La Classe d'Excellence de Violoncelle - Promotion VI

Every year since 2014, the Classe d'Excellence de Violoncelle de Gautier Capuçon takes place in the Auditorium of the Fondation. Created and directed by Gautier Capuçon, this project is designed to promote six young and talented cellists from around the world.

From November 2019 to June 2020, Gautier Capuçon and the laureates of the 6th promotion will meet for 6 sessions of workshop : two public work sessions and a concert. Throughout the year, follow the evolution of these music prodigies, guided by Capuçon's expert advices. 

The six laureates of the Promotion VI are : Gaeun Kim (South Korea), Jan Sekaci (Roumania), Ildikó Szabó (Hungary), Umut Sağlam (Turkey), Jeeln You (South Korea), Daniel Thorell (Sweden).

Season 2019/2020 will end with a closing concert, initaly planned on 20 June 2020, is rescheduled on 14 October at 8.30 p.m.

La promotion VI de la Classe d'Excellence de Violoncelle de Gautier Capuçon

© Fondation Louis Vuitton / Martin Raphaël Martiq

Le programme

November Session
15 and 16 november 2019
December Session
14 and 15 décember 2019
March Session
7 and 8 march 2020
October Session
14 and 15 october 2020

The Promotion VI


Ildikó SZABó was the winner of the 2nd Prize, the Audience Award, and 7 Special Prizes at the 2014 Pablo Casals International Cello Competition. She is also a top prize winner of the German Music Competition, TONALi, Popper International Competition, Janigro International Competition, and Liezen International Competition.

She has appeared as a soloist with the Budapest Festival Orchestra under Ivan Fischer, the Hungarian Radio Orchestra, Magdeburgische Philharmonie, and the Martinu Philharmonic Orchestra. She made her debut at Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern in June 2019 and the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival in 2018. The same summer, she appeared at the Mendelssohn Festival with Hamburger Symphoniker. In April 2017, Ildikó made her recital debut at the Berlin Konzerthaus, invited by her mentor Sir Alfred Brendel. Previous festival invitations have included the Verbier Festival, Piatigorsky Festival Los Angeles, Krzyzowa Music, Holland Music Sessions.

Her interest in working with living composers has led her to collaborate with Peter Eötvös and Gyorgy Kurtag. In January 2019 she was awarded the Special Prize for Best Interpretation of the Commissioned Work at the Mendelssohn Competition and premiered Christian Jest's Lautlos II at the Konzerthaus Berlin. In April 2019 with Concerto Budapest, she played the Budapest Premiere of the Rözsa Concerto nearly 50 years after it was composed.

Ildikó is a scholarship holder of the Study Foundation of the German Nation and currently plays an Antonio Sgarbi cello (Rome, 1894), generously loaned by the German Foundation of Musical Life. 


Umut SAğLAM started his cello studies in 2009 in Hacettepe University State Conservatory with Tufan Tahir Taiga. In 2014, he entered Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University State Conservatory with Dilbag Tokay. Then in 2016, he started studying at the Barenboim-Said Academy with Claudius Popp.

He is the winner of several awards, among which the second prize in the International Competition of German and Austrian Music "Magic" in 2015, the first prize of the 25th Young Musician International Competition "Citta di Barletta", the first prize in the "International Young Talents Competition" in 2017, the first prize in the Gaetano Zinetti Music Competition in Italy and the "Tremplin" International Cello Competition in France in 2018. He also performed with the pianist Eren Aydoğan at the "Rising Stars Concert Series" held by Is Sanat, and was awarded first prize and the "Meriç Soylu Special Award".

He made his first debut as a soloist at 15 under the baton of the Turkish conductor Gurer Aykal. Since then, he performed as a soloist with various orchestras such as Bakirkoy Chamber Orchestra, Ankara Youth Symphony Orchestra, Istanbul State Symphony Orchestra and the Presidential Symphony Orchestra of Turkey.

