Volker Ziemendorff


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No es necesario sufrir una tendinitis para ser un virtuoso

“Que cada nota tenga vida”... –‘técnica’ no consiste en bajar teclas rápido

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Fausto Zadra

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Volker Ziemendorff lives in Germany and in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Active internationally as a concert pianist, with equal passion he dedicates himself to teaching, especially with pianistically advanced students.

He has a profound knowledge of the school of the great argentinian-italian pianist Fausto Zadra, with whom he studied during nine years, and is author of a detailed description and analysis of its teachings and concepts about piano technique and its didactics. Moreover, he has acquired ample experience in applying it and transmitting it to his students.

• • • • •


Beginning his university studies in literature and languages, among other subjects, with a scholarship from the Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes, Volker Ziemendorff went on to study piano with Ralf Nattkemper—a former student of Yara Bernette, Fausto Zadra and Wilhelm Kempff—at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater Hamburg (Germany). Additionally, he participated in various masterclasses, amongst others with Jenny Zaharieva (Sofia) und the Claudio Arrau student, Nelson delle Vigne-Fabbri (Brussels).

Independently from his studies in the Hamburg Hochschule, for many years he studied with Fausto Zadra in his Ecole Internationale de Piano (Lausanne, Switzerland), a place where young pianists from all over Europe used to meet and learn.

In recitals, chamber music and as a soloist with orchestra, he has played in Germany, Argentina, France, Spain, Italy, Switzerland and Great Britain, and has been invited to international festivals in France and Argentina.

He is the author of a detailed technical and didactical analysis of the Zadra school, which is known to stand out especially among the great piano traditions, as a refined ‘school of touch’, leading—not least by way of a systematic study of physiology and movements—to physical liberty and suppleness, subtlety of touch and sound, and great liberty of expression.

Over various years he was assistant to Prof. Nattkemper in the pianistical training of his students at the Hochschule in Hamburg. Up to the present day, Ziemendorff dedicates an important part of his activity to teaching, in masterclasses or with his own regular students.

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Press reviews, commentaries

    “... he convinced the audience with an impeccable interpretation of Mozart’s concerto K 415.”

           Argentinisches Tageblatt/Diario Argentino (Buenos Aires)


    “Ziemendorff gave a priviledged place to the work’s architecture and formal unity, its clear and impeccable exposition, detailed in phrasing ...
    “He rendered Schumann’s Kreisleriana with propriety, with pulchritude and intellectual honesty, and a reflective kind of distance that impeded the habitual excesses in the changeable characters of each of the eight musical episodes.
    “The concert constituated ... a musical audition of sufficient merit to underline the high standard of the pianistic art in our musical ambience.”

           Héctor Coda, La Nación (Buenos Aires)


    “... With two sonatas, by Haydn and Mozart, Ziemendorff opened the recital in a ‘classical’ manner in the word’s best sense. ... Once and again, Volker Ziemendorff exposed these contrasts in an accomplished way, fascinating his audience by his unrestrained virtuosity.
    “His pianistical mastery, however, over a wide extent of his programme made itself felt in a more introvert and often lyrical, rather than wild and extravert way of playing. With four works by argentinian composers, the pianist offered a musical vista of his country of choice, immediately evoking that particular mixture of melancholy and joie-de-vivre which he himself described as ‘bitter-sweet’, and which thoroughly captivated his audience.
    “Following this moment of south-american inspiration which bestowed a very special, almost exotic note on the night, the pianist closed the concert with romantic piano music by Chopin, which—conceived in a sparkling and fervent manner—set a truly enthralling final point to an inspiring and varied recital.”

           Frank Ebert, Stuttgarter Zeitung


    “... the best interpretation of Schubert’s sonata in A mayor [D 959] that I have heard in my life.”

           A. Gialdini (Buenos Aires)


    “... shows intellectual comprehension of the finer points of style and is always thoughtful in his interpretations.
    “... presented with understanding and sense of form ...”

           Pablo Bardin, Buenos Aires Herald


    “... notable dedication and professional seriousness. He possesses excellent pianistical qualities and a musical intelligence and sensibility of the highest order.
    “His musical talent and his particular pedagogical disposition Englio destine him to express himself in pianistic teaching. ...”

           F. Zadra (Rome)


    “... of all the musicians that I have come to know over the years of my activity at the Hamburg Musikhochschule, he is one of the most sensitive, intelligent and sincere; one with artistic integrity. ... His playing stands out for great intensity, an unerring feeling for musical style, and deep comprehension of the compositions.”

           R. Nattkemper (Hamburg)


    “... makes the piano ‘speak’”

           S. Dematteis (Buenos Aires)


    “Never before I came to understand like this what it means to stir to life a piece of music.”

           P. Hartung (Regensburg)


    “I congratulate you on your touch.”

    “... opens up the music to the hearer ... One couldn’t imagine it better in any way ... full of nuances ... All routine is being abandoned, and one learns to hear it all afresh and anew.”

    “One was wishing the music would go on forever and the piece would never end...”

    “Never in any way impersonal, always ‘Volker Ziemendorff’.”

    “One of the most beautiful concerts that we have had here.”

    “We all know there are many nowadays who can play fast and loud, or even fast and soft ... But you have something to say.”

    “He plays ‘from within’.”

           (Commentaries by listeners)


    “That was the best that could be heard in this concert hall over the last years”

           Höchster Kreisblatt (Frankfurt on the Main)

• • • • •

Examples of recital programmes from recent years

Haydn – Sonata in E-flat major, Hob. XVI:49
Schumann – Kreisleriana, op. 16

Schubert – Impromptu in C minor, op. 90 nº 1, D 899
Mozart – Fantasy in C minor, K 475
Mozart – Sonata in A major, K 331
Schubert – Sonata in B-flat major, D 960

Bach – Partita nº 2 in C minor
Schubert – Sonata in A major, op. post. 120, D 664
Brahms – Six Piano Pieces, op. 118

Bach – Prelude and Fugue in E major (Well-Tempered Clavier, book I)
Mozart – Sonata in C major, K 545
Beethoven – Sonata in E-flat major, op. 7
Chopin – various preludes, nocturnes and mazurkas
Guastavino – Bailecito

Bach – Partita nº 1 in B-flat major
Chopin – Scherzo nº 1 in B minor
Debussy – 3 preludes
Beethoven – Sonata in D minor, op. 31 nº 2 (‘The Tempest’)

Mozart – Sonata in C major, K 330
Chopin – 2 nocturnes, 6 mazurkas
Schubert – Sonata in A major, D 959

Haydn – Sonata in E-flat major, Hob. XVI:49
Mozart – Sonata in C minor, K 457
Schubert – 3 Moments Musicaux, Impromptu op. 142 nº 1
Gianneo – Bailecito
Guastavino – Bailecito
Sáenz – Tango
Ginastera – Danza de la Moza Donosa
Chopin – Scherzo nº 2 in B-flat minor

• Various concertos with orchestra, with special emphasis on Mozart (K 246, 415, 466, 488, 595, amongst others)