With 60-plus recordings to his credit, Marc Grauwels is easily among his generation's most heavily recorded flutists. But more importantly, he has consistently drawn critical plaudits not only for these recordings but for his concert activity, as well, whether in larger works with orchestra or in the realm of chamber music. Grauwels typically carries a taxing schedule of concerts, with more than 100 dates per year. His repertory is unusually broad and multinational, embracing works by J.S. Bach, Mozart, Schubert, Sor, Rossini, Spohr, Saint-Saëns, Jongen, Fauré, Debussy, Ravel, and contemporaries Ravi Shankar, Astor Piazzolla, Michel Lysight, Yasuji Kiyose, Tei Yanada, and countless others. What is remarkable about Grauwels, however, are the instrumental combinations he often employs: while he uses traditional pairings, such as flute and piano or flute and harp, he also regularly performs works scored for flute/percussion, flute/viola/doublebass, flute/soprano/harp, flute/glassharmonica/string trio, and many others. Part of the reason for this diversity is that more than 100 works have been written for him, including Astor Piazzolla's History of the Tango (1985) and Ennio Morricone's Cantate for Europe (1988). Grauwels' recordings are available on a variety of labels, including Naxos, Marco Polo, Cypres, Helios, Pavane, and Brilliant Classics.
Marc Brauwels was born on April 1, 1954 in Ostend, Belgium. He studied at Karel de Grote Hogeschool in Antwerp. He would later study flute with Jean-Pierre Rampal and James Galway. At 19 he played with the Flemish Opera Orchestra. In 1976 he joined the orchestra of the Belgian National Opera (Theatre Monnaie) to play piccolo, and then two years later became principal flutist for the Belgian National Radio and Television Orchestra.
In 1986 he was appointed principal flutist for the World Philharmonic Orchestra under Carlo Maria Giulini, but left the post, as well as his Belgian National Radio post, in 1987. Thereafter Grauwels focused on his career as a soloist.
Grauwels first major recording project was a 1989 Mozart set of discs (now available on Brilliant Classics) that included quartets, sonatas, and the Adagio and Rondo, K. 617. Grauwels remained busy throughout the 1990s both in the concert hall and recording studio. He began recording for Naxos in 1992 with a collection entitled Romantic Music for Flute and Harp, issued on Naxos' sister label Marco Polo. Grauwels' has been busy in the new century on a large series for Naxos entitled The Flute Collection, projected to reach 30 discs.