Abendmusiken – Festival frauenkomponiert 2021
The Basel Abendmusiken are modelled on the Abend-Musicken initiated in Lübeck by Franz Tunder and Dieterich Buxtehude, in which sacred music was presented concertante to a city audience. In many other places too, cantors, Kapellmeisters and organists were given the artistic freedom to explore new types of composition, unusual instrumentation, and special spatial effects. Despite the confessional conflicts, Germany and also Italy – which set the standards for European music – experienced an astonishing musical flowering in the 17th century.
The Abendmusiken project presents 17th-century composers in monthly portraits, shedding light on their musical environment, the influence of teachers, pupils, colleagues, and cantors, as well as their music. The Basler Abendmusiken performed works by a woman composer in March 2021 for the first time at the request of the Festival frauenkomponiert 2021.
Absolut Trio – Festival frauenkomponiert 2021
In 2003, three accomplished and enthusiastic chamber musicians came together to form the Absolut Trio. The ensemble has been playing in its current formation with Bettina Boller (violin), Judith Gerster (violoncello) and Stefka Perifanova (piano) since 2009.
The artistic exploration of their own time is important to all three musicians and they regularly commission new works. Nineteen substantial works for piano trio (some with live electronics) have been created for them and integrated into richly-woven programmatic concepts, in addition to trouvailles and rarities that need to be brought to light. The trio has performed at venues such as the Art Center in Seoul, Wigmore Hall in London, Munich’s Gasteig, the Tonhalle in Zurich, WDR Cologne, and the ppIANISSIMO Festival in Sofia. The Absolut Trio’s first CD with works by A. Schönberg, R. Kelterborn and B.A. Zimmermann, released in 2007 with the cellist Imke Frank on the Guild label, was highly praised by the critics and received a Supersonic Award. Further CDs have been released on, for example, the Musique Suisse and Solo Musica labels. At the end of 2018, their latest CD with the complete piano trio oeuvre of Urs Peter Schneider was released to high acclaim.
In 2018, the Absolut Trio was awarded the annual prize of the city of Zurich for their work to date.
Marco Amherd – Festival frauenkomponiert 2021
Marco Amherd studied conducting, organ/church music (concert, teaching, and solo diploma), and economics in Zurich, Freiburg im Breisgau, and Toulouse. He was awarded a distinction for all of his studies.
Since the autumn of 2019, Marco has been artistic director of the DAVOS FESTIVAL. In 2018, he took up a teaching position for choral conducting at the Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK). Since August 2015 he has also been a lecturer at the Musikschule Konservatorium Zürich (MKZ). In addition to his busy concert schedule as an organist, Marco Amherd conducts several professional and semi-professional ensembles. He is artistic director of the Swiss Vocal Consort, which combines early music with contemporary sounds and focuses on Swiss choral music.
Orchestra: L’anima giusta – frauenkomponiert 2015, 2016, Festival frauenkomponiert 2018: Orchester, Festival frauenkomponiert 2021
In the orchestra l’anima giusta, musicians from Basel’s leading orchestras and freelance players from in and around the city come together to form a new whole. The orchestra puts collaboration above competition – performing in the “true spirit” (l’anima giusta) of music – and performs works by women composers past and present, who are now neglected and/or unknown.
ARIA Quartet – Festival frauenkomponiert 2018
The four musicians of the ARIA Quartet (Basel) – Barbara Doll, Adelina Oprean, Winfried Rademacher and Conradin Brotbek – seek to deepen their experience as soloists, chamber musicians, and teachers in the demanding context of quartet playing and to express the true spirit of the works they play. The quartet stands for delicate transparency, warm and vivacious colours, and for a flexible and authentic sound.
Basel Sinfonietta – Festival frauenkomponiert 2021
The Basel Sinfonietta is a full symphony orchestra specializing in contemporary music – and is thus a unique ensemble worldwide. Its principal conductor is Baldur Brönnimann.
Driven by its commitment to performing cutting-edge music through commissioned works, world premieres, and Swiss premieres, the Basel Sinfonietta has been transcending classical concert conventions since its foundation in 1980 and embraces an exploratory approach to other genres and cultures in its programming.
In addition to its own series of six subscription concerts, the Basel Sinfonietta is a regular guest at local festivals such as ZeitRäume Basel and Culturescapes. The Sinfonietta is also one of the cooperation partners of the Theater Basel, the Kaserne Basel, and the Kunstmuseum Basel.
The Basel Sinfonietta’s growing international profile has been attested in recent seasons by appearances at the Vienna Konzerthaus, the International Summer Courses for New Music, the Dialoge Festival of the Salzburg Mozarteum Foundation, and at Warsaw Autumn. Recordings of Basel Sinfonietta concerts are regularly broadcast by Swiss radio SRF 2 Kultur as well as by international radio stations.
