"Clémence de Forceville is a remarkable violonist, playing with virtuosity and refined artistry."

Daniel Barenboim

Interview La Lettre du Musicien

"The work of the chamber orchestra is organic"


Clémence de Forceville has just won the solo violin competition of the Orchestre de chambre de Paris. She talks to La Lettre du Musicien about her departure from the Sōra Trio and her desire to diversify. 

Last May, you left the Sōra Trio, of which you had been a member since 2019. Why did you take this decision? 

The trio was an extraordinary experience. We recorded a triple album, carried out extremely thorough research, especially around Beethoven, etc. But it demanded a total commitment, 80 to 100% of my time. Before joining the trio, I was doing solo concerts, string quartet, solo violin... This was exclusive. But I felt that I needed variety, that, from an artistic point of view, I was no longer satisfied. It's important in chamber music that everyone looks in the same direction and that was no longer the case. And I am delighted that my two former partners have found Amanda Favier. 



You will join the Paris Chamber Orchestra in January 2022. Why did you aim for this position? 


The job of concertmaster appeals to me because it offers a very wide variety of repertoire. In addition, Lars Vogt is someone I admire enormously, as is the Orchestre de chambre de Paris. Working with them will undoubtedly be very rewarding. And, unlike the trio, it's not a full-time job. Even though this job will require a lot of commitment, it will give me the possibility to go and feed myself elsewhere. On the other hand, in a chamber orchestra, the violinist has a leadership position. Sometimes, he or she has to "play/lead": he or she occupies the role of the conductor but in a more intimate sphere. In the end, it's very similar to chamber music: it's very organic, there's total listening between the musicians. For this, my previous experiences, whether with the trio or the string quartet, will be very beneficial to me. 



Your experiences since May have enabled you to prepare your return to the orchestra...


I left the trio at the time when cultural venues started to open. At that time, there was a kind of effervescence. When I left, I was afraid I would be unemployed, but in reality I quickly returned to the life I had before. I played as concertmaster with the Orchestre des Pays de Savoie, in festivals and as a soloist with the Baden-Baden orchestra. It was a huge breath of fresh air after years of chamber music. It gave me a lot of freedom and allowed me to play in settings that corresponded to what is asked of us in competitions: I got used to the power of the orchestra again. Indeed, with the trio, we don't have a whole ensemble behind our ears. It's a more intimate form that doesn't require the same projection.  


https://lalettredumusicien.fr/article/-le-travail-de-lorchestre-de-chambre-est-organique-7213

BNN: Mendelssohn's violin concerto

The soloist of the evening, the young French violinist Clémence de Forceville, has mastered the whole range of different forms of expression required by Mendelssohn's violin concerto, she can bathe in brilliant sounds, she can show off her virtuosity in a lively and spirited manner, but she fascinates the audience even more when she softly breathes lyrical passages with precision. Her angelic, floating sounds were beautiful enough to melt away. In harsh contrast, the temperamental final movement was lively, sparkling and thrilling. The violinist thanked the enthusiastic applause with the Sarabande from the Sonata for Solo Violin in D minor by Johann Sebastian Bach, which, significantly, was again a highly sensitively played slow movement.


- BNN/ Karl-Heinz Fischer
Translated from german


"Auch die Solistin des Abends, die Junge Französische Geigerin Clémence de Forceville beherrscht zwar die ganze Bandbreiter unterschiedlicher Ausdrucksformen, wie sie das Violin Konzert von Mendelssohn erfordert, sie kann in fulminanten Klängen baden, kann quirlig und voller Temperament ihre Spieltechnische Virtuosität zur Geltung bringen, noch mehr aber fasziniert sie das Publikum, wenn sie lyrische Passagen leise und mit Präzision dahinhaucht. Ihre engelhardt schwebenden Klänge waren zum Dahinschmelzen schön. In hartem Kontrast dazu kam der Temperamentvolle Schlusssatz spritzig, prickelnd und mitreißend. Für den begeisterten Beifall bedankte sich die Geigerin mit der Sarabande aus der Sonate für Violine Solo D-moll von Johann Sebastian Bach, bezeichnenderweise auch wieder ein höchst sensibel gespielter langsamer Satz."


- BNN/ Karl-Heinz Fischer

Badisches Tagblatt: Mendelssohn's violin concerto

"The commitment of the young and promising French violinist Clémence de Forceville proves to be another asset of the evening: Felix Mendelssohn's Concerto in E minor, with its three movements that merge into each other, demands technique and tonal finish, but also expressiveness and variability of timbral colours. In addition to her talents as a soloist, the violinist has extensive experience as a chamber musician, which audibly benefits her vision of the E minor concerto. As radiant as her Lorenzo Storioni violin from 1777 may fill the hall, here the emphasis is not only on power. The elegance of her playing characterises the interpretation, and the unaffected precision even in the small values of the notes, the warmth of her tone that brings out the brilliance of the concerto, which Clémence de Forceville performs with great verve but always with a playful elegance, captures the essence of the composition. Here the philharmonic orchestra, with its beautifully sounding soloists, is invited by Förster to provide concentrated accompaniment with a sense of tempo variation. As an encore, the violinist plays a movement from a sonata for solo violin by Johann Sebastian Bach: concentrated in expression, interiorised, almost detached from the world.


- Thomas Weiss/ Badisches Tagblatt
Translated from german


"Die Verpflichtung der jungen, aufstrebenden französischen Geigerin Clémence de Forceville erweist sich als ein weiteres Pluspunkt des Abends: Felix Mendelssohn e-moll Konzert mit seinem drei ineinander übergehenden Sätzen erfordert Technik und klanglichen Feinschliff, aber auch Ausdruckskraft und Variabilität der Klangfarben. Die Geigerin verfügt neben ihrer solistischen Klasse über viel Erfahrung als Kammermusikerin, was ihrer Sicht auf das e-moll Konzert hörbar zugute kommt. So strahlend ihre Violine von Lorenzo Storioni von 1777 den Saal auch füllen mag, hier wird nicht nur auf Wucht gesetzt. Die Eleganz ihre Spiels prägt die Interpretation, die unaufgeregte Präzision auch in kleinen Notenwerten, die Wärme ihrer Tongebung, das Strahlende des Konzerts, das Forceville mit viel Elan aber stets spielerischer Eleganz verwirklicht, trifft das Wesen des Komposition. Wobei die Philharmonie mit ihren klang-schönen Hochbläser Solistinnen von Förster zur konzentrierten Begleitung mit Sinn für Tempo Variationen angehalten wird. Als Kontrast spielt die Geigerin einen zugegebenen Satz aus einer Solosonate von Johann Sebastian Bach, Konzentriert im Ausdruck, verinnerlicht, fast weltabgewandt"


- Thomas Weiss/ Badisches Tagblatt