Born in Lleida, Catalunya, violinist Joan Plana alternates his career in the US and Europe between the worlds of both modern and baroque violin. Since moving to New York in 2009, Joan has built an active career as solo, orchestral and chamber musician. Highlights of the 2012-13 season include his debut in Asia on a 2-week recital tour throughout China as well as his appointments as the new concertmaster of The New York Society of Ancient Music and Baroque Band (Chicago).

He is the recipient of several prizes, awards and scholarships, including the Jeanne Lamon Scholarship Award, Arjau Competition Catalan contemporary music prize (Barcelona) and the Achievement Award from the Cleveland Institute of Music.

A founding member of the baroque ensemble CONCITATO, Joan also plays with a variety of early music groups around the country, with appearances in Cleveland, New York, Chicago, Aspen, Boston and Ravinia. In 2011 he was a member of the European Baroque Orchestra. He plays regularly with Handel and Haydn Society, Chicago Band, Il Pomo d’Oro, Trinity Wall Street Baroque Orchestra, Concert Royal, Apollo’s Fire, the American Classical Orchestra and New York Baroque Incorporated.

An advocate of contemporary music, he has premiered and recorded several works from Spanish and American composers, some of them written especially for him. He appears in groups such as BCN 216 (Barcelona), Arcos Orchestra, Metropolis Ensemble, Blind Ear Project, Axiom Ensemble and the New Juilliard Ensemble.

As a recitalist and chamber musician, Joan has performed concerts all over Europe, Canada and the US. He has recorded for radio and TV stations including the BBC, RAI, TVE, TV3, WQXR, WCLV and WFMT. His discography credits include recordings on Virgin, Sony, Naive and Ambroise.

He has played in concerts and festivals such as the Aspen Music Festival, Ravinia, Dame Myra Hess Concert Series (Chicago), Steinway Hall (New York), Boston Early Music Festival, York Early Music Festival (England), Auditori de Barcelona (Spain), Auditorio Nacional (Madrid, Spain), Alice Tully Hall (New York), Rencontres Musicals des Graves (France) and Festival de Torroella de Montgri (Spain).

An avid chamber musician, he founded the Arion BCN Quartet, while studying with the Ysaye Quartet in Barcelona. With the quartet, he won several national music competitions and played concerts all over Catalunya. He has been featured in concerts with different chamber music groups in the US (Chicago, Cleveland, New York and Boston) as well as Canada, Italy, Luxembourg, Switzerland and France. He was a member of the Intensive Quartet Program at the Cleveland Institute of Music, studying with the Cavani Quartet and Peter Salaff. He has been coached by members of the Casals, Cassatt, Ying and Tokio Quartets.

Further studies and masterclasses include teachers such as Josep-Lluis Puig, Solange Dessane Jose-Luis Garcia Asensio, Lewis Kaplan, Midori, Ruggiero Ricci, Pierre Reach, and on baroque violin with Enrico Onofri, Riccardo Minasi, Stefano Montanari and Fabio Biondi.

He has participated as a student in festivals such as the Bowdoin International Music Festival (Maine), Sommerakademie at the Mozarteum of Salzburg (Austria), Encuentros Musicales de Santander (Spain), Aspen Music Festival (Colorado), Zephyr Music Festival (Italy) and “Musica en Compostela” (Spain).

Joan started his violin studies with Francesc Rodoreda at the Conservatori Professional de Musica de Lleida. While there, he obtained an Honorable Mention and received the 1st Prize from the Conservatory Music Competition. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree with Honors from the Escola Superior de Musica de Catalunya (ESMUC) in Barcelona, studying with Kai Gleusteen, Agustin Leon Ara and the Ysaye Quartet. Thanks through the support of the Fundacio Privada Sorigue, Joan moved to Cleveland in 2005 to study with the renowned teacher Paul Kantor, at the Cleveland Institute of Music. He received a Master of Music and a Professional Studies Degree from CIM as well as an Early Music Certificate from the Case Western Reserve University. He graduated from The Juilliard School’s Historical Performance Program (New York), studying with Monica Huggett and Cynthia Roberts. He is pursuing a Doctorate of Musical Arts at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, studying with Cynthia Roberts and Robert Mealy.

Joan Plana
Photos © 2013 Sonia Tapiolas   All Rights Reserved