Grammy Nominated Composer & Violinist
Contemporary Classical and Jazz
“Grand Prize” winner New World Composers Competition of the New York Philharmonics 2017
I come from a multi-generational musical family. From a very early age my grandfather taught me the folk and gypsy melodies of Bohemia by ear, first singing and later adding harmonies and accompaniments on the violin. In keeping with our gypsy heritage, the whole family, all three generations, would play together.
My growth as a musician led me on the path of the typical classical training as a composer, pianist and violinist to the Vienna College of Music and Stuttgart Conservatory. Although these focused technical studies of the Western canon were excellent, I felt something was missing. Hoping to expand my compositional palette, I choose to pursue a Master’s Degree in composition and jazz piano at the Manhattan School of Music. One day, I came directly from a rehearsal with Philharmonia Virtuosi to my piano lesson with Richie Beirach. Seeing my violin, Richie asked me to play Bartok and improvise with it. It was a pivotal moment for me meeting someone with similar heritage, (his grandfather from Kiev and his grandmother from Hamburg), searching for similar ideas in music. The music we played and improvised in that first moment together was steeped in our similar heritages. Rarely does one capture this spirit in your first moments playing together. With Richie Beirach, and later with George Mraz, I finally felt at home musically and that made me feel at home in New York, the immigrant capitol of the world.
That moment led to my understanding that as a composer I want to integrate, improvisation, experimental notation, traditional counterpoint, pop song structures, post-tonal gestures and innovative performance techniques within formal compositional frameworks to meld and combine different musical traditions.
After graduating from MSM with a Presidents Award I wrote “New York Stories," a suite for the Philharmonia Virtuosi chamber orchestra. This work was later performed by Pittsburgh Symphony in 1999.
My first major commission followed in 2000 when Dennis Russell and the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra asked me to write Russian Sketches. Mr. Davies was a kind of mentor who introduced me into the world of major composition and gave me the change to write for his amazing ensemble three times. These performances intrigued Helmut Rilling and led to a long time standing relationship with him and the International Bach Academy of Stuttgart. My most recent commission for Mr. Rilling was something new to me. Written for Peter von Winhardt, a pianist and professor specialized in contemporary classical music with no experience in improvisation, the concerto for piano and orchestra experimented with sounds created in the piano using techniques from percussion instruments like the conga or the djembe. Earlier commissions, Bach 21 and De Profudis for choir, orchestra and electronics we performed at the Musikfest Stuttgart. They involved improvising soloist and the De Profundis was interwoven with Schumann’s Missa Sacra. Other choral commissions include “Ich rufe zu Gott” for choir and violin solo premiered and recorded by the great violinist Ida Bieler and the Orpheus Vokalensemble in 2016 for the Naxos CD Touched by Strings and “Six Songs of Innocence,” a lyrical setting of poems by William Blake premiered by Sirius Quartet and Collegium Iuvenum Stuttgart Boys Choir in June 2014. Here I combined string quartet with boys choir, writing improvised music for the quartet in both the jazz and classical styles. This was premiered at the beautiful Chelsea Music Festival in New York City.
Other recent commissions include a pair of solo concertos, one for violin and big band the other for piano and big band premiered by the WDR in Cologne and “Clockwork Interrupted,” an orchestral work premiered by the Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra and SWR Big Band in July 2014. In this composition the challenge was, to combine the sounds of a Jazz Big Band with a classical orchestra and finding a way to interweave the different musical styles.
One of the most rewarding projects I have been involved in was the 2007 commission commemorating the 1000 year anniversary of the City of Fürth, Germany. The music for Mayim,Mayim involved 33 dancers with choreography by Pina Bausch, Mark Morris, Sasha Walz and 10 musicians. The event was documented by the great director Jakov Settler
My explorations of the musical space between classical music and jazz with Richie Beirach and George Mraz, as composer, arranger, and violinist have led to numerous concerts and yielded three critically acclaimed albums, including the Latin Grammy-nominated Round About Federico Mompou. The Guardian wrote, “the excellent violinist Huebner take[s] off in muscular manner… the playing itself is beautiful,” while The Irish Times, reviewing a recording of mine with Beirach and saxophonist Charlie Mariano, writes, “violinist Gregor Huebner… is in the kind of mood to blow anyone away… emotionally complex… lovely.”
Just as many classical composers double as conductors, my compositions for smaller ensembles have given me the opportunity to perform and act as a music director/band leader. Beirach taught me that creating/producing my own groups and projects was a viable way to get my music heard.
A recent solo endeavor is my second El Violin Latinoalbum an ethnographic exploration of the role of the violin in traditional Latin American music. The Wall Street Journal praised it as “by turns sexy and sly, impassioned and dreamy, his collection of well-known tunes, unexpected arrangements and original compositions brings together far-flung members of the fiddle diaspora.”