Umut also followed masterclasses and shared the stage with artists such as Daniel Barenboim, Jorg Widmann, Steven lsserlis, Gary Hoffman, Claudio Bohorquez, among others. In 2018 he was invited by Maestro Daniel Barenboim to be a part of the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra.

Since 2017, Umut is a scholar of the "Young Musicians on World Stages"(YMWS) project mentored by Guher & Suher Pekinel, supported by the Tüpra$ Company. He currently studies with Frans Helmerson at the Barenboim-Said Akademie and plays on a Nicolas Lupot cello made in 1810 in Paris, generously provided by the YMWS Project. 


Daniel THORELL is a cellist from Stockholm, Sweden. Though only 21-years old he has already had great success as a soloist and a chamber musician, both nationally and internationally. Praised for his mature and expressive music making he is currently regarded as one of Scandinavias most promising young cellists. He is a first prize winner in no less than seven International competitions, most notably Rovere D'oro (2017) where he was also awarded gold medal. In May of 2019, he was also a major prize winner in the 54th Markneukirchen International Cello Competition.

Born into a family of musicians, Daniel began playing the cello at the age of five. He made his debut as a soloist at the age of eleven, performing Saint-Saens A-minor Cello Concerto with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra. Since then he has performed regularly as a soloist with orchestras around Sweden including the Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra. The season 18/19 included performances playing Rococo-variations, Schumann Cello Concerto and Saint-Saens Cello Concerto, as well as chamber music in festivals in Germany and Scandinavia.


Daniel is currently studying his soloist diploma at the Norwegian Academy of Music with prof. Torleif Thedeen and is often attending masterclasses around the world with a number of renowned teachers including Jens-Peter Mainz, Danjulo lshizaka, Maria Kliegel, Claudio Bohorquez and Antonio Meneses. He is a recipient of numerous scholarships from foundations such as SWEA International Scholarship for the arts and the Royal Swedish Academy of Music.

Daniel is playing a L. Bisiach generously on loan from the Jarnaker Foundation. 

Jan Sekaci

Jan Sekaci was born on in February 2001. He started to play the cello at the age of 10 in his hometown Oradea at the High School of Arts Oradea. Since 2015, he studies with Octavian Lup at the National College of Arts "Dinu Upatti". He won many prizes at national and international competitions, among which the 3rd prize at the Antonio Janigro Cello Competition in Porec, Croatia.

He also won the 2nd prize at the Young Virtuosos International Competition in Sofia, Bulgaria, the 1st prize at Klaipeda International Competition, Lithuania, the 1st prize at the ProArt Competition in Khmelnitsky, Ukraine, the 4th prize at the Johannes Brahms competition. He participated at masterclasses held by Marin Cazacu, Octavian Lup, Mihai Marica, Denis Severin, Frans Helmerson, Judith Ermert, Jacob Shaw, Romain Garioud, Raphael Pidoux, Wolfgang Emanuel Schmidt.

In 2018, Jan was selected as an active participant at the Kronberg Academy Masterclasses, studying with Wolfgang Emanuel Schmidt.


Gaeun KIM started her cello studies at the age of four. At age 17, she has already played in many concerts in famous halls such as the Kumho Art Hall, Shinhan Art Hall, Kukje Art Hall, SECL Hall, among others.

Gaeun has also performed with many orchestras, among which Jagred Soloists, Suwon Philharmonic Orchestra, Incheon Philharmonic Orchestra, Seongnam Philharmonic Orchestra, and Bucheon Philharmonic Orchertra.

She also is the winner of several competitions, including the 2012 Antonio Janigro International Cello Competition, the 2013 Liezen International Cello Competition, and the 2015 David Popper International Cello Competition.

More recently, Gaeun took part in this year's XVI Tchaikovsky International Competition, where she was the youngest participant in the history of the event.

