Over the past seasons, the Rubens Quartet has enjoyed many performances full of inspiration with flutist Marieke Schneemann and therefore they have recorded the four Mozart flute quartets together in Schiedam in May 2012, in two special live recording sessions/concerts. Go to www.rubensquartet.com to order your very own copy today and read more about the collaboration (click on 'News'). The CD is also available for download via itunes and www.amazon.com
The start of 2012/13 at Guildhall School of Music and Drama has been brimming with chamber music activity. Alongside our regular visiting quartets, Belcea and Endellion, improvisation workshops with David Dolan and performance presentation work with our drama school, the students have had some incredibly inspiring and thought-provoking masterclasses with guest artists Erich Hobarth, Ferenc Rados, and new permanent faculty member Levon Chilingirian. Last year’s brilliant Fellowship ensemble, the Heath Quartet, also continued to visit the school to give masterclass sessions as part of their professional development scheme.
Two very successful teaching and coaching exchange trips have taken place. Our school of WBP sent a wind Quintet to Gottenburg to receive coaching. In Strings, Alasdair Tait and Louise Hopkins accompanied the Trio Isimsiz to Mozarteum in Salzburg. While they gave masterclass, the trio received a week of inspiring teaching from Mozarteum faculty, including Wolfgang Redik and Thomas Riebl.
There are more than fifty regular groups ranging from the more traditional String Quartets and Piano Trios to mixed ensembles such as Clarinet Trios, 'Schubert Octet' groups and ensembles with harp, in addition to a number of project-based ensembles. Much emphasis is placed on the challenges of organisation within groups and the importance of efficient rehearsal techniques, since the demands on the individual while studying are inevitably high and multi-faceted.
The first in a series of annual "Viola Days" at the Guildhall resulted in the creation of a dozen viola ensembles, from duos to octets, providing not only a chance to showcase the versatility of the viola students at the GSMD but also to highlight the strength and depth of repertoire for viola ensemble. Such works also offered the chance for students and coaches to work both on instrument-specific issues as well as chamber music skills in a way that is not normally possible with mixed ensembles.
With an average of two days per week of visiting chamber music coaching and masterclasses, the term proved one of the busiest ever; it also marked a new level of intensity of chamber music provision for double bassists at the Guildhall, with the formation of a number of bass ensembles and coaching sessions with bass emphasis working on chamber reductions of Haydn Symphonies.
Student performances have included three high-profile concerts in the Barbican Centre main hall – wind music of Mozart and string/piano music of Dvorak and Schumann – and a full day devoted to the vocal and chamber music of Catalan composers (Montsalvatge, Toldra, Mompou)
Overall, the most intensive and exciting term yet!
Our recording of Michael Nyman’s piano trios has just been released, launching The Michael Nyman Chamber Music series on MNR.
Included on the album, Piano Trios 1992-2010, are the premiere recordings of Poczatek and The Photography of Chance as well as performances of Yellow Beach and the Joseph Brodsky inspired Time Will Pronounce.
Concerts have taken us on a South African tour including a recital for the Johannesburg Music Society, a London recital of American trios by John Harbison, Bright Sheng, Charles Wuorinen and Evan Ziporyn described as ‘a ‘brilliant performance’ in The Sunday Times and the commencement of our residency at St. Patrick’s College Drumcondra, Dublin. The December visit includes a composition forum and workshops on pieces selected from the ‘call for scores’, a presentation of John Cage’s Musicircus and a lunchtime concert with Schoenberg’s (arr. Steurmann) Verklärte Nacht and Stephen Gardner’s The Mayfly.
Looking ahead to the New Year, we have concerts in Cardiff (with Patricia Rozario, soprano) on 5th February and Manchester, 28th February. In March we feature trios by Pascal Dusapin, Johannes Maria Staud, David Fennessy, Luke Bedford and Salvatore Sciarrino in a special New Music Festival at the National Concert Hall Dublin. We travel to Queens University Belfast with Robert Plane (clarinet) on 20th March for a short residency featuring two recitals and new works by Queens’ composers. In April we perform in Prague and continue our residency in St. Patrick’s College with visits in February, March and April. We are looking forward to recording a CD of Robert Fokkens’ music in January including his piano trio, Mammals of Southern Africa.
And summer 2013 includes a City of London Festival recital featuring the world premiere performance of The River Still Sings, a multimedia work by Frank Lyons and visuals by Paul Moore, featuring the voice of actor James Nesbitt, which will be repeated at the Walled City Music Festival, Derry, celebrating UK City of Culture in July.
Thanks to some effective ECMTA networking, ECMTA member Pekka Helasvuo, co-editor of the Jean Sibelius Works, sent a call for information to the Music Library Association through Dr David Lasocki, former reference Librarian at the Cook Music Library of Indiana University. The search has revealed several manuscripts thought to be lost. Mr Helasvuo has authorized the posting of the following exchange.
