"Without music, life would be a mistake." - Friedrich Nietzsche

“Throughout the entire evening, Gees played as though he were the creator of the compositions, making sure that everything would come together as he had envisaged it. His eyes were not just those of a reproducing artist, but the flaring ones of one who is on fire, as we imagine a creative composer.”
N. Campogrande

Aged three, the piano is his favourite toy; from the age of five he receives formal lessons; aged eight, he wins the Steinway Competition as well as a scholarship enabling him to study at the Salzburg Mozarteum.

Hailed as the “Westphalian Mozart”, he trains at the Vienna and Detmold conservatoires and it seems as though nothing can stand in the way of a career as a pianist. The talented child, however, doesn’t want to be limited to technical exercises but instead longs to explore the world of sounds on his own terms, rediscovering it again and again, note by note.

At the age of fifteen, the “prodigy” flees the pressures of his predestined career, leaving behind his school, conservatoire and home, earning a living through odd jobs, as an archaeological assistant, and also by going to sea for two years.

In 1974, he is unexpectedly offered a place to study at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater in Hanover. He develops his pianistic talent individually, composes and gains international renown as a first-class lieder accompanist, performing across the globe.

Through his playing he revives the long-forgotten tradition of using the work as an opportunity for extemporisation.

He goes on to found the Consol Theater which opens in 2001: here, children, teenagers and adults are encouraged and inspired to discover and realise their own creative impulses.

His own Forum Kunstvereint, alongside CPO and EMI, have issued numerous CDs with Michael Gees. As of 2007, he is associated with Challenge Classics: the recording of Die schöne Müllerin with Christoph Prégardien wins the 2009 MIDEM Classical Award and also Recording of the Year. Releases since then, including song recitals with Julia Kleiter, Anna Lucia Richter and Julian Prégardien, as well as solo recordings ImproviSatie, Beyond Schumann and Bach – Mendelssohn – Adaptations increasingly show Michael Gees in his element, treating the scores creatively.

Michael Gees programmes solo and song recitals between tradition and new ground. He has been teaching Vocal Improvisation and Song Invention at the Cologne Musikhochschule since 2009.

Featured on

Song Cycles - Die schöne Müllerin / Schwanengesang / Winterreise
Christoph Prégardien / Andreas Staier / Michael Gees
Father & Son (re-issue)
Christoph & Julian Prégardien
Blooming
Michael Gees / Bella Adamova
Dichterliebe Op. 48 / Lenau-Lieder und Requiem Op. 90 / Wesendonck Lieder
Christoph Prégardien / Michael Gees
A Matter of Heart
Olivier Darbellay / Christoph Prégardien / Michael Gees
Bach - Mendelssohn - Metamorphosis
Michael Gees
Liederkreis
Anna Lucia Richter & Michael Gees
Secret Key Masters
Michael Gees / Frans Ehlhart / Marion von Tilzer
Father & Son
Christoph & Julian Prégardien
The Spirit Of Turtle [Longbox]
Various artists
Beyond Schumann
Michael Gees
Winterreise (BluRay)
Christoph Prégardien / Michael Gees
Winterreise
Christoph Prégardien / Michael Gees
Winterreise (DVD)
Christoph Prégardien / Michael Gees
Schöne Welt, wo bist Du?
Julia Kleiter / Michael Gees
ImproviSatie
Michael Gees
Between life and death - Songs and Arias
Christoph Prégardien / Michael Gees
Die schöne Müllerin
Christoph Prégardien / Michael Gees

Videos

Christoph Prégardien & Michael Gees on Vrije Geluiden (part 1)
Christoph Prégardien & Michael Gees on Vrije Geluiden (part 2)
Trailer Michael Gees - ImproviSatie
Michael Gees - Die Nachtigall
Winterreise official trailer
Film "Winterreise" official trailer (including interviews) - Christoph Prégardien & Michael Gees
Michael Gees - 'Beyond Schumann' - trailer
Michael Gees - 'Beyond Schumann'
Christoph and Julian Prégardien and Michael Gees: 'Father & Son'
Anna Lucia Richter & Michael Gees - Liederkreis
ella Adamova & Michael Gees - from the album 'Blooming': 'я буду петь, земная и чужая'