Ernst-Martin Schmidt studied in Berlin at the Hanns Eisler Academy of Music with Gerhard Riedel and Walter Küssner and was a scholarship holder at the Karajan Academy of the Berlin Philharmonic. He has played with the Berliner Barocksolisten and, as a passionate chamber musician, performs in various duo and trio formations in Germany and abroad.
The beauty of our profession is that I really look forward to not just some, but to so many composers when they are on the programme, whether Mozart, Brahms, Ravel, all the Czech composers, Tchaikovsky, Prokofiev, Beethoven, Mendelssohn or Mahler... But then again, I think my special favourite is Schubert. My dream is to perform the heavenly trio of the Great C Major Symphony once in an endless loop, for not less than two hours, three would be even better! (And here’s my insider tip: it’s actually most beautiful on the viola.)
Yes, there is. My parents had a record of the 6th Brandenburg Concerto among their albums. I listened to it inside out and knew that the viola would be my instrument of choice. One fine day (it was a Saturday) I tuned all the strings of my half or three-quarter-size violin down a fifth to finally be able to play along with the record; there was a reason I knew the music by heart! When I returned the strings to violin level, disaster struck: two snapped strings and a broken bridge, to the chagrin of my parents, who fortunately turned out to be supportive. And so I became – not quickly, of course, but steadily – a happy violist.
A good, strong espresso.