BBC Concert Orchestra – Festival frauenkomponiert 2021
The mission of the BBC Concert Orchestra is to bring inspiring musical experiences to everyone, everywhere, with the ensemble’s versatility as the key.
The orchestra can be heard on BBC Radio 2’s Sunday Night Is Music Night and for BBC Radio 3 it explores a wide selection of music, ranging from classical to contemporary. The orchestra has performed on many soundtracks, including Blue Planet and Serengeti for BBC One and for George the Poet’s award-winning podcast on BBC Sounds. In February 2021 it performed for the BBC One and BBC Radio 2 national celebration of musical theatre, Musicals: The Greatest Show.
The orchestra appears annually at the BBC Proms and it is an Associate Orchestra at the Southbank Centre, where highlights in 2021/22 include a performance under Principal Conductor Bramwell Tovey with trumpeter Yazz Ahmed as part of the EFG London Jazz Festival, two live versions of the BBC Radio 3 programme Unclassified with presenter Elizabeth Alker, and the world premiere of Composer in Residence Dobrinka Tabakova’s Concerto for Orchestra.
Along with its regular engagements throughout the UK, the orchestra tours internationally. The BBC Concert Orchestra, alongside the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, BBC Singers and BBC Proms offer enjoyable and innovative education and community activities and take a leading role in the BBC Ten Pieces programme. It is a key partner in the BBC Young Composer competition and the newly launched BBC Open Music programme.
Els Biesemans – Festival frauenkomponiert 2018
Els Biesemans was born in Antwerp in 1978, and studied piano, organ, and chamber music at the Belgian Conservatory in Leuven. In 2001 she was awarded a Master of Music with Honours. In 2005 Andrea Marcon invited her to continue her studies at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis, where she specialised in 18th- and 19th-century keyboard music under Jesper Christensen.
Els has won numerous international competitions in Bruges, Paris, Prague, Tokyo, and Montreal, winning the Ciurlionis Competition in Vilnius and the ‘Arp Schnitger’ competition in Bremen. She has performed as a solo artist all over Europe, in the U.S., Canada, and Japan and has appeared in concert halls such as the Philharmonie Berlin, the Philharmonie Essen, the Tonhalle Zürich, the Salle Philharmonique Liège, the BOZAR in Brussel and AMUZ in Antwerp, Philharmonie Ekaterinburg and Omsk, Maison de la Radio France in Paris and in the Palacio Euskalduna in Bilbao.
David Blunden – Festival frauenkomponiert 2018
Born in Sydney, David Blunden began his musical training with piano and organ studies. He won a scholarship to study the organ with David Rumsey at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music where he completed a Bachelor of Music degree with first class honours in 1997. A keen interest in 17th- and 18th-century music led David to post-graduate studies at the Schola Cantorum in Basel, where he studied organ with Jean-Claude Zehnder, harpsichord with Andrea Marcon, and improvisation with Rudolf Lutz. He completed his post-graduate performance diploma with a high distinction in 2002 and was a prize winner at the prestigious Innsbruck International Organ Competition in September 2001.
David has established a lively international career as a soloist, ensemble musician, and accompanist, appearing in major festivals, theatres and churches throughout Europe. He performs regularly as a recital accompanist for singers on the harpsichord, piano, and organ, and has recorded extensively for CD and radio productions.
Maya Boog – frauenkomponiert 2015, Festival frauenkomponiert 2018, Festival frauenkomponiert 2021
“Maya Boog’s stunning Marguerite is a revelation: enchanting timbre, a luminous and powerful high register, graceful physique, intense acting … not to mention an intensity of emotion in the last scenes which is spine-tingling.”
Opera Magazine, Richard Martet, for Faust
For Maya Boog, the seasons of 2008–13 were characterised by a great diversity of role debuts:
in “La Boheme im Hochhaus”, a live European television production produced by Swiss television and ARTE, she personified Mimi; at the Festival de Radio France she sang the title role in Louise Bertin’s opera “La Esmeralda”, followed by debuts as Angelica in Vivaldi’s “Orlando furioso”, Susanna in “The Marriage of Figaro”, with guest appearance in Tokyo and Kyoto, the title role in Cavalli’s “La Calisto”, Ginevra in Handel’s “Ariodante” and the title role in Massenet’s “Manon” at the opera in Basel. Maya was Asteria in Gluck’s “Telemaco” at the Schwetzinger Festspiele and the “Merry Widow” at the Opéra National de Lorraine. Moreover, she was invited to perform two of her signature roles, Gilda in Verdi’s “Rigoletto” and Marguerite in Gounod’s “Faust”, at the Opéra National de Montpellier, for which she was highly praised by Opera Magazine.
The soprano’s studies in Lucerne and Cologne with Klesie Kelly and a subsequent year as a member of the Zurich Opera Studio were followed by an engagement at the theatre in Darmstadt. From 2001 to 2009, Maya was a fixed member of the Basel opera, where she received recognition as ‘audience darling’ for her impressive interpretations of the roles of Ilia, Pamina, Melisande, Violetta, Gilda, Fiordiligi, Donna Anna, Susanna, Mimi, and Marguerite, amongst others.