Jeein You

20 years old (South Korea)

Born in 2002 in South Korea, Jeein You began playing cello at the age of five. Between 2009- 2016 she studied with Myung-wha Chung at Korea National University of Arts Preschool and the Korea Institute for Gifted in Arts, at the age of 13, gained a place at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris in the class of Michel Strauss, obtaining her Bachelors and Masters degree. She has engaged in masterclasses with renowned cellists such as Arto Noras, Frans Helmerson, Philippe Muller, Tsuyoshi Tsutsumi, Gautier Capuçon, Song-young Hun, Clara Minhye Kim and many others.

Jeein was selected as a laureate for Gautier Capuçon’s Classe d'Excellence de Violoncelle at the Louis Vuitton Foundation during seasons 2019-2022, and in the 2022-23 season will also partake in the recently launched Fondation Gautier Capuçon.

This season, Jeein will perform in recital at the Seoul Arts Center in IBK Hall, as well as on tour throughout Europe (including Konzerthaus Vienna, Konzerthaus Dortmund, Fondation Louis Vuitton Paris, Salle Métropole Lausanne and Victoria Hall Geneva) with Gautier Capuçon and ensemble Capucelli. In 2021 the ensemble of seven cellists recorded works to be released on Gautier’s upcoming album ‘Sensations’. Later this season Jeein will also perform at Classeek’s concert hall in Switzerland, as part of their Ambassador Programme concert season for emerging young artists.

As well as gaining recognition on the concert stage throughout Europe, Jeein is also expanding her profile in Korea. Following her recital performance at the PyeongChang Music Festival in December 2021, Jeein was reinvited to perform at the closing concert of the festival in July 2022, this time with a chamber septet alongside artists such as Svetlin Roussev, Arah Shin, Alexandre Baty and Ralph Szigeti.

Championing many acclaimed competitions, Jeein has won several first and special prizes including the 5th International Dotzauer competition for Young Cellists in Dresden, Germany (First prize and special prize), 23rd International Cello Competition in Heran, Czech Republic (First prize and grand prize), 11th OSAKA International Music Competition (First prize) and 7th International Music Competition for Young People in Oldenburg, Germany (Second prize). Furthermore, she won both the first prize and special prize for the best performance of a masterly piece at the 10th International Competition for Young Musicians in Tallinn, Estonia, which was followed by a winners performance of Haydn’s Cello Concerto in C with the Tallinn Philharmonic Orchestra.

As a soloist, Jeein has performed concerti with the Philharmonia Korea Orchestra, Guro Arts Valley Orchestra, Gunpo Philharmonic Orchestra, Wonju Philharmonic Orchestra, Tallinn Philharmonic Orchestra, Kaunas Philharmonic Orchestra, amongst others. In recital, she has performed in many established concert series and venues including the 28th Kumho Prodigy Recital, Blue House (official residence of the President of the Republic of Korea) for the King and Queen of Malaysia, ISANGYUN Competition Young Cellists Invitation Concert, International Art Festival Invitation Chamber Music in Istana Budaya Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia), Great Mountains Music Festival, Seoul Spring Festival, Mozarthall Open Piano Forum Season, and Maison Heinrich Heine (Paris). 

Gautier Capuçon

Gautier Capuçon is a true 21st century ambassador for the cello. Performing internationally with many of the world’s foremost conductors and instrumentalists, he is also a passionate ambassador for the Orchestre à l'École Association which brings classical music to more than 40,000 school children across France. In January 2022 Gautier Capuçon launched his own Foundation to support young and talented musicians at the beginning of their career and increasing his commitment to young artists. A multiple award winner, he is acclaimed for his expressive musicianship, exuberant virtuosity, and for the deep sonority of his 1701 Matteo Goffriller cello “L’Ambassadeur”.

In summer 2020, mid-pandemic, Capuçon brought music directly into the lives of families across the length and breadth of France, free of charge, during his musical odyssey ‘Un été en France’. During July 2022, for the third edition of this project, he performs 15 concerts across the nation including Autun, Clairveaux, Eauz, and his hometown of Chambéry. He also showcases 14 young musicians and 8 young dancers within his concert presentations.


