The New York Times
“Her sound has passion, grit and electricity but also a disarming warmth and sweetness that can unveil the music’s hidden strains of lyricism…”
“Even better was the brief slow movement, in which the throb of her silken tone and long-breathed phrasing honored the music’s tender romantic sensibility. She dispatched the bravura pages with spot-on digital marksmanship calculated to call attention to the music rather than to herself. In short, she made Schumann’s problematic opus succeed despite itself.”
“Faust, by contrast, was perfectly precise but wholly organic. Her sound had the complexity not of a machine’s cogs but of the jagged edge of a plant’s leaf, perfectly formed yet subject to natural forces — tugs at individual phrases, like gentle breezes, distinguishing one statement from another without a pause in velocity.”
“The stillness of focus and purity of sound that has distinguished her playing can be heard in a repertoire stretching from Beethoven and Schubert through to Hartmann and Ligeti, on modern and period strings. Where other violinists dazzle, Faust is a thinker.”
Isabelle Faust captivates her audience through her insightful and faithful interpretations, based on a thorough knowledge of the historical context of the works as well as her attention to current scholarship, allowing her to bring illumination and passion to her performances in repertoire by a wide range of composers.
After winning the renowned Leopold Mozart Competition and the Paganini Competition at a very young age, she soon began to perform regularly with the world’s major orchestras including the Berlin Philharmonic, Boston Symphony Orchestra, NHK Symphony Orchestra Tokyo, the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, Les Siècles and the Baroque Orchestra Freiburg.
This led to close and sustained collaborations with conductors like Andris Nelsons, Giovanni Antonini, François-Xavier Roth, Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Daniel Harding, Philippe Herreweghe, Jukka-Pekka Saraste, Jakub Hrusa, Klaus Mäkelä, Robin Ticciati, and Sir Simon Rattle, with whom she will be on tour again in March 2024.
Isabelle Faust’s vast artistic curiosity includes all eras and forms of instrumental cooperation. Therefore, she never considers music as an end in itself but rather advances the piece’s essence in a devoted, subtle and conscientious way. In addition to big symphonic violin concertos this includes for instance Schubert’s octet with historical instruments as well as Stravinsky’s “L’Histoire du Soldat” with Dominique Horwitz or Kurtág’s “Kafka Fragments” with Anna Prohaska. With great commitment she renders an outstanding service to the performance of contemporary music: Recent world premieres include works by Péter Eötvös, Brett Dean, Ondřej Adámek and Rune Glerup.
Highlights of the 2023-24 season include the celebration of György Ligeti’s 100th birthday with an extensive tour with Les Siècles and François-Xavier Roth, in which Ligeti’s work enters into a close dialogue with Mozart’s timeless œuvre. Faust will perform with orchestras such as the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, NDR Radiophilharmonie, Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra, Orquesta Nacional de España, Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse, NHK Symphony Orchestra, Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, as well as a tour with the London Symphony Orchestra. She is also Artist in Residence with the SWR Symphony Orchestra this season. Her focus in chamber music will be on projects with Antoine Tamestit, Kristian Bezuidenhout, Anne Katharina Schreiber, Kristin von der Goltz, and a North America tour with Alexander Melnikov and Jean-Guihen Queyras.
Her numerous recordings have been unanimously praised by critics and awarded the Diapason d’or, the Grammophone Award, the Choc de l’année and other prizes. The most recent recordings include Stravinsky’s Violin Concerto with Les Siècles and François-Xavier Roth, Schoenberg’s Violin Concerto under the baton of Daniel Harding and with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, as well as Beethoven’s Triple Concerto with Alexander Melnikov, Jean-Guihen Queyras, Pablo Heras-Casado and the Freiburger Barockorchester. Isabelle Faust presented further popular recordings among others of the Sonatas and Partitas for violin solo by Johann Sebastian Bach as well as violin concertos by Ludwig van Beethoven and Alban Berg under the direction of Claudio Abbado.
Faust shares a long-standing chamber music partnership with the pianist Alexander Melnikov. They have released joint recordings of sonatas for piano and violin by Mozart, Beethoven, and Brahms, among others.