Trained as church musician (Kirchenmusikerin), Maya is a specialist in historically-informed performance. She works regularly with prominent early-music ensembles including the Freiburger Barockorchester, la Stagione Frankfurt, the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, La Cetra and Ensemble Matheus. Numerous CD’s and live radio recordings document her broad musical spectrum.
Simon Bucher – Festival frauenkomponiert 2018
If a highly expressive magician of characterisation (him about her) meets a highly sensual magician of sound (her about him), the sum of the whole is more than its parts. This duo ignites a fire of the purest joy of making music and deeply felt emotionality.
SHE wants the audience to experience the essence of womanhood in music.
HE wants to explore the nature of woman through music as a man, as the feeling and thinking of the composer is always transmitted to the interpreter.
BOTH love to discover that which is beyond the well-trodden path and the challenge of making the unknown into something that is quintessentially their own.
Olivier Darbellay – frauenkomponiert 2016, Solo Horn
Olivier Darbellay was born in Bern and grew up in a musical family. He studied the cello at the Bern Conservatory with Patrick Demenga and Peter Hörr as well as the horn with Thomas Müller in Bern and Basel. He completed his horn studies with Bruno Schneider in Freiburg i.Br., graduating “with distinction”. Since being awarded first prize at the “Tribune des Jeunes interprètes” in 2000 in Lisbon, as well as being named “Soloist of the year 2000” at the Union of French Radios’ Competition, he performs as a soloist and chamber musician in the most prestigious halls and festivals across Europe, North America and Asia.
Olivier specialises in both historical repertoire performed on period instruments and contemporary repertoire, where he works closely with composers such as Holliger, Pauset, Gervasoni, Gubler and Darbellay and regularly presents world premieres. In addition to performing and his positions as principal horn of the Berne Symphony Orchestra and the Basel Chamber Orchestra, Olivier is a dedicated teacher, holding masterclasses and workshops across the world, as well as professorships at the academies of Lucerne and Lausanne.
Alma Deutscher – Composer & Solo Violinist, Festival frauenkomponiert 2018
The British composer, pianist and violinist Alma Deutscher (*2005) started playing the piano when she was two years old and the violin when she was three. Soon afterwards she started improvising simple melodies on the piano. Her attempts at composition started aged four, when she began writing an opera about a pirate called Don Alonzo. She started studying partimento (an instructional bass line with either figured or unfigured bass) and improvisation with Tobias Cramm (Basel) in 2010.
When she was six, Alma composed her first full piano sonata, and at seven she wrote a very short opera called The Sweeper of Dreams. Aged nine, Alma composed a concerto for violin and orchestra, which she premiered in 2015. Her first piece for symphony orchestra, Dance of the Solent Mermaids, was also premiered in 2015.
Aged ten, Alma finished a full-length opera, Cinderella. A chamber version of the opera was performed in Israel in 2015 and the full version was premiered in Vienna under the patronage of Zubin Mehta in December 2016, to standing ovations, sold out performances, and international critical acclaim. In July 2017, Alma premiered her first piano concerto.
Alma’s talent as a musician has been acknowledged by figures such as Sir Simon Rattle and violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter. Since 2015 she has been mentored by Martin Campbell-White, the man who discovered and promoted Sir Simon. Alma has featured prominently in the international press and broadcast media. Her YouTube channel has more than 4.5 million views.
Barbara Doll – frauenkomponiert 2015: Solo Violin, Festival frauenkomponiert 2018 with the ARIA Quartett
Barbara Doll performs in the international music scene both as a soloist and as a chamber musician. She was appointed professor of violin at the Music Academy in Basel, Switzerland, in 2014, having held the equivalent position at the University of the Arts in Bern since 2004.
Barbara has given concerts at venues such as the Wigmore Hall and the Barbican in London, the Philharmonie in Berlin, the Gasteig in Munich and the Auditorio Nacional in Madrid, and performed as a soloist with the English Chamber Orchestra and the European Union Chamber Orchestra. A passionate chamber musician both as violinist and violist, she is a regular guest at Chamber Music festivals such as the Schleswig Holstein Festival, Steven Isserlis’ Chamber Music Festival, Prussia Cove or the Ravinia Festival, USA, partnering artists such as Miriam Fried, Homero Francesch, Heinz Holliger, Patricia Pagny, Silke Avenhaus, Adrian Oetiker, Filippo Gamba, Christopher Hinterhuber, Nicolas Altstaedt, Natalie Clein, Dieter Flury, and Dimitri Ashkenazy.
