New York / Berlin, March 26, 2018: Sony Classical is pleased to announce the signing of renowned German pianist and composer Volker Bertelmann - known as Hauschka - in a new long-term recording contract. The first fruits of this collaboration will herald a return of the artist to his musical origins with an album of melodic solo piano works. The album will be released in early 2019.
A composer, songwriter and experimental musician, Hauschka is known as one of today’s leading exponents of prepared piano music. In recent years he has also built a prolific career writing scores for films, coming to international prominence in this field through his soundtrack for the hit film Lion in 2016. Scored in collaboration with Dustin O’Halloran, the soundtrack was nominated for numerous awards including an Academy Award, Golden Globe and BAFTA. Hauschka discovered the prepared piano shortly after the release of his first solo album Substantial and the instrument has been an integral part of his compositional endeavours ever since. His impressive catalogue lies testament to his extensive exploration of possibilities on this instrument, ranging from the spontaneous improvisations of The Prepared Piano (2005), to the electronic sound-worlds of What If (2017).
Ever prolific, Hauschka has worked on numerous other projects throughout the last decade, most notably in the fields of film, theatre, dance and classical ensemble works. His recent soundtrack work, in addition to Lion, includes the films In Dubious Battle (2016), Exodus (2016) & Praia do Futuro; music for the new US TV mini-series Patrick Melrose starring Benedict Cumberbatch. He also founded Düsseldorf‘s annual Piano Approximation Festival, which features an always-imposing line-up of internationally renowned experimental artists.
Collaborators along the way have included Calexico’s Joey Burns and John Convertino, violinist Hilary Hahn, the Alma Quartet, mandolin player Avi Avital, cellists Nicolas Altstaedt and Jeffrey Zeigler (formerly of the Kronos Quartet) and drummer Samuli Kosminen from Icelandic band múm. In recent years, Hauschka has also composed music for classical orchestras, ensembles and soloists such as the MDR Leipzig Radio Symphony Orchestra, where he was Composer in Residence, Folkwang Chamber Orchestra as well as members of the Munich Philharmonic.
Volker Bertelmann says: “I am very proud to announce that I will release my next record with Sony Classical. With this record, I am going full circle and will return to my musical roots, where my music preserves the purity of piano in its natural form. I will continue to explore prepared piano with my existing labels, but my music with Sony will be an expansion of my musical expression.”
Managing Director Sony Classical International Per Hauber says: “Volker’s sound musical knowledge and background enabled him to develop his own musical language, which in addition to his great successes as a film music composer, also made him one of the most innovative and sought-after composers of a new and vital classical music scene. At Sony Classical, we look forward with great curiosity and excitement to our joint projects with Volker.”