January 27, 1976 |
|Associated acts||Ehnes Quartet|
Life and career
Ehnes was born in Brandon, Manitoba, the son of Alan Ehnes, long time trumpet professor at Brandon University (Canada), and Barbara Withey Ehnes, former ballerina with Les Grands Ballets Canadiens, Ruth Page's International Ballet, and Chicago Ballet, and former director of the Brandon School of Dance. Ehnes began his violin studies at the age of four and at age nine became a protégé of the noted Canadian violinist Francis Chaplin. He studied with Sally Thomas at the Meadowmount School of Music and from 1993 to 1997 at The Juilliard School, winning the Peter Mennin Prize for Outstanding Achievement and Leadership in Music upon his graduation.
In October 2005, he was awarded a Doctor of Music degree (honoris causa) from Brandon University and in July 2007 he became the youngest person ever elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. In 2010, he was made a Member of the Order of Canada.
Ehnes performs on the 1715 "Marsick" Stradivarius. His commercial recordings have won numerous awards and prizes, including 9 Junos, a Grammy, and a Gramophone Award. Ehnes tours with his string quartet, the Ehnes Quartet, and is Artistic Director of the Seattle Chamber Music Society. In an interview with the music writer Thomas May, Ehnes explained why he feels such compatibility with his fellow string quartet members (violinist Amy Schwartz Moretti, violist Richard O’Neill, and cellist Robert deMaine): "We share the same sound ideal. And we naturally feel pulse and pacing in basically the same way." 
Ehnes lives in Bradenton, Florida with his wife and two children.
- 1995 Niccolò Paganini: 24 Caprices for Solo Violin
- 2000 Sergei Prokofiev: The Two Violin Sonatas and Five Melodies
- 2000 Maurice Ravel | Claude Debussy | Camille Saint-Saëns
- 2000 Johann Sebastian Bach: The Six Sonatas & Partitas for Solo Violin
- 2001 Max Bruch: Violin Concertos Nos. 1 & 3
- 2001 French Showpieces
- 2002 Bruch: Concerto No. 2 and Scottish Fantasy
- 2002 Fritz Kreisler
- 2003 Piano Quintets
- 2004 Romantic Pieces
- 2004 Henryk Wieniawski | Pablo de Sarasate
- 2005 Luigi Dallapiccola
- 2005 Ernő Dohnányi
- 2005 Johann Nepomuk Hummel
- 2005 John Adams: Road Movies
- 2005 Antonín Dvořák: Concertos
- 2005 Bach: Sonatas for Violin and Harpsichord Vol.1
- 2006 Bach: Sonatas for Violin and Harpsichord Vol.2
- 2006 Mozart: Mozart Anniversary Orchestra - 2-CD set
- 2007 Paul Schoenfield: Cafe Music, 4 Souvenirs
- 2006 Samuel Barber, Erich Wolfgang Korngold, William Walton: Violin Concertos
- 2007 Edward Elgar: Violin Concerto
- 2008 Homage
- 2009 Niccolò Paganini: 24 Caprices for Solo Violin.
- 2010 Felix Mendelssohn: Violin concerto
- 2011 Bartók: Violin Concertos and Viola Concerto
- 2011 Tchaikovsky: Complete works for violin
- 2012 Bartók: Works for violin and piano, vol. 1
- 2012 Tchaikovsky: The Sleeping Beauty
- 2013 Bartók: Works for violin and piano, vol. 2
- 2013 Britten and Shostakovich violin concertos
- 2013 Prokofiev: Complete works for violin
- 2013 Tchaikovsky: Swan Lake
- 2014 Khachaturian & Shostakovich: Violin Concerto & String Quartet no. 7 & 8
- 2014 Bartók: Works for violin and piano, vol. 3
- 2014 American Chamber Music
- Hanson, Philip (1 October 1998). "The Boy from Brandon: Canada's Violin Hope". La Scena Musicale. Retrieved 17 February 2012.
- Cloutier, Annabelle (30 June 2010). "Governor General announces 74 new appointments to the Order of Canada". Governor General of Canada. Retrieved 22 April 2014.
- May, Thomas (14 July 2015). "Star violinist James Ehnes on his ‘other’ life as a chamber musician". The Strad. Retrieved 25 July 2015.
- Andrew Clements (2009-10-22). "Paganini: 24 Caprices: James Ehnes/Paganini: 24 Caprices: Thomas Zehetmair". The Guardian. Retrieved 2015-06-30.
- Fiona Maddocks (2013-01-19). "Bartók: Works for Violin and Piano Vol 2: Sonatas and Folk Dances – review". The Observer. Retrieved 2015-06-30.