For nearly two decades, Barbara has formed a duo with the pianist Cristina Marton-Argerich. Their interpretations of both mainstream and rarely performed repertoire have attracted international critical acclaim for their personal and authentic approach. Barbara joined the ARIA String Quartet in 2014.
Susanne Doll – Festival frauenkomponiert 2018
Susanne Doll was born in Munich in 1956 and studied organ, harpsichord, piano, choral conducting, orchestral conducting, and composition at the Academy of Music there. She is the harpsichordist in various chamber orchestras, an organ teacher, and a church musician. Susanne has been titular organist at the Leonhardskirche and the Pauluskirche in Basel since 1991. Key areas of her work include working with amateurs, composing for organ and choir, and her involvement with the organ works of Bach, Dupré and Messiaen. She has arranged works of various styles for the organ: from Bach and Debussy to Pink Floyd, Santana, Piazzolla, Gershwin, Dvorak, Grieg and Brubeck.
Mariana Doughty – Festival frauenkomponiert 2018, Solo Viola
Mariana Doughty was born in Cornwall, played violin early and since the age of twelve viola. She received her education at Manchester’s Chethams School of Music and earned a Master of Arts degree from Jesus College Cambridge. She is now at home in Basel and enjoys the variety between contemporary and old music, as well as between orchestral and chamber music. With the “Streiff Trio”, the “3Gquartett” and the “Ensemble van der Waals” she appeared at most important festivals. Mariana is principal violist of the Basel Chamber Orchestra, teaches at the Music Academy Basel and swims every day in the Rhine. Their recordings are available from en avant, MGB and streiffzug.com.
Tomas Dratva – Festival frauenkomponiert 2018
Swiss pianist Tomas Dratva studied piano in Basel, Lucerne and London and gave his Début with the Tonhalle Orchester Zürich during his studies in 1992. He performs regularly as a soloist and chamber musician in many countries around the world. Tomas has performed in concert series and festivals in Lisbon, Buenos Aires, Dallas, San Francisco, London, Paris, Berlin, Bonn, Basel, Lugano, New York City, Washington DC, Prague, Bratislava, Budapest, Weimar, Bayreuth, Stockholm, Minsk, Krakow and given solo concerts with numerous orchestras: Sinfonieorchester Luzern, Tonhalle Orchester Zürich, Argovia Philharmonic, Kammerorchester Basel, Slovak Philharmonic Orchestra Košice, Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra Bratislava, Praga Sinfonietta, Russian State Philharmonic Orchestra Tomsk, Slovak Sinfonietta et al.
Tomas has a broad repertoire. The most important factors in his artistic activity are the search for new discoveries and re-discoveries, the study of contemporary music, and an in-depth exploration of historical pianos.
Tomas has been recording regularly for the past 20 years. He founded the music label PIANOVERSAL – the world’s first purely digital music label for classical and contemporary piano music – in 2017.
Duo Diptychon: experimental JAZZ CLASSICAL CONTEMPORARY sounds
Nathalie Laesser Zweifel & Esther Flückiger – Festival frauenkomponiert 2018
A duo, which explores the connections and frictions between stylistic regions, creates new rules and freedoms, and turns its back on the fences between genres. Duo Diptychon – it’s easier to take off with two wings.
The concentration on music composed by women is not based on ideological models, but simply serves to give due recognition to an important aspect of music history. (Nathalie Laesser Zweifel & Esther Flückiger)
Ludovic van Hellemont – Festival frauenkomponiert 2018
Ludovic Van Hellemont was born in Belgium and started to play the piano at the age of six. He studied at the Royal Conservatory in Brussels with Jan Michiels and at the Hochschule für Musik Basel with Claudio Martinez Mehner. A cornerstone of his musical development was his discovery of performance practice on historical instruments, leading him to the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis, where he studied fortepiano with Edoardo Torbianelli. At the same time, he started to improvise and compose. Ludovic has participated in masterclasses with renowned artists such as Andras Schiff, Ferenc Rados, Menahem Pressler, Alexei Lubimov, Andreas Staier, and Kristian Bezuidenhout.
Ludovic is committed to contemporary music. During his studies, his performances of Ligetis Etudes and Piano Concerto as well as the complete ‘Sonatas and Interludes for prepared piano’ by John Cage were highly acclaimed. He is a co-founder of the Odysseia Ensemble and a member of both the Ensemble Phoenix Basel and the Basel Sinfonietta.
Parallel to this, Ludovic is dedicated to performing music on historical instruments. In 2011, he inaugurated a restored fortepiano from Schubert’s time in the presence of the Swiss Parliament. A keen exponent of the music of Chopin, he played several concerts on a Pleyel in the Church of St. Clothilde in Paris, the castle of Vaux le Vicomte and the abbey of Royaumont. In 2016 he took on the post of Artistic Director of a concert series performed on a Brosy Tafelklavier (1799) in the municipal Museum of Schopfheim (D).
