Biography of Jiří Bárta
Jiří Bárta began his rise to the international cellist league in the early 1990s. He undertook studies in Prague with Joseph Chuchro and Mirko Skampa, and in Cologne with Boris Pergamenschikov. He gained additional experience at the famed Piatigorsky seminar in Los Angeles and attended master classes with Heinrich Schiff and Andre Navarra. In 1991 he receives the Europaische Forderpreis fur Musik, followed in that same year by the Rostropovich-Hammer Award in Los Angeles. He works with leading Czech and international orchestras and conductors.
Recent engagements include: a tour to Japan with the Tokyo Recital Debut at the Kioi Hall with pianist Frederic Chiu; the Berlin Millenium Concert with the Berlin Symphony; critically acclaimed live readings of the Shostakovich Concertos with the Prague Symphony and Maxim Shostakovich; a performance of the Lustoslawski Cello Concerto with the Czech Philharmonic at the Prague Spring Festival (May 2000); a Dvorak Cello Concerto with the Czech Philharmonic and Libor Pesek (October 2000); the Newport Festival for the fourth consecutive year (August 2000); a tour to Spain with Bach Cello Suites commemorating the anniversary of the composer (November 2000); a tour to South America with the Prague Symphony (October 2000); a tour to Japan with the Prague Symphony with appearance at Suntori Hall (2001); a tour to the United Kingdom with the Berlin Symphony (May 2001); and, a recital at Wigmore Hall in London with, among others, pianist Piers Lane.
His latest recording “Reflections” was voted the best Czech CD of 1999 and won the “Harmony Award of 2000” (annual award given to the best classical recordings by “Harmonie” music magazine in Prague), as well as the highest rating and “Klassik Heute Empfehlung” (recommendation of the month) by German magazine “Klassik Heute”. In 1995, his Supraphon recording with sonatas by award. Jiří Bárta’s other Supraphon recordings include critically acclaimed complete Bach Cello Suites and works by Franck, Debussy, and Janacek. The DVD recording “Jiří Bárta Plays Dvorak” (Cello Concerto with the Prague Symphony Orchestra and Gaetano Delogu) was released in Japan by BVA/Dreamline in 1999. Czech TV recordings include live performance of Kodaly’s Solosonate Op. 8.
Jiří Bárta cites frequent recordings and stage collaborations with famed violinist Josef Suk as “greatly influential”. Other chamber music partners have included Dmitri Sitkovetski, Lars Vogf, Jan Cech, Michel Arrignon, and Andrea Lucchesini. Today, Jiří Bárta works with leading Czech and international orchestras and conductors. He is also an enthusiastic promoter of new music working closely with composers such as Marek Kopelent and Pavel Zemek.
He resides in Prague with his wife, Elif.
Jiří Bárta plays a Gagliano cello of 1785.