German concert organist Felix Hell is a phenomenon in several ways. Hailed as the “most well known young concert organist worldwide” (Dr. John Weaver), and “undoubtedly one of the major talents of the century” (Dr. Frederick Swann, AGO president), he “sets standards that many established and honoured older players would struggle to equal” (Michael Barone in “The American Organist”).
Felix has had an active concert career since the age of nine and has already performed more than 700 recitals throughout his native Germany, as well as Australia, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Iceland, Italy, Jamaica, Korea, Latvia, New Zealand, Norway, Malaysia, Singapore, Spain, Russia, and the USA, where he performed more than 450 recitals in 44 states.
At the age of 21, Felix Hell received global recognition for his performances of the entire organ works of Johann Sebastian Bach in three full cycles, presenting roughly 250 works, totalling close to 20 hours of performance time in each of them. Furthermore, he has performed the complete organ works of Felix Mendelssohn in New York City, commemorating the composer’s 200th birthday.
Felix Hell has been soloist with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Charleston Symphony Orchestra, the Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra, the Jacksonville Symphony, the New England Conservatory Philharmony, the National Academy Orchestra of Canada, the McGill Chamber Orchestra, the Gettysburg Chamber Orchestra, the Deutsche Streicherphilharmonie, the Kurpfälzisches Kammerorchester and the Pfalztheaterorchester Kaiserslautern. In November of 2004, Felix gave his debut performance in the famous Boston Symphony Hall.
Felix Hell was born in 1985 in Frankenthal/Pfalz, Germany. He took his first piano lesson at the age of seven, followed by his first organ lesson six months later. At age 11, Mr. Hell continued his studies at the Hochschule für Kirchenmusik in Heidelberg, studying with Johannes Michel and with Christiane Michel-Ostertun. During this period, he was also coached by Professors Martin Lücker, Frankfurt; Pieter van Dijk, Amsterdam; Oleg Yantchenko, Moscow; Wolfgang Rübsam, Saarbrücken; Leo Krümer, Speyer; Franz Lehrndorfer, Munich; and Robert Griffith, Delaware/Ohio
In September 1999, Felix Hell enrolled at The Juilliard School in New York. Two years later, Mr. Hell was admitted to the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, where he studied with Dr. John Weaver. While at Curtis, he received valuable impulses through coachings and masterclasses with Professors Martin Jean, Marie-Claire Alain, Joan Lippincott and Gillian Weir. In May of 2004, Felix Hell received his Bachelor of Music degree, making him – at the age of 18 – the youngest organ major ever to graduate from this prestigious institute. Felix Hell pursued his graduate studies under the guidance of Professor Donald Sutherland at the Peabody Institute in Baltimore, where he received his Artist Diploma degree in May of 2007 and his Master of Music degree in 2008. In 2009, Felix Hell was awarded Johns Hopkins University’s prestigious Outstanding Graduate Award. Currently, Mr. Hell is enrolled in the Doctor of Musical Arts program at Peabody. Since 1999, Felix Hell has consistently received merit-based full tuition scholarships for his entire studies.
Felix Hell is member of the American Guild of Organists, the Organ Historical Society, the German Gesellschaft der Orgelfreunde and the Organ Society of Sydney. He is Organ Artist Associate at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in Manhattan, as well as Distinguished Organist in Residence at the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Gettysburg, PA. In 2007, Mr. Hell was appointed as Adjunct Professor for Organ at the Sunderman Conservatory in Gettysburg, PA. As of 2011, Felix Hell holds the position of Distinguished Visiting Artist at Kosin University in Busan, South Korea.
Felix Hell’s discography includes eight CDs, encompassing an organ repertoire of five centuries. All of his recordings have been critically acclaimed by the public as well as by experts. His music is frequently broadcast on radio stations throughout the United States, including PIPEDREAMS of Minnesota Public Radio, as well as by radio stations in Germany, the Netherlands, Australia, New Zealand, and by the BBC. He was featured on TV at ABC and NBC, and the German TV stations ARD, ZDF, SWR, RTL, DW, SAT1, and 3SAT.