As a soloist, chamber musician, and accompanist for singers, he has played concerts in many European countries and in Australia. Occasionally, he programmes his own compositions. His chamber music partners include Tatiana Touliankina (piano), Jiri Nemecek (violin), and Walter Feldmann (flute).
Jessica Ulusoy-Horsley – Conductor & Artistic Director frauenkomponiert 2015, 2016, Festival frauenkomponiert 2018, Festival frauenkomponiert 2021 (Absolut Trio)
“Jessica Ulusoy-Horsley conducts with assurance and poise. Thanks to the clarity of her baton technique and her natural sense of stylistic purity, she conveys even the smallest nuances of the music with consummate ease” (Jiří Nĕmeček, Lead Violinist). Her highly acclaimed conducting debut took place in Basel’s main concert hall in March 2015 with a pioneering programme of orchestral music by women composers (frauenkomponiert.ch). For its third season in 2018, frauenkomponiert presented an entire festival of music by women composers, featuring the world premiere of Agnes Tyrrell’s overture from the oratorio “Die Könige in Israel” (c. 1880), the premiere of a commissioned work by Swiss composer Heidi Baader-Nobs and a performance of her own violin concerto by British child prodigy Alma Deutscher. The Festival’s fifth season in 2021 included Jessica’s debut with the BBC Concert Orchestra in London in a live broadcast for BBC Radio 3. The broadcast, featuring works by Ruth Gipps, Cécile Marti and Peggy Glanville-Hicks, received a glowing review in The Times. This Festival season also saw Jessica’s debut with the Basel Sinfonietta with three concerts/livestreams including a radio broadcast for the Swiss network SRF2 Kultur and the premiere recording of Dorothy Howell’s ballet Koong Shee (1921).
Kirsten Johnson – Festival frauenkomponiert 2018
Kirsten Johnson is a piano explorer – she has made her name recording undiscovered corners of the classical piano repertoire. She has made world premiere recordings of Albanian music and recorded the complete works of Arthur Foote (Delos) and Amy Beach (Guild).
I researched Amy Beach’s complete piano music over six years and recorded the whole. This involved digging up manuscripts from libraries across the United States. Amy Beach was a fantastic composer of instrumental, vocal and orchestral music, but she remains largely unknown outside the US. Her music deserves to be heard more often. (Kirsten Johnson)
Simone Keller – Festival frauenkomponiert 2021
Swiss pianist Simone Keller trained in the concert class of Hans-Jürg Strub and the Lied class of Daniel Fueter at the Zurich University of the Arts. She was awarded, among others, 1st prize at the Landolt Competition, 2nd prize at the Hans Ninck Competition, and the EMCY Chamber Music Prize at the European Classical Music Festival Ruhr. As a soloist and chamber musician she cultivates a very broad repertoire ranging from classical and modern music to experimental and interdisciplinary formats, her own concepts, and mediation projects, and performs extensively in Switzerland and throughout Europe, the USA, and Asia. Simone Keller has played regularly as a guest with the Musikkollegium Winterthur, the Südwestdeutsche Philharmonie and Collegium Novum Zürich as well as the Ensemble Contrechamps Geneva, the Glassfarm Ensemble New York, and the Hong Kong New Music Ensemble. She has worked with conductors such as Peter Rundel, Jac van Steen, Jonathan Stockhammer, Pablo Heras-Casado, Peter Ruzicka, Peter Hirsch, Heinz Holliger, and Johannes Kalitzke.
Mädchenkantorei Basel – Festival frauenkomponiert 2021
The Mädchenkantorei Basel has been the choir school and concert choir for young female singers in the north-west of Switzerland since 1991. In six choir classes, girls from the age of four and young women are encouraged in an age-appropriate and targeted way. The goals are to cultivate the joy of singing, to work on demanding choral literature, to teach in-depth musical knowledge, and to promote talent and expressiveness on the basis of careful vocal training. Under the direction of Marina Niedel, the six choirs of the Mädchenkantorei Basel give concerts, take part in co-productions, and are regularly involved in opera productions at the Theater Basel.
Mes(h)k Ensemble – Festival frauenkomponiert 2021
A life of learning and serving
“Mes(h)k” comes from Ottoman and means “to learn” or … “to repeat”.
Traditionally in musical training, something is first learned and then reinforced through repetition until that which has been learned has been integrated and something new can be tackled. We call the passing on and further development of this tradition “SERVING”. Thus, in our ensemble we try not only to play very beautiful music, but also to serve these masters/mistresses by constantly rediscovering long-lost compositions and composers.
The Mes(h)k Ensemble came into being through workshops led by Muhittin Kemal. The term “Ottoman music” refers to a geographical area that stretches from the Balkans to the Indian border. Accordingly, the Mes(h)k Ensemble is dynamic and international, with musicians from Turkey, Greece, and Germany.
