She captivates us with her "tremendous temperament, huge musicality and breathtaking instrumental technique" (Kölner Stadtanzeiger). She offers us "exciting expressiveness in rich colours" (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung). The Nordbayerischer Kurier finds her "the absolute apogee of mellifluous and feminine feeling for sound", even a "singing swan of the cello". Especially prized by the music press and audiences the world over is Joanna's bewitching power of expression, which she exemplifies in all musical styles. Hand in hand with this goes her love of experimentation, demonstrated by her broad-minded approach to playing in the most varied of instrumental combinations. As well as relishing the challenges of the solo repertoire, Joanna is both a committed chamber and orchestral musician, and has always regarded orchestral playing as an extended form of chamber music.
Particularly worthy of mention in this context are the unconventional ensembles in which this versatile cellist can often be heard, for instance duos with double bass, and the Trio Concerto Angelico (violin, cello and organ), of which she is a founder member. Furthermore she was a permanent member of Bronsky Ritual (flute, cello, classical guitar and percussion), a Cologne-based ensemble specialising in contemporary music, which has collaborated, amongst others, with the Hilliard Ensemble (London). An example of the works Joanna enjoys playing is the "Stabat Mater" by Knut Nystedt for a cappella choir and solo cello.
"For me, playing the cello means expressing something which usually can't be communicated with words alone. It's a question of getting involved in this 'musical conversation' in all its rich nuances." This is how Joanna describes her philosophy, which has influenced her career right from the start, and to which she remains faithful to the present day.
Joanna Sachryn was born into a family of musicians, giving her debut of the Lalo concerto after only four years of study, to the great interest of the Polish public. At the age of sixteen she toured with Jeunesses Musicales to Paris and to London, where the Observer already extolled her great expressiveness. At seventeen, alongside musical studies, schooling, and numerous solo concerts, Joanna took on the solo cello position at Stettin Opera, at the same time winning prizes in numerous national competitions.
Although the Iron Curtain was a major impediment, she went on to study with Gerhard Mantel in Frankfurt, ultimately graduating from his Solistenklasse. After this, she continued her studies in London for two years with William Pleeth, the teacher of Jacqueline du Pré. As a student she was a scholarship holder from Villa Musica in Mainz. Repertoire study with Mstislav Rostropovich made a strong impression on her further development, as has her collaboration with the leading musical personalities of our time, such as Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Sir Georg Solti and Rudolf Barschai. It is to the latter, and also to her friendship with Krzysztof Meyer, that Joanna particularly owes her deep understanding of the music of Shostakovich.
Joanna's repertoire stretches from Baroque continuo to cello compositions by Haydn, Beethoven, Schubert, Schumann and many others, and through the late Romantic literature to the works of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Alongside the standard Romantic repertoire, she particularly espouses modern music, such as the cello concertos of Hindemith, Shostakovich, Friedrich Gulda (with wind orchestra), Peter Ruzicka, Hans Werner Henze and Krzysztof Meyer.
She is the cellist of the internationally renowned Cologne Piano Trio, which is regularly invited to give concerts and masterclasses in Europe, Asia and South America.
Since 2008 she has been a member of the Vienna Cello Ensemble "5+1". Founded by a cellist of the Vienna Philharmonic, these cello ambassadors dedicate themselves to works of every imaginable style with great virtuosity and originality.
Joanna's chamber music partners have included pianists Günter Ludwig, Paul Rivinius and Justus Franz, violinist Thomas Christian, cellists Boris Pergamenschikow, Martin Ostertag, Johannes Goritzki and Eleonora Schoenfeld, double bass players Günther Klaus, Wolfgang Güttler and Boguslaw Furtok, oboist Ingo Goritzki, and violists Deinhart Goritzki and Mile Kosi.
She has performed at the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival, the Rheingau Music Festival, the Menuhin Festival Gstaad, and the Liana Issakadze Festival in Georgia.
Amongst the orchestras with which she has played, also as a soloist, are the Deutscher Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, the Munich Philharmonic, the WDR Symphony Orchestra Cologne and the NDR Symphony Orchestra Hamburg, the Korean Chamber Ensemble, the German Radio Chamber Orchestra and the Philharmonia Orchestra (London).
As a teacher Joanna is also widely esteemed. She gives regular masterclasses for chamber music and cello in Germany (Haus Marteau), South America and Asia.
From 2014 she will be guest professor at the renowned Tongji University in Shanghai. Joanna Sachryn plays "Il Canone" - a cello that was built by Urs W. Mächler.
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