Since making his London debut in 2009, Mahan Esfahani has ushered the harpsichord into the mainstream of concert life, performing in leading venues around the globe such as the Tonhalle in Zurich, the Cologne Philharmonie, the Vienna and Berlin konzerthausen and London’s Wigmore Hall, where over the next five seasons he explores Bach’s works for harpsichord beginning with the Goldberg Variations in December 2016.
Esfahani was born in Tehran in 1984, and emigrated to Washington, D.C. four years later. He studied musicology and history at Stanford University, and completed his formation as a harpsichordist with the celebrated Zuzana Růžičková in Prague, where he now resides.
Esfahani has achieved several firsts for his instrument: BBC “New Generation Artist” from 2008-2010, being shortlisted both for the Royal Philharmonic Society’s Instrumentalist of the Year, and Gramophone Artist of the Year two years in a row, and performing the first harpsichord recital in the history of the BBC Proms in 2011.
Following acclaimed appearances in 2015-16 with Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, Esfahani signed as LACO’s first ever Baroque Conversations Artistic Partner for the next three seasons. Also in 2016-17, he gives recitals at Duke University; the McCarter Theater in Princeton, the Isabel Bader Center in Kingston, Ontario; and New York’s 92nd Street Y; and he will also join Montreal’s Les Violons du Roy for concertos by Bach and Gorecki. Following two successful albums for Hyperion Records, garnering a 2014 Gramophone Award and BBC Music Magazine’s “Newcomer of the Year,” Esfahani signed as an exclusive artist with Deutsche Grammophon. His first album for DG/Archiv, Time Present and Time Past—combining baroque and modern music—was released in Spring of 2015 to great critical acclaim. DG releases his next recording, Bach’s Goldberg Variations, in August 2016.