Hélène Grimaud, as we well know, is not only a pianist. She has another passion, the protection of nature and that of wolves.
Human rights activist
Hélène Grimaud is not only a pianist passionate about music that plays its instrument with great poetry and impeccable technique, she also proved to be a great advocate for the protection of nature, a fervent human rights activist and a talented woman of letters. Born in Aix-en-Provence in 1969, she was admitted to the Paris Conservatory at the age of thirteen and won the first piano prize three years later, in 1985. In 1987, she gave her first recital in Tokyo and is invited by Daniel Barenboïm to play with the Orchester de Paris. It’s the beginning of a sparkling career. She performs with many prestigious orchestras under the leadership of renowned chefs.
A passion for wolves
Hélène Grimaud leaves the conservatory before the end of her training: a decision that does not prevent her from taking international competitions and flying to the United States, the territory of an elsewhere she has been looking for since childhood. , and meeting ground with Alawa, she-wolf who will trigger a real passion for these animals. As she recounts in her book ‘Wild Variations’, she is divided between the piano and wolves, two complementary passions that she has cultivated for years. She founded the Wolf Conservation Center in New York State . “To be able to participate actively in the protection of animals and put them back in the place that is theirs, there is nothing more rewarding,” she says. But the commitment of Hélène Grimaud does not stop there: she is also a member of the organization Musicians for Human Rights, a worldwide network of musicians and people working in the music field who work to promote a culture of human rights and social change.
A talented writer
Hélène Grimaud also finds the time to cultivate another hobby: writing. She is the author of three books which have been translated into several languages. The first, Variations sauvages, appeared in 2003. It was followed by two partly autobiographical novels: Leçons in 2005, and Return to Salem in 2013, in which she recounts her life and her admiration for Brahms. It is however with his musical interpretations, where intense reflection and a expressive tenderness, that it touches the audience deeply. A vast audience, because its concerts with orchestra and his recitals take him all over the world. His contribution prodigious in the world of classical music has been recognized by the French government who made her a Knight of the Legion of Honor. Hélène Grimaud is undoubtedly a multi-talented artist. The commitment depth she demonstrates in the musical field, both in concert and in her recordings, finds an echo in the amplitude and intensity of her other passions, whether environmental, literary or artistic.