“I see the future of Baroque orchestral music in the hands of modern ensembles – the fetish of the ‘original instrument’ has had its day, but not the profoundly trained professional who guides an orchestra into the deeper dimensions of the composition. For it isn’t the instrument that makes the music, but the head!”
The Süddeutsche Zeitung reveres him as an ‘icon of early music’, and the New York Times applauds him as a ‘light in a sea of mediocrity’. Reinhard Goebel specialises in the repertoire of the 17th and 18th centuries; As an expounder of period performance practice for both early music ensembles and modern orchestras, and as an endless fount of knowledge about gems of the repertoire, he is a world-renowned specialist.
Since May 2018 he is the Artistic Director of the Berlin Barock Solisten, with whom he is connected through a long artistic collaboration. His new recording of the Brandenburg Concertos for Sony Classical (2017), with the Berliner Barock Solisten, was acclaimed by the press. Eleonore Büning, on SWR2 radio: ‘It’s as romantic as the legendary first recording, just as sensual, stormy, sparkling, resounding. It’s more radical in its tempi, but totally undogmatic as to the old big questions of instrumentation and tuning. And it goes a good deal further in phrasing, timbre, the transparency of the musical interplay and the interpretation of the tonal language.’
Reinhard Goebel was the founder of the legendary Musica Antiqua Köln, whom he directed for 33 years. As a conductor, his unique way of amalgamating passion for music with meticulous musicological knowledge, inspires, captivates and polarises today's orchestral scene. When asked in interview whether too much knowledge might be harmful to music, he answers, 'That's not possible. Knowledge is the source of all inspiration! It's staggering. [...] Knowledge intoxicates, and more knowledge is yet more intoxicating.' (VAN magazine, 2.3.2016).
In forthcoming seasons, he is looking forward to musical encounters with North Netherlands Symphony Orchestra (Netherlands tour of Bach St Matthew Passion, 2022), Verbier Festival Chamber Orchestra, Neues Bachisches Collegium Leipzig, The Israel Camerata, Sinfonieorchester Hildesheim, Brucknerhaus Linz, Residenz, Orchesterhaus Ferstl-Saal, among others.
Reinhard Goebel has worked with orchestras such as Berlin Philharmonic, Dresden Staatskappelle, Konzerthausorchester Berlin, the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, the Berliner Barock Solisten, the German Radio Symhony Orchestras in Frankfurt, Cologne, Hanover, Munich, Leipzig and Saarbrücken, the Academy of Ancient Music as well as the Taipei, Melbourne and Sydney Symphony Orchestras. He is principal guest conductor of the Bavarian Chamber Philharmonic in Augsburg, and in 2010 succeeded Nicolaus Harnoncourt as professor at the Salzburg Mozarteum.
Recordings and awards
CD recordings featuring Reinhard Goebel can be found on all the great labels: Deutsche Harmonia Mundi, Deutsche Grammophon, Sony BMG and Oehms Classics. In February 2008 Reinhard Goebel, along with Korean violinist Yura Lee and the Bavarian Chamber Philharmonic, was awarded the distinguished Diapason d'Or for his "Mozart in Paris" CD, released at the Augsburg Mozart Festival in 2007 - a prize he had already received for several recordings with Musica Antiqua Köln. In spring 2010 he was presented once again with the Diapason d'Or for the newlyedited Deutsche Grammophon recording "Le Parnasse Francais" with Musica Antiqua Köln, whose original recording from 1978 had already won him the same award. Reinhard Goebel is the recipient of the Bach-Medaille of the City of Leipzig, which was awarded to him in 2017 among other things for his pioneering and ‘irrepressible exploration of the repertoire beyond the established names’. Lübeck honoured Reinhard Goebel in 1984 with the Buxtehude Prize, as did Magdeburg in 2002 with the Telemann Prize. As early as 1980 he won the Siemens Förderpreis, and in 1997 the Nordrhein-Westfalen state award, presented in person by the future German president, Johannes Rau.
In April 2007 the IMA award was conferred on him in London, and in 2015 the BBC Music Magazine chose him to appear on their list of the 20 best violinists of all time.