalberto, Maria Joao Pires, Jean-Yves Thibaudet, Gidon Kremer, Yuri Bashmet, Pamela Frank, Yo-Yo Ma, Emanuel Ax, Barbara Hendricks, Nathalie Dessay, Mstislav Rostropovich, Heinrich Schiff, Tabea Zimmermann, Jian Wang and Emmanuel Pahud, as well as the Carmina, Cleveland, Emerson, Hagen, Melos, Vogler, Ysaye, Lindsay and Takacs String Quartets. He had the honour to play with Jean-Pierre Rampal and Isaac Stern.

Paul Meyer has recorded pieces by Mozart, Weber, Copland, Busoni, Krommer, Pleyel, Brahms, Schumann, Bernstein, Arnold, Piazzolla, Poulenc for Denon, CBS, Erato, Sony, EMI, BMG, DGG. His recordings received numerous prizes (Diapason d’Or, Choc du Monde de la Musique, Stern by Monats Fonoforum, French Victoires de la Musique 99). Recently released : Astor Piazzolla’s Concerto para Quintetto with Gidon Kremer (Nonesuch), Poulenc chamber music (BMG), Messiaen’s Quatuor pour la fin du temps with Myung-Whun Chung, Gil Shaham, Jian Wang (DGG), Brahms recital with Eric Le Sage (BMG), chamber music with Emmanuel Pahud and Eric Le Sage and his first recordings as conductor with the Orchestra di Padova e del Veneto and Jean-Marc Luisada (BMG) in Mozart and Haydn. Just released : Mozart Clarinet Concerto with the Ensemble Orchestral de Paris and John Nelson (Virgin Classics).

Paul Meyer was born in Mulhouse (France) in 1965. Following his debut performance at the age of 13 with the Orchestre Symphonique du Rhin, he went on to study at the Paris Conservatoire and at the Basler Musikhochschule. Winner of the French Young Musicians Competition in 1982 and of the prestigious USA Young Concert Artists Auditions in 1984, he went on to give debut concerts in New York and consequently met and became friends with the legendary Benny Goodman, whose influence and friendship played an important part in Paul Meyer’s career and life.

Upper right picture : © DR. Central picture : © DR.