Committed to exploring and expanding the cello repertoire, Capuçon performs an extensive array of works each season and regularly premieres new commissions. Current projects include collaborations with Lera Auerbach, Danny Elfman and Thierry Escaich.


In the 2022/23 season, Capuçon appears with, amongst others, Boston Symphony Orchestra (Andris Nelsons), Chicago Symphony Orchestra (Manfred Honeck), San Francisco Symphony (Michael Tilson Thomas), Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks (Marie Jacquot), Gewandhausorchester Leipzig (Andris Nelsons), NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchester (Pablo Heras-Casado), Munich Philharmonic (Lorenzo Viotti), Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich (Christoph Eschenbach), Orchestre de Paris (Klaus Mäkelä), and Czech Philharmonic Orchestra (Semyon Bychkov). He is the Curating Artist at the Konzerthaus Dortmund, and in addition, Capuçon plays at Festivals worldwide, including the Salzburg, Grafenegg, and Verbier Festivals.


In recital, Capucon pairs regularly with Frank Braley and Jérôme Ducros – while other chamber music partners include Nikolai Lugansky and Gabriela Montero as well as Martha Argerich, Daniel Barenboim, Lisa Batiashvili, Renaud Capuçon, Leonidas Kavakos, Andreas Ottensamer, Jean-Yves Thibaudet, Daniil Trifonov, Yuja Wang, the Labèque sisters and the Artemis, Ébène and Hagen quartets.


Recording exclusively for Erato (Warner Classics), Capuçon has won multiple awards and holds an extensive discography. His latest album Sensations is due to be released in Autumn 2022, exploring short pieces from a range of different genres. His album of romantic works by Brahms and Rachmaninoff in collaboration with Andreas Ottensammer and Yuja Wang is also released in Autumn 2022 by Deutsche Grammophon. 2020’s Warner Classics album Emotions features music from composers such as Debussy, Schubert and Elgar and has achieved gold status in France, remaining at Number 1 in the charts for over 30 weeks and selling more than 110,000 copies. Earlier recordings include concertos by Shostakovich (Mariinsky Orchestra with Valery Gergiev) and Saint-Saëns (Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France with Lionel Bringuier); the complete Beethoven Sonatas with Frank Braley; Schubert’s String Quintet with the Ébène Quartet; Intuition with Orchestre de Chambre de Paris/ (Douglas Boyd and Jérôme Ducros); an album of Schumann works, recorded live with Martha Argerich, Renaud Capuçon and Chamber Orchestra of Europe/ (Bernard Haitink); Beethoven Piano Trios with Renaud Capuçon and Frank Braley; Chopin and Franck sonatas with Yuja Wang; and a solo album featuring Bach, Dutilleux and Kodaly as well as a “Best of” recording on occasion of his 40th birthday.


Capuçon has been featured on DVD in live performances with the Wiener Philharmoniker (Saint-Saens Cello Concerto No.1) Berliner Philharmoniker (Haydn Cello Concerto No.1) and with Lisa Batiashvili, Sächsische Staatskapelle Dresden and Christian Thielemann (Brahms’s Concerto for Violin and Cello). A household name in his native France, he also appears on screen and online in shows such as ProdigesNow Hear This, and The Artist Academy, and is a guest presenter on Radio Classique in the show Les Carnets de Gautier Capuçon. 


Born in Chambéry, Capuçon began playing the cello at the age of five. He studied at the Conservatoire National Supérieur in Paris with Philippe Muller and Annie Cochet-Zakine, and later with Heinrich Schiff in Vienna. Now, he performs with world leading orchestras, works with conductors such as Semyon Bychkov, Christoph Eschenbach, Andrès Orozco-Estrada, Pablo Heras-Casado, Klaus Mäkelä, Andris Nelsons, and Christian Thielemann, and collaborates with contemporary composers including Lera Auerbach, Karol Beffa, Esteban Benzecry, Nicola Campogrande, Qigang Chen, Bryce Dessner, Jérôme Ducros, Henry Dutilleux, Thierry Escaich, Philippe Manoury, Bruno Mantovani, Krzysztof Penderecki, Wolfgang Rihm, and Jörg Widmann. 