To explore the music of South America, especially Cuba and Argentina, I went to these countries in between 1998 and 2000 several times, doing research and taking lessons on instruments I didn’t know. I learned especially in Cuba how important it is to feel the time and the clave in your body. The best way to learn this is playing the drums. I am about to go into the studio this fall to record Vol.3 of the El Violin Latino series, the Cuban Volume.
For over a decade, I have been a violinist and composer with the Sirius Quartet. Sirius Quartet is an acclaimed contemporary string ensemble praised by The New York Times for their “versatility and flair with lively improvisations,” The Sirius has premiered several of my major works, including “New York Suite” for string quartet; “Cuban Impressions” for string quartet and string orchestra; and “Colors of the East” for string quintet and accordion. While in residence at Germany’s State Academy of Music Ochsenhausen, I developed together with Sirius 2010s Racing Mind: New Music for Strings, a full-length album of my compositions for string orchestra featuring Sirius Quartet members on several tracks. Sirius has also released two full-length albums of my compositions for the quartet: 1997s In Between (Cimp Records), 2015s Colors of the East (Autentico Music/Naxos 2015). Sirius’s most recent release Paths become Lines, (Autentico Music/Naxos 2016) features compositions by me and two other quartet members. With Sirius I toured internationally to venues like the Beijing Music Festival, Stuttgart Jazz Fest, Bern University of the Arts, the Andy Warhol Museum, Merkin Concert Hall, Beijing Music Festival, Stuttgart Jazz Fest, Bern University of the Arts, the Andy Warhol Museum, Chelsea Music Festival, and repeat visits to the Taichung Jazz Fest, Taiwan’s largest jazz event.
450 West 152ndStreet Apt 43
New York, NY 10031
Contemporary Classical and Jazz
Violin, Piano, Composition
Gregor Hübner live
Booking Agency for Sirius Quartet:
Bernstein Artists, Inc.
282 Flatbush Avenue, Suite 101
Brooklyn, NY 11217, USA
Voice: +1 (718) 623-1214
Sue Renée Bernstein, President
For other ensembles:
450 West 152nd Street #43
Francesca Raimond, FIR Productions
BANDS | PROGRAMS
Richie Beirach/Gregor Huebner Duo
EL Violin Latino
Gregor Huebner NY-NRG Quartet
European New York Jazz Collective.
LOS SONADORES / DREAMERS - El Violín Latino
GREGOR HÜBNER YOUTUBE CHANNEL
Gregor Hübner youtube Channel
Sirius Quartet (Soho Music, 2019)
Evelyn Huber & Sirius Quartet
Evelyn Huber & Sirius Quartet (Soho Music, 2019)
Richie Beirach & Gregor Hübner Duo & The WDR Big Band
Any musician worth his or her salt knows that timing is integral to making music. From counting notes in a measure, to orchestrating in different meters, the element of time is foundational to every piece of music. For most artists, being sure that a song has proper timing is mostly a musical decision. But in the case of Crossing Borders, maestros Richie Beirach, piano, Gregor Huebner, violin, and Rich De Rosa (conductor) have thought about timing in a broader sense. Their spectacular and sparkling album with Germany’s WDR Big Band is both timely and timeless.
El Violin Latino
Now it is here – the third CD of the El Violin Latino series by Gregor Huebner. As with the previous albums, the violinist and composer gathered an illustrious group in the studio and a collaboration of wonderful musicians emerged. The companions of Gregor Huebner have made this album a new milestone in his musical career. The incredible singer Yumarya from Curaçao, Edmar Castaneda from Colombia on the harp, Huebner’s band members Klaus Mueller, Jerome Goldschmidt, John Benitez, Louie Bauzo, Ludwig Alfonso, as well as musicians from previous recordings like Karen Joseph, Mappy Torres, Johnny Almendra and Ruben Rodriguez have inspired him for this recording.
Richie Beirach & Gregor Hübner
Happy Birthday Richie Beirach and Gregor Huebner!
When it comes to jazz musicians improving with age, the pianist Richie Beirach is a perfect example. With the release of “Live at Birdland New York” the pianist-composer is celebrating his 70th birthday, and demonstrates he’s still at the top of his game alongside his congenial partner of two decades, the Stuttgart-born, New York based violinist Gregor Huebner. Another birthday boy, Huebner is also celebrating a milestone, reaching half a century on May 23, the exact same day as Beirach. As a tribute, the leading Munich-based jazz label ACT releases a CD featuring highlights recorded in 2012 from their decade long annual week’s ‘live’ residence at the illustrious Birdland in New York, in which they are joined by the high calibre lineup of bassist George Mraz, trumpeter Randy Brecker and drummer Billy Hart.