Nicolas Altstaedt received international attention in July 2006, when he won the first prize at the Adam International Cello Competition in New Zealand, that includes a recording contract with Naxos and a tour with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra.
Nicolas Altstaedt was born in Heidelberg in 1982 and is of German and French parentage. From 1996 to 2001 he was a "young student" in Marcio Carneiro’s class at the Hochschule für Musik in Detmold and after passing his A-levels, he went to the Basel Music Academy to study under Ivan Monighetti. More recently, he studied with Boris Pergamenschikow at the Academy of Music Hanns Eisler in Berlin, where he is now continuing his studies with David Geringas. Furthermore he has been influenced by Mstislav Rostropovich, Tabea Zimmermann, Heinrich Schiff and Anner Bylsma.
Altstaedt has won a number of awards in recent years like the 1st Prize in the Lausanne "Concours d’Interpretation Musicale internationale" 2003, the "Landgrave of Hesse Prize" of the Kronberg Academy 2004, the 1st prize in the German Music Competition 2005 and in the International Domnik Cello Competition in Stuttgart 2005.
He has given concert performances with orchestras like the Basel Symphony Orchestra, the Radio Symphony Orchestra of Berlin, the Kremerata Baltica, the Young Sound Forum of Central Europe, the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra, the Brandenburgische Staatskapelle and the Sinfonietta Frankfurt. Concert tours have taken him all over Europe as well as to Africa, the Middle East, Korea (Seoul Arts Center, Sejong Center), Japan and festivals like the "Schleswig-Holstein Musikfestival", "Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern", "les museiques" in Basel, "Beethovenfest Bonn", "Klavierfestival Ruhr", the "Ludwigsburger Schloßfestspiele" and the "Cellofestival Kronberg".
Accompanied by the composers at the piano, Altstaedt has premiered several compositions dedicated to him by Moritz Eggert and Franghiz Ali-Zadeh. He has also worked closely with the composers Sofia Gubaidulina and Wilhelm Killmayer. Moreover, he is a dedicated chamber musician and has played with such musicians as Gidon Kremer, Yuri Bashmet, Daniel Hope, Alexander Lonquich, Kirill Gerstein, Severin von Eckardstein and the bajan player Elsbeth Moser.
Apart from the conventional concert scene, he is repeatedly involved in cross-border projects. For example, he has played with musicians from Palestine and Mongolia in places such as the Gobi Desert, Ramallah and Baghdad. Last year he was invited to Gidon Kremer’s Festival in Lockenhaus and made his Japan debut in Suntory Hall, Tokyo with the Schumann concerto.
This year Altstaedt performed with Gidon Kremer, Katja Skanavi and Anna Gourari in Latvia and again at the Lockenhaus Festival. A Korean tour with Elsbeth Moser is upcoming.
Nicolas Altstaedt plays a violoncello by Nicolas Lupot (Paris 1821) that has been generously loaned to him by the Deutsche Stiftung Musikleben. His debut CD will be released on the "Genuin" label next year.