Samuel Parent

Samuel Parent est né en 1982 dans le Vaucluse.

Après avoir étudié avec Michel Bourdoncle à Aix-en-Provence, puis Olivier Gardon à Paris, il est admis en 2000 dans la classe de Brigitte Engerer au Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris, dont il sort quatre ans plus tard avec un diplôme de Formation Supérieure, mention très bien.

En 2008, il remporte le deuxième prix au concours international Rina Sala Gallo de Monza, Italie. Cette même année, il intègre la classe de musique de chambre du quatuor Artemis à la Chapelle Musicale Reine Elisabeth de Belgique.


Pendant une quinzaine d'années, Samuel Parent a été le pianiste du Trio con Fuoco, ensemble récompensé dans plusieurs concours internationaux (Illzach, Florence, Heerlen...) et au sein duquel il s'est produit dans de nombreux festivals (Aix-en-Provence, la Roque d'Anthéron, Flâneries musicales de Reims) et sur la scène mondiale : concerts à  l'Auditorium du Louvre, au Bozar de Bruxelles, à l'Auditorium de Dijon, au Maroc, en Espagne, aux Pays-Bas, en Inde, en Amérique Centrale...


Chambriste recherché, Samuel Parent se produit avec de nombreux artistes tels que Gautier Capuçon, le quatuor Ebène, Hugues Borsarello, le quatuor Van Kuijk,  Henri Demarquette, Olivier Patey, Erik Berchot, Ami Flammer, Frédéric Aguessy, Emmanuel Christien, Mathilde Borsarello-Herrmann, Karen Vourc'h, Mari Eriksmoen... Il a ainsi été invité dans des cadres prestigieux comme le Palais de la Musique à Valencia, les Sommets Musicaux de Gstaad ou la saison musicale de Schloss Elmau. En France, Samuel Parent a joué notamment au festival Pianoscope à Beauvais, au Festival de Colmar, au Festival de Chambord, Musique en Côte Basque, au Printemps de la Grange au Lac, à la salle Gaveau, au théâtre du Châtelet à Paris.


Samuel Parent se distingue également pour ses talents d'accompagnateur : depuis janvier 2014, il est le pianiste de Yanowski qu'il accompagne dans son tour de chant « la Passe Interdite ». Il est régulièrement invité dans diverses académies estivales pour apporter son soutien à de nombreux étudiants. Depuis 2015, il est le pianiste accompagnateur de la classe d'Excellence de Violoncelle de Gautier Capuçon à la Fondation Louis Vuitton à Paris. En 2019, Samuel Parent est l'un des accompagnateurs officiels du Concours Musical Reine Elisabeth à Bruxelles.


Samuel Parent se distingue également pour ses talents d'accompagnateur : depuis janvier 2014, il est le pianiste de Yanowski qu'il accompagne dans son tour de chant « la Passe Interdite ». Il est régulièrement invité dans diverses académies estivales pour apporter son soutien à de nombreux étudiants. Depuis 2015, il est le pianiste accompagnateur de la classe d'Excellence de Violoncelle de Gautier Capuçon à la Fondation Louis Vuitton à Paris. En 2019, Samuel Parent est l'un des accompagnateurs officiels du Concours Musical Reine Elisabeth à Bruxelles.Samuel Parent se distingue également pour ses talents d'accompagnateur : depuis janvier 2014, il est le pianiste de Yanowski qu'il accompagne dans son tour de chant « la Passe Interdite ». Il est régulièrement invité dans diverses académies estivales pour apporter son soutien à de nombreux étudiants. Depuis 2015, il est le pianiste accompagnateur de la classe d'Excellence de Violoncelle de Gautier Capuçon à la Fondation Louis Vuitton à Paris. En 2019, Samuel Parent est l'un des accompagnateurs officiels du Concours Musical Reine Elisabeth à Bruxelles.