MUSICA FIORITA – Festival frauenkomponiert 2018
The polyglot Swiss ensemble MUSICA FIORITA (dir. Daniela Dolci) is devoted to research into and performance of largely unknown music of the baroque period. In order to transmit this cultural heritage to today’s audiences, the ensemble constantly develops new creative projects, often in dialogue with other cultures or artistic disciplines such as dance, literature and fashion design.
“frauenkomponiert” is a brilliant new project that we want to support with our long experience in the field of female baroque composers. Our goal is to establish their works in the concert repertoire. (MUSICA FIORITA)
Carmit Natan – Festival frauenkomponiert 2021
The Israeli soprano, Carmit Natan, began singing at a very young age in the professional Ankor Children’s Choir, with which she appeared as a soloist in Israel and abroad. She completed a BA in Music at the Jerusalem Music Academy with Professor Efrat Ben-Nun, and a Masters in performance at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis, specializing in early music repertoire in the class of Professor Gerd Türk.
Carmit has performed as a soloist with orchestras conducted by Jordi Savall, Rinaldo Alessandrini, Andrew Parrott, Nicolas Krüger, Yaron Gottfried, Stanley Sperber, David Shemer, and Yuval Ben Ozer. She is a member of ensembles such as “La Capella Reial de Catalunya”, “Choeur de Chambre de Namur”, “La Cetra Vokalensemble”, and “Novantik Basel”.
Jiří Nĕmeček – frauenkomponiert 2015, 2016, Festival frauenkomponiert 2018: Lead Violinist, L’anima giusta
Jiří Nĕmeček (*1976) was born in the Czech Republic. He completed his studies in violin at the Brno Conservatory and the Prague Academy of Music. Further training focusing on chamber music took him to Madrid and Basel. Intensive work with Rainer Schmidt and Walter Levin, as well as subsequent meetings with Ferenc Rados and Eberhard Feltz had great impact on his musical formation. His 15-year leadership of the Bennewitz Quartet (1998–2013) took him to many international stages and music festivals and earned the group numerous accolades.
In 2011 Jiří Nĕmeček moved to Basel. He performs regularly with the Sonos Ensemble and as guest lead violinist of Collegium Musicum, Kammerorchester Basel, and the Stuttgarter Kammerorchester. He plays various chamber music projects and teaches violin at the Alten Kantonschule in Aarau and at the Hochschule für Musik in Basel.
Jiří Němeček & Ludovic van Hellemont – Festival frauenkomponiert 2018
Our collaborative work entails becoming as familiar as possible with a particular work, “translating” it as faithfully as possible, and bringing it into harmony with one’s own musicality.
We are very happy to support the project frauenkomponiert. High-quality music by women composers should be performed more often. We believe strongly that at the end of the day it is not the gender of the author that should be at the forefront, but the quality of the music itself. (Jiří Němeček and Ludovic van Hellemont)
Adrian Oetiker – Festival frauenkomponiert 2018
Swiss pianist Adrian Oetiker is a successful soloist and chamber musician, as well as being in great demand as a teacher. Critics have described his playing as “flawless, richly varied jeu perlé”, praising his “touch as light as a feather” and “precisely calibrated tone colours”.
After initial piano lessons with his father and Hans-Rudolf Boller, Adrian studied in the class of Homero Francesch at the Zürcher Hochschule der Künste and with Bella Davidovich at the Juilliard School in New York. He also took lessons with Lazar Berman. He won many national prizes and scholarships, soon followed by international distinctions and prices (e.g. Cologne, Clara Haskil, Dublin). In 1994, he was awarded the cultural price of his home town for founding the Chamber Music Festival of St. Gallen. In 1995 he won the prestigious ARD International Piano Competition in Munich.
His concerts in Europe, America and Australia led to collaborations with the Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich, the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Staatskapelle Dresden, and the Irish National Symphony Orchestra. After a successful tour of Europe with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, he was invited to Australia twice and played with most of the continent’s orchestras. He performed all of Béla Bartók’s piano concertos with the Orchestre Symphonique de Mulhouse under Daniel Klajner. Adrian has played recitals and chamber music at the Berliner Philharmonie, the Gewandhaus Leipzig, the Festspielhaus Salzburg, the KKL, and the Teatro La Fenice. He enjoys playing chamber music with his wife, Paola De Piante Vicin (Piano Duo Paola&Adrian Oetiker), the Feininger Trio Berlin, and with Eduard Brunner, Ana Chumachenco, Homero Francesch, Mario Hossen, and Wen-Sinn Yang.
Adrian has been professor of piano at the Hochschule für Musik Basel since 1996, and was appointed professor of piano at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater in Munich in 2011. He is also artistic director of the International Summer Academy of Ettal.
Adelina Oprean – frauenkomponiert 2016, Solo Violin; Festival frauenkomponiert 2018 ARIA Quartet
Adelina Oprean was born in Deva, Rumania. She studied at the Bucharest School of Music under Stefan Gheorghiu, in Gstaad under Alberto Lysy and Yehudi Menuhin and with Sándor Végh at the Mozarteum in Salzburg.
