Carlos Damas (born 1973) is a leading Portuguese classical violinist and recording artist for Dux Records, Brilliant Classics, and Naxos. He is particularly known for his Fritz Kreisler interpretations and world premiere recordings of works by the Portuguese composers António Fragoso, Luís de Freitas Branco, Fernando Lopes-Graça and Sérgio Azevedo.
Life and career
Damas was born in Coimbra where he began his musical studies at the Coimbra Conservatory at the age of three. When he was six, his family moved to Lisbon where he continued his violin studies with Vasco Broco, Leonor Prado,and Alexandra Mendes. He made his solo concert debut when he was 15 in a performance with the Portuguese Radio Symphony Orchestra conducted by Joaquim da Silva Pereira. He then pursued further studies at the Paris Conservatory with Jacqueline Lefèvre and Ivry Gitlis. He premiered Luís de Freitas Branco's Concert for Violin in Paris in 1993. Sérgio Azevedo's Reflections on a Portuguese Lullaby for solo violin and string orchestra was written for and dedicated to Damas.
Damas is a regular soloist with the Orquestra Metropolitana de Lisboa., Prague Philharmonic Orchestra, Camerata de St. Severin, Camerata da Madeira, Winnipeg Symphony, Guanzhou Symphony Orchestra, St. Luke's Orchestra, Mission Chamber Orchestra of San José. He has also performed in Macao with the Macao Chamber Orchestra several times since 1997 and has appeared as a soloist in concerts organized by the Melody for Dialogue Among Civilizations Association in conjunction with UNESCO, including a performance of the Bach Double Violin Concerto at Lincoln Center in 2007. Carlos Damas has a PhD in Education and Psychology of Music. Is instrument is one Giovanni Battista Gabrielli, the "ex-Isham", dated from 1763.
Carlos Damas made the first world recordings of several Portuguese composers music, recorded for the labels Dux, Brilliant Classics, and Naxos:
- Jean Sibelius - Works for Violin and Piano (to be released by Etcetera September 2016)
- Frederico de Freitas - Complete Violin Works (Brilliant Classics, 2015)
- Armando José Fernandes (Brilliant Classics, 2014)
- António Fragoso (Brilliant Classics, 2011)
- Luís de Freitas Branco (Naxos, 2010)
- Fritz Kreisler (DUX Records 2009)
- Carlos Damas - Modern Solo Violin Music, including the first recordings of Lopes-Graça's Espçonsais and Azevedo's Sonatina No. 1 (DUX Records 2007)
- Beethoven, Sonatas for violin and piano nº4 & nº5" (MasterClassics/Universal 2004)
- Carlos Damas - Violino Solo (Numérica 2000)
- Diálogos do Silêncio (Tradisom/Sony 1997)
- Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy (Numérica 1995)
- Jornal da Madeira. (24 October 2012). "Violinista Carlos Damas grava compositores portugueses para editoras internacionais". Retrieved 13 February 2014 (in Portuguese).
- Castelo-Branco, Salwa (2010). Enciclopédia da Música em Portugal no século XX. 4. Lisbon: Círculo de Leitores. p. 1382. ISBN 9789724245980.[need quotation to verify]
- AvA Musical Editions. "Reflections on a Portuguese Lullaby". Retrieved 13 February 2014.
- Jornal Tribuna de Macau (29 January 2010). "Perfil de um virtuouso". Retrieved 13 February 2014 (in Portuguese).
- Italian Camões Association "Reflections on a Portuguese Lullaby". Retrieved 5 February 2012.
- Orquestra Metropolitana de Lisboa (2014). "Carlos Damas". Retrieved 13 February 2014 (in Portuguese).
- Luso (6 June 2012). "Violinista Carlos Damas atua no sábado em Macau". Diário de Notícias. Retrieved 13 February 2014 (in Portuguese).
- Melody for Dialogue Among Civilizations Association (2007). "Melody for Peace L'Italiana in Algeri (Rossini), but not only…)". Retrieved 13 February 2014.
- Byzantion (September 2012). Review: António Fragoso: Complete Chamber Music for Violin". MusicWeb International. Retrieved 13 February 2014.
- McQuiston, Bob (29 November 2011). "Classical Lost and Found: Branco's Laudable But Overlooked Sonatas". NPR. Retrieved 13 February 2014.
- Haylock, Julian (October 2009) Review: Kreisler: Violin miniatures: original works and arrangements" The Strad. Retrieved 13 February 2014.
- Druce, Duncan (2007). "Review: Modern Solo Violin Music". Gramophone, Vol. 85, p, 109. Quote: "The two Portuguese items are both first recordings."