“The best piano duo in front of an audience today”
New York Times
“The Labèque sisters are tremendous. They are great performers, and great interpreters. And they are wonderful supporters of music- not only modern music, but just music. It is great to work with them”
“Whether Mozart or Stravinsky, their musical line always sounds as if it’s being woven for the very first time... But the illusion of improvisation is the genius of their performances. In all their recordings there is a deceptive sprezzatura that is born of throwing the preparation to the winds and hanging onto each others ears.”
Katia and Marielle Labèque are sibling pianists renowned for their ensemble of synchronicity and energy. Their musical ambitions started at an early age and they rose to international fame with their contemporary rendition of Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue (one of the first gold records in classical music) and have since developed a stunning career with performances worldwide.
They are regular guests with the most prestigious orchestras such as the Berlin Philharmonic, Bayerischer Rundfunk, Boston Symphony, Chicago Symphony, Cleveland Orchestra, Leipzig Gewandhaus, London Symphony, London Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Filarmonia della Scala, Philadelphia Orchestra, Dresden Staatskapelle, Royal Concertgebouw Amsterdam and Vienna Philharmonic, under the direction of Marin Alsop, Alain Altinoglu, Semyon Bychkov, Sir Colin Davis, Gustavo Dudamel, Gustavo Gimeno, Mirga Grazinyte-Tyla, Pietari Inkinen, Louis Langrée, Zubin Mehta, Juanjo Mena, Andres Orozco-Estrada, Seiji Ozawa, Antonio Pappano, Matthias Pintscher, Georges Pretre, Sir Simon Rattle, Santtu Matias Rouvali, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Leonard Slatkin, Michael Tilson Thomas and Jaap van Zweden.
They have appeared with Baroque music ensembles such as The English Baroque Soloists with Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Il Giardino Armonico with Giovanni Antonini, Musica Antica with Reinhard Goebel, and Venice Baroque with Andrea Marcon, il Pomo d’oro with Maxim Emelyanichev and also toured with The Age of Enlightenment and Sir Simon Rattle. They will be on stage once more with Giardino Armonico and Giovanni Antonini in 2019.
Katia and Marielle have had the privilege of working with many composers including Thomas Adès, Louis Andriessen, Luciano Berio, Pierre Boulez, Bryce Dessner, Philip Glass, Osvaldo Golijov, György Ligeti, Nico Muhly and Olivier Messiaen. At Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles they presented the world premiere of Philip Glass’s new Concerto with the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra under the direction of Gustavo Dudamel. Last spring also saw the world premiere of Bryce Dessner’s concerto at Royal Festival Hall with the London Philharmonic Orchestra and John Storgards and in June 2020 a new concerto written by Nico Muhly will receive its world premiere at Lincoln Center with New York Philharmonic and Jaap van Zweden.
The Labèques play in festivals and renowned venues worldwide including the Vienna Musikverein, Hamburg Musikhalle, Munich Philharmonie, Carnegie Hall, Royal Festival Hall, La Scala, Berlin Philharmonie, Blossom, Hollywood Bowl, Lucerne, BBC Proms, Ravinia, Tanglewood, and Salzburg. An audience of more than 33,000 attended a gala concert with the Berlin Philharmonic conducted by Sir Simon Rattle at Berlin’s Waldbühne, now available on DVD (EuroArts). A record audience of more than 100,000 attended the Vienna Summer Night Concert in Schonbrunn (now available on CD and DVD by SONY). More than 1.5 million viewers followed the event worldwide on television.
For their own label KML recordings, they have released a CD box Sisters (2014). Previous releases include a Gershwin-Bernstein album, and their project Minimalist Dream House (50 years of minimalist music). The DVD “The Labeque Way, a letter to Katia and Marielle by Alessandro Baricco” produced by El Deseo (Pedro and Augustin Almodovar) and filmed by Felix Cabez is released by EuroArts. Their biography, “Une vie a quatre mains” by Renaud Machart is published by Buchet-Chastel.