She won international prizes at the Bach Competition in Leipzig, at the chamber music competitions in Belgrade, Colmar and Geneva, in Eisenmatt (Joachim competition) and London (First prize Carl Flesch Competition).
From 1982 to 1986, Adelina Oprean taught at the Menhuhin Music Academy in Gstaad and assisted Sándor Végh in Lenk. She took up a professorship at the Basel School of Music in 1985.
She has performed throughout Europe, America, South America, and Asia as well as recording for radio and television. Oprean has been a permanent member of the Basel-based ARIA quartet, one of Switzerland’s leading quartets, since 1987.
Nicoleta Paraschivescu – Festival frauenkomponiert 2018
Nicoleta Paraschivescu teaches organ at the Basel Conservatory and is organist at the Theodorskirche in Basel. In 2015 she completed her doctorate at the University of Leiden (NL) and was prize-winner of the hibou-Foundation (CH). She is musical director of the ensemble La Floridiana, with which she has released two CD’S: premiere recordings of the Haydn student, Marianna Martines on the SONY label.
Olga Machonova Pavlu – frauenkomponiert 2016: Solo Soprano
Olga Machonova Pavlu was born in Prague and now lives in Riehen, near Basel. She completed her wide-ranging musical studies (piano, composition, conducting, choral conducting, and singing) in the Czech Republic (Prague, Conservatory) and in Switzerland (Basel/Zurich, Academy of Music). She studied conducting with Manfred Honeck, Ralf Weikert, and Horst Stein, theory with Rudolf Kelterborn, singing with Maria Sandulescu, Denis Hall, and KS Gundula Janowitz.
Olga Machonova Pavlu is active as a conductor and singer. As a opera conductor she has worked at the Prague State Opera, the Prague Estates Theatre, the National Theatre Brno, the Zurich Opera Studio, on the concert stage with the orchestras Brno State Philharmonic, Prague Chamber Philharmonic, Filharmonie B. Martinů, Radio Symphony Orchestra of SWR Stuttgart, Symphony Orchestra Basel, Concertino Basel, and Sinfonietta Basel. As a mezzo-soprano she performs in concerts at home and abroad.
Stefka Perifanova – frauenkomponiert 2016: Solo Piano, Festival frauenkomponiert 2021 (Absolut Trio)
Stefka Perifanova studied at the Sofia Music Academy with Prof. Konstantin and Julia Ganev (a pupil of Heinrich Neuhaus). She was then employed as their assistant for four years. In 1993, she was awarded the most prestigious Bulgarian scholarship (Cyrillus and Methodius), which enabled her to pursue postgraduate studies in Switzerland with Rudolf Buchbinder, Gérard Wyss (chamber music and accompaniment), and Bruno Canino. She has been awarded numerous prizes, such as the Edward Tchumi prize for the best soloist diploma of the year and first prize at the Concurso Internacional de Musicada Ciudade do Porto.
She performs internationally as a soloist and is sought after as a chamber music partner and accompanist by figures such as Sol Gabetta, Raphael Oleg, and Hansheinz Schneeberger. She has been a member of the ensemble “Camerata Variabile Basel” since 2005 and is a founder member of the piano trio “Absolut Trio”. The debut of the trio in both the Wigmore Hall and the Zurich Tonhalle in 2007 won high acclaim from the critics. The first CD recording of the group was issued in 2008 (Guild) and received the “Supersonic Award”.
Stefka Perifanova has considerable experience as a juror. She is much in demand for masterclasses and has assisted at courses with Janos Starker, Igor Oistrach, Menahem Pressler, and Bernard Greenhouse. She teaches at the conservatories of Zurich and Basel.
Isabelle Schnöller – frauenkomponiert 2015: Solo Flute
Isabelle Schnöller has been solo flautist of the Kammerorchester Basel – then still called Kammerorchester Serenata – since 1995. In this capacity she has worked with renowned conductors such as Trevor Pinnock, Giovanni Antonini, Mario Venzago, Umberto Benedetti-Michelangeli, Jérémie Rhorer, and Sir Christopher Hogwood. Beyond Basel, tours with the orchestra have taken her regularly to the concert halls of the important metropolises, such as the Wiener Musikverein, the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, the Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires, die Berliner Philharmonie and the KKL in Lucerne. More recently she started playing on period flutes in the orchestra’s baroque projects. In addition, she is a member of Camerata Variabile Basel, which has a fixed concert series in Basel, Zürich and Schaffhausen, the Arion wind quintet, that can be heard regularly in Basel at the BOG Altstadt-Serenaden, the Ensembles Amaltea, and she plays solo flute in the Gstaad Festival Orchestra.
