Her “technical fluency is unimpeachable. Her intonation … is impeccable. She plays with a ripe, absolutely luscious tone. Her use of vibrato is circumspect and period-appropriate. She is scrupulous about observing repeats and her use of ornamentation is elegant and understated. The fluidity and unself-conscious physicality of Gaillard’s playing keeps the listener aware that, except for the preludes, this is sunny, dance-based music.”
So wrote the critic Stephen Eddins (Allmusic) of her recent Bach recording (2011), while back in 2007 The Times hailed her “wizard fingering, big lyrical heart and kaleidoscope of colours”.
An insatiable curiosity, a taste for risk, an immoderate appetite for the whole of the concerted cello repertoire, complete disregard of limits and petty quarrels: those are no doubt the features that have always set this brilliant Franco-Swiss musician apart. Her passion? Working from the sources, inquiring into the text, using her virtuosity to bring out the musical discourse and make the music loved by all.
Named “Revelation: Solo Instrumentalist of the Year” at the French Classical Music Awards(Victoires) in 2003, she has since appeared in recital at many prestigious venues: Concertgebouw Bruges and Amsterdam; Bozarand Flagey, Brussels; the theatres of Bordeaux, Avignon, Poissy, Aix-en-Provence; the Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris; Oji Hall, Tokyo; London’s Wigmore Hall; and so on.
She also performs works of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, and has recorded, for instance, Britten’s complete Cello Suites and Piano Sonatas with Vanessa Wagner (Diapason d’Or, Choc du Monde de la Musique) and Pierre Bartholomée’s Oraison for solo cello.
Her solo album Dreams (Aparté) recorded in 2009 at the legendary Abbey Road Studios in London with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, proved to be a great public success.
Versatile artist, Ophelie Gaillard also regularly performs as a soloist with orchestras such as the Japan Philharmonic, the Royal Philharmonic, the Polish Radio Orchestra and the National Radio Orchestra of Romania, the Franz Liszt ChamberOrchestra of Budapest, the Moscow Chamber Orchestra, the Toulouse Chamber Orchestra, the Monte-Carlo Philharmonic Orchestra, the Slovak Philharmonic Orchestra, etc….
Ophélie Gaillard has won several prizes in major international competitions, including, most notably, The third prize of the J. S. Bach International Cello Competition in Leipzig in 1998. In 2010 she was invited to sit on the jury for the ARD International Cello Competition in Munich.
She appears regularly on radio (France Musique, France Culture, France Inter, Radio Classique, BBC Radio 3, Espace 2) and television (France 2, Mezzo, Arte).
2015 her double ALVORADA CD was awardedStar Recording by the Strad Magazine. This programme, a journey into popular Spanish and Latin American musics was on tour in France, Italy(MiTo Festival), Mexico (Cervantino Festival), withBrazilian singer Toquinho among others and 2016 her second CPEBACH recording was hailed by the critic and received a Diapason d’or, Choc de la Musique Classica, FFFF Telerama.
Among other recordings highly acclaimed as well, Exils with Bloch’s Schelomo coupled with the Korngold’s cello concerto with the Monte-Carlo Philharmonic Orchestra under British conductorJames Judd, Strauss’ Don Quixote with the CzechNational Symphony Orchestra, Boccherini with Pulcinella Orchestra.
Fond of encounters, she regularly shares the stage with Lambert Wilson, hip-hop dancer Ibrahim Sissoko, choreographers Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui and Damien Jalet, dancers Hugo Marchand and Ludmila Pagliero (Etoiles of the Opéra National de Paris), or Brazilian star singer of bossa nova Toquinho (live album Canto de sereia recorded for Aparté at the MiTo festival in 2017).
After a double album dedicated to Boccherini in 2019 recorded with the complicity of Sandrine Piau, Ophélie Gaillard and Pulcinella won in 2020 a wide audience success thanks to a double album Vivaldi, I colori dell’ombra recorded during the health crisis with mezzo-sopranos Lucile Richardot and Delphine Galou.
Beginning of 2021, Ophélie Gaillard offers us a journey through 100 years of opera arias with her new recording « Cellopera» accompanied by the “Vienna Morphing Orchestra”, under the baton of Frédéric Chaslin, thanks to transcriptions for cello and orchestra of works by Mozart, Verdi, Tchaikovski, Offenbach and Puccini.
March 2022, back to the 1730s, Ophélie Gaillard and Pulcinella together with guest artists Sandrine Piau and Lucile Richardot, meet Italian composers who tried their luck in London, such as Geminiani, Porpora, Bononcini and spend a poetic « Night in London ».
2014 she was appointed Professor at the Haute Ecole de Musique in Geneva and her recording of Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach’s cello concerti with Pulcinella was awarded DIAPASON D’OR of the year.
Ophélie Gaillard plays a cello by Francesco Goffriller (1737), generously on loan from the CIC, and also an anonymous Flemish violoncello piccolo.