British-Hispanic pianist, Helen Glaisher-Hernández, is part of a new generation of Latinx practitioners elucidating the cultural diversity of classical music.
Following degrees in Spanish and French at the University of Cambridge (Corpus Christi College), including a year abroad studying Piano at the Conservatorio Nacional Superior in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and an MMus in Piano at Trinity College of Music in London, Helen Glaisher-Hernández now combines her two great loves - music and hispanicity - as a concert pianist, event producer, educator and Ibe/rican specialist committed to the decolonisation of music programming and performance.
Helen's playing is noted as much for its passion as for its sensitivity and cultural authenticity, and has been praised by critics as 'magical' (BBC Radio 3's In Tune), 'so beautiful' (BBC Radio 4's Woman's Hour); 'a compelling mestizaje of classical refinement and Latin feel', and 'satisfyingly understated' (Music & Vision). She was characterised by Telecinco as 'a magnificent musician'.
Daughter of a Rotherham greengrocer and a Canarian school teacher, Helen enjoyed a cosmopolitan upbringing which allowed her to appreciate the music of different cultures and traditions from an early age. Today she remains an adventurous explorer of remote musical territories, unafraid to challenge convention and cross borders in seeking out new rarely-heard repertoire. She has premiered many works by Latin American composers in the UK, including pieces by Villa-Lobos, Estévez, Alvarez Ríos, Perisic, Souviron, Cimaglia, Vitier, Sojo, Carreño, Guastavino and Camargo Guarnieri, and often blurs the boundaries between 'classical' and 'popular' music in her own unique arrangements. She has also commissioned new works by pre-eminent Latin American composers such as Ricardo Lorenz and Enrique González Medina.
With a special passion for chamber music and vocal accompaniment, Helen has collaborated with many leading artists in her field, including Dominic Miller (Sting), Lizzie Ball, Luis Gomes, Ian Anderson, Vanessa Lucas-Smith, Omar Puente, Coro Cervantes, Bárbara Llanes, Clara Rodríguez, José Menor and Nina Corti, and she has also shared a platform with Morgan Szymanski, Fábio Zanon and Marcelo Bratke.
Helen has performed internationally, as well as live on BBC Radio 3 and BBC Radio 4, and across London's major venues, including sell-out appearances at Southbank Centre's Purcell Room at Queen Elizabeth Hall, Barbican's Milton Court Concert Hall, St John's Smith Square, St Martin-in-the-Fields, St James's Piccadilly, Bolívar Hall, Fairfield Halls, The National Gallery and La Linea Festival.
Helen also works as Artistic Director of ILAMS and Echoes Festival in the promotion of Iberican classical music in the UK and in this role she has curated events at Trinity College of Music, Canning House, Instituto Cervantes, The In & Out Club, Southbank Centre's Purcell Room at Queen Elizabeth Hall, the Wallace Collection and The National Gallery, amongst others
Helen's ongoing 'TangOpera' project explores the lyric routes of the tango, featuring the voices of leading Argentine opera singers, Leonardo Pastore, Jaquelina Livieri and Florencia Machado. Their debut album is due for release in 2023. Her latest collaboration, with Spanish soprano, Lorena Paz Nieto, brings to light the secret works of Latina women composers in a new programme titled Mujeres ¡Presentes!
Helen has recently been invited to co-curate a special 2023 Latin American edition of the Leeds Opera Festival, and she is also currently working on an educational programme of Luso-Hispanic music for young pianists.
She is proud to be on the teaching staff at the Sheffield Music Academy, in addition to her own private piano teaching practice.