The Labèques’ label KML Recordings joined the historical label Deutsche Grammophon, their first collaboration being Stravinsky's “Rite of Spring” and Debussy's “Epigraphes Antiques”, followed by “Love Stories” with music by Leonard Bernstein and David Chalmin , “Amoria”, a journey to their Basque roots covering five centuries of music , “Moondog”, a tribute to Louis Thomas Hardin, one of the true geniuses of his time. They just released a new album « El Chan » dedicated entirely to American composer Bryce Dessner, including his Concerto for two pianos with Orchestre de Paris conducted by Matthias Pintscher. The album is dedicated to the film director Alejandro Gonzalez Iñarritú, who created the album cover artwork.
Most recent performances include concerts with the New York Philharmonic, Camerata Salzburg, Elb Philharmonie Hamburg and Thom Yorke, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and Semyon Bychkov, Dresden Staatskapelle at Easter Festival Salzburg with Andres Orozco-Estrada , Chicago Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony and Berlin Philharmonic, including return visits to the Cleveland Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, Hollywood Bowl and Cincinnati Symphony.
At the invitation of the Philharmonie Hall in Paris for a special « Week End » , attention was focused on “Amoria”, “Invocations” and their new project for two guitars and two pianos with David Chalmin and Bryce Dessner including a piece written for them by Thom Yorke “Don’t fear the Light” with Thom Yorke as special guest.
One of the most acclaimed musicians of our time, Katia Labèque has earned universal admiration for her extraordinary virtuosity and exceptional communicativeness in concert. Katia Labèque‘s childhood was full of music and traditional studies were integrated in the lessons by her mother, Ada Cecchi, a pupil of Marguerite Long. Favoring her anti-conformist spirit, Katia has an eclectic repertoire that ranges from Bach to contemporary avant-garde.
As a duo with her sister Marielle, she has had an important international career, invited by the most prestigious orchestras, including the Berliner Philharmoniker, Bayerischer Rundfunk, the symphony orchestras of Boston and Chicago, the Cleveland and Philadelphia Orchestras, Leipzig Gewandhaus, London Symphony, Philharmonia, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Filarmonica della Scala, and Wiener Philharmoniker. The impressive itinerary has taken them to the most important festivals, from Berlin to Blossom, Hollywood Bowl, Lucerne, the Proms of London, Ravinia, Tanglewood, Salzburg Easter Festival.An audience of more than 33,000 attended a gala concert with the Berlin Philharmonic conducted by Sir Simon Rattle at Berlin’s Waldbühne, now available on DVD (EuroArts).
Katia had the privilege of working with many composers including Thomas Adès, Louis Andriessen, Luciano Berio, Pierre Boulez, Philip Glass, Osvaldo Golijov, György Ligeti and Olivier Messiaen. Katia and Marielle gave in Los Angeles at Walt Disney Hall the world premiere of Philip Glass’s new Concerto (written for them) together with Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra under the direction of Gustavo Dudamel. A new concerto by Bryce Dessner, written specially for the piano duo, took place at Royal festival Hall with London Philharmonic orchestra
Her own label, KML recordings, is distributed by Deutsche Grammophon and have release several CD including Minimalist Dream House, West Side Story, Rite of Spring etc….. . The DVD "The Labèque Way", a letter to Katia and Marielle by Alessandro Baricco produced by El Deseo (Pedro and Augustin Almodóvar) and filmed by Félix Cábez was released by EuroArts.
Besides the duo with her sister, in 2001 Katia Labèque created an extraordinary new duo with the violinist Viktoria Mullova, which, from the beginning, enjoyed great success with the public and critics: together they have played at Carnegie Hall in New York, the Musikverein in Vienna, Musikhalle of Hamburg, Munich Philharmonic and again in Lucerne, Paris, Belgrade, Athens, Rome, Florence, London, etc. and recorded a CD Récital (KLM 1110/Onyx 4015) with the music of Schubert, Ravel and Stravinsky (www.klmrecordings.com).
Katia’s most recent solo project « Moondog » took place at festival de Fourvieres in Lyon with band « Triple Sun » , and will be released in Autumn 2018
A record audience of more then 100.000 attended the Vienna Summer Night Concert 2016 in Schönbrunn,(now available on CD and DVD by Sony), where Katia and Marielle played with the Vienna Philharmonic under the baton of Semyon Bychkov. More then 1,5 Milliard viewer followed the concert worldwide on the TV.
Twitter : @KMLabeque