Isabelle studied in her hometown Basel with Kiyoshi Kasai and at the Conservatory of Freiburg (D) with Prof. Robert Aitken. In 1993 she was awarded a soloist diploma with distinction and went on to broaden her studies with a scholarship to the Banff Centre for Fine Arts in Canada. Following on from several prizes and scholarships in Switzerland she won the International Music Competition of the Jeunesses Musicales in Belgrade in 1992 and in 1993 was awarded first prize in the UBS Competition in support of young musicians.
Her particularly warm and expressive sound has inspired many composers to write works for her, among them Stéphane Bortoli, Massimo Botter, Bernfried Pröve, David Philip Hefti and Helena Winkelman. Isabelle presented the flute concerto by Robert Aikten that is dedicated to her to a wide public on an extended tour of Switzerland and has also played the work with the Esprit Orchestra in Toronto. Her solo CD’s have appeared with Jecklin, Ars Musici, derecha, col legno and the edition zeitklang; the last of these presented numerous works by contemporary composers that were written for and dedicated to Isabelle. SONY released the majority of her recordings with the Kammerorchester Basel, one of which was awarded an ECHO Classic.
Marcus Schwarz – Festival frauenkomponiert 2018
Since his debut in 1989, pianist Marcus Schwarz has dedicated himself to American ragtime and inspired audiences to discover this almost forgotten style of music. He was invited to perform ragtime in St. Petersburg (Russia) in 2005 and 2006, and in 2008 performed Scott Joplin’s legendary opera “Treemonisha” with the kammeroper kassel e.V. In 2009, in collaboration with the actress Sabine Wackernagel, he created a programme dedicated to ragtime composers. In 2016 Marcus presented a joint ragtime program with the Argentinean charango virtuoso Diego Jascalevich. Antes Edition released his CD “Ragtime Beauties” in 2014 with music by Scott Joplin, Joseph F. Lamb, James Scott and other ragtime composers: “… extremely satisfying from the first note to the very last. Marcus Schwarz represents Germany very well as an interpreter of ragtime”. (Jack Rummel, Ragtime Reviews, April 2015).
Marcus Schwarz was born in Dinkelsbühl/Franconia (D). After piano lessons with Ruskin K. Cooper (to whom he owes his love of ragtime) and Detlev Eisinger and musicology studies at the Frankfurt/Main Conservatory, he studied piano at the Music Academy of the City of Kassel with Nikolaj Posnjakow, Joachim Kirschner and Iwan Urwalow. Masterclasses and interpretation seminars followed with, for example, Carmen Daniela and Rudolf Kratzert.
Swiss Vocal Consort – Festival frauenkomponiert 2021
The Swiss Vocal Consort was founded in 2018 by Marco Amherd and held its debut concerts in November 2018. Its aim is to present vocal music in Switzerland at the highest level and give added value to the Swiss cultural scene. Thus, the ensemble’s programmes often feature works that are rarely heard otherwise. The programmes presented by the group build a bridge from early to new music and combine diverse sound worlds.
Singer Pur – Festival frauenkomponiert 2021
The desire to make a cappella singing the focus of their lives was clear to the founder members of Singer Pur right from their school days: soon after leaving, five former members of the famous Regensburger Domspatzen cathedral boys’ choir realized their dream and founded the group.
It was a fortunate love affair that brought a soprano into their ranks. Soon afterwards the sextet with an unusual combination of voices (a soprano, three tenors, a baritone and a bass) won first prize in the 1994 Deutscher Musikwettbewerb (the German national competition), a year later the coveted Grand Prix for vocal ensembles at the international Tampere Music Festival in Finland, and was launched on its road to becoming the Germany’s leading vocal group. Soon television and radio appearances, CD recordings, invitations to major festivals and concerts in almost 60 countries established an international career.
The Singer Pur discography consists of 25 CDs, several of which have received awards: two of them “Le Choc de l’Année” by the French music magazine “Le Monde de la Musique” and three more the ECHO Klassik Award in 2005, 2007 and 2011, considered the most prestigious classical music CD award in Europe. In 2013 Singer Pur received the prestigious Caeciliaprijs (Belgium). One of the three music editions with arrangements by and dedicated to Singer Pur was named “Best edition of the year” during the 2009 Frankfurter Musikmesse.
Matthias Wamser – Festival frauenkomponiert 2021
Matthias Wamser is a Director of Music at St. Anthony’s Church in Basel, house organist at the Open church of St. Elisabeth, director of the rüschlikon choir, and a board member of both the Zurich Church Musicians’ Association and the Church Music Association in the diocese of Basel. He performs a wide variety of music at the organ, piano, and harpsichord and has given many world premieres as part of his international concert activities. He writes articles for specialist journals in Germany and Switzerland. As freelancer editor for several music publishers, he oversees editions of old and new music. He received his training primarily at the Staatliche Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst in Stuttgart and at the Schola Cantorum in Basel.