"Thank you very much for giving us the opportunity to play in this wonderful hall on this splendid Bechstein piano. It was a pleasure for us."
The German-Greek pianist Danae Dörken belongs to a new generation of artists who stand out for their mastery of piano technique, their exceptional stage presence and the depth of their interpretations. Having been supported by Sir Yehudi Menuhin since the age of seven, Danae Dörken caused a sensation on Europe’s greatest stages due to what the Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger newspaper called her “sparkling playing pleasure”.
After studying with two internationally acclaimed teachers (Karl-Heinz Kämmerling and Lars Vogt), she performs regularly with major orchestras (Münchner Symphoniker, Royal Northern Sinfonia, Estonian National Symphony Orchestra, Norrlandsoperan Symphony, Düsseldorfer Symphoniker) in the most prestigious concert halls of London (Wigmore Hall), Vienna (Konzerthaus), Salzburg (Mozarteum), Zurich (Tonhalle), Brussels (Palais des Beaux-Arts), Lucerne (KKL), Cologne (Philharmonie), Munich (Gasteig), Essen (Philharmonie), Berlin (Konzerthaus), Hamburg (Laeiszhalle), Düsseldorf (Tonhalle), Frankfurt (Alte Oper) and Bonn (Beethoven-Haus). In addition, she regularly participates in numerous festivals such as Kissinger Sommer, Schwetzinger Festspiele, LuganoMusica, Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival, Dresdner Musikfestspiele, Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern and Kammermusik-Festival Spannungen in Heimbach.
A passionate chamber music interpreter, she performed with musicians such as Benjamin Beilman, Sharon Kam, Benedict Klöckner, Katia and Marielle Labèque, Christiane Oelze, Artur Pizarro, Gustav Rivinius, Lars Vogt and Carolin Widmann. Moreover, she regularly performs as a duo with her sister Kiveli Dörken and has recorded three albums with oboist Philippe Tondre that were released under the Parisian label Klarthe in cooperation with the SWR radio station.
In 2016, her CD of Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 21 and Mendelssohn’s Piano Concerto recorded with the Royal Northern Sinfonia was very well received by critics. She had previously recorded various Fantasias by Schumann, Schubert and Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach, that solo album released under the Ars Produktion label receiving the ICMA Award. As regards her very first CD recorded in 2012 under the same label with works by Leoš Janáček, it was enthusiastically received by critics. Also worth a mention are her two last albums, entitled East and West (Ars Produktion) and Zwischen Nostalgie und Revolution (Genuin), that were nominated for three different awards: Opus Klassik, ICMA Award and Preis der Deutschen Schallplattenkritik.
In 2015, Danae Dörken and her sister Kiveli founded the Molyvos International Music Festival (MIMF) on the Greek island of Lesbos. At a time characterized by the aftermaths of the financial and migrant crisis, this festival not only boosts the classical tradition on Lesbos, but also contributes to strengthening German-Greek relations over the long term through concerts and other charity events that are held in Germany throughout the year and feature soloists such as Maximilian Hornung, Sebastian Manz, Marlis Petersen, Linus Roth, Philippe Tondre and Lars Vogt. Also noteworthy is the fact that Danae Dörken’s social commitment has been reported on several occasions on television (TTT/WDR and Kulturzeit/3sat magazines) and in various other media.
Photos credits: Amanda Holden, Martin Teschner, Gregor Willmes