A few weeks after the end of the 13th edition of the Cordes en Ballade Festival, it seems that time is flying by. One again, it was a real pleasure for the Debussy Quartet to be on the road to the Ardeche region! This year’s theme was “Welcome to America”. 10 days, 9 cities, beautiful landscapes and a lot of great artists - the Debussy Quartet, Franck Tortiller Trio, and Percussions Claviers de Lyon - brought life to this adventure and provided a vision of the American dream to the public, along with the collaboration of Marc Mellits, the American resident composer.
A perfect combination of elements!
At the same time, the summer academy of Debussy Quartet welcomed quartets young and less young, amateur or experienced, pre-formed or not. During 10 days, they learned, rehearsed and evolved with and alongside the Debussy Quartet and the other artists. A rich experience for all!
The dates for next year are already set:
- Festival Cordes en Ballade 2013: from 5 to 14 July 2013
The Quartet course at the Conservatoire de Lyon:
- After a first year successful, the Debussy Quartet will continue their string quartet class with the collaboration of the Conservatoire de Lyon (Conservatoire à Rayonnement Régional).
More information >>
Just ended in Italy the first edition of Chamber Music in Italy, chamber music workshop that took place in Forio d'Ischia, a small island in front of Naples. Teachers were Serguei Mesropian, Claudio Cavallaro, Giuseppe Devastato and Cristina Cavalli (also artistic director), coming from Armenia, Spain and Italy. The workshop had the moral support of italian Regione Campania and spanish Fundacion Eutherpe, presided by Margarita Morais.
During two weeks, from August 1st to 14th, professors and students worked closely to prepare the evening concerts. On a terrace with an magnificent view of the Mediterranean Sea (thanks to the beautiful location of our host Hotel Providence) they played many chamber works, from Mozart to Baermann, from Granados to some contemporary music.
One of the main features of Chamber Music in Italy is the renaissance and diffusion of Neapolitan Masters' music, from Leo, Scarlatti, Pergolesi to the present. The last concert closed with a world première, "Tarantella Criptica", by the Neapolitan composer Giuseppe Devastato. "Tarantella Criptica" was played by the American clarinetist Joseph Rosen (who the composition is dedicated to), the Armenian cellist Serguei Mesropian, and the italian pianist Cristina Cavalli. Tarantella is a typical Neapolitan dance, also very common in the south of Italy; the composer intention was a homage to the performers' nationalities. There are Armenian, American and Neapolitan themes used throughout the composition, to suggest a musical message about peace and collaboration between different countries and cultures.
The main theme of this 10th edition of the Internaitonal Latvian Young Musicians’ Masterclasses was New Dimensions in Music, and took place from July 14 – 23 in the spacious and welcoming Sigulda Arts School. To celebrate the tenth anniversary of the master classes, which have taken place biannually in Latvia since 1994, 16 concerts took place in Riga, the Sigulda Castle chamber music hall and the beautiful White Grand Piano Concert Hall. Dr. Ingrīda Gutberga (USA) and Normunds Vīksne (vice-rector of Academic Work at the Jāzeps Vītols Latvian Academy of Music) were the directors of the master classes. Dace Aperāne (USA) was the artistic director and Guntars Zvejnieks (director of the Sigulda Arts School) was the administrator of the master classes.
22 mixed ensembles (duos to septets) of children from children’s music schools across Lithuania gathered at the V. Jakubenas music school in Birzhai for an intensive chamber music workshop and festival September 6-8, 2012. The workshop/festival included teachers not only from important music schools in Lithuania, but also included representatives from Latvia and the United Kingdom. The project received support from the Lithuanian Musicians’ Union, which was represented by its dynamic and creative President, the composer Audronė ŽIGAITYTĖ-NEKROŠIENĖ. The Musicians’ Union presented gifts to participating ensembles and their teachers, and demonstrated the commitment of musicians to the development of a love of chamber music in young people. The significance of the event was also underlined by the presence of local and national television filming both recorded and live interviews and lessons during the weekend.
We are honoured to announce the ensembles chosen for the 7th Trondheim International Chamber Music Academy 2012.
- Zelkova Quartet (UK)
- Arbellio Quartet (UK)
- Pierrot Quartet (Germany)
- Jubilee Quartet (UK)
- Trio Patetico (Norway)
The young musicians’ level of playing is amazingly high, and applications have come in from all over the world, as far away as Azerbaijan and Colombia. The combination of internationally renowned instructors and an exciting festival running parallel is being noticed internationally, and during this week Trondheim is becoming an international meeting ground for young professional and student string quartet.
The four quartets were selected from several applications from all over the world. The Norwegian Trio Patetico is specially invited after winning the competition Norwegian Young Musicians 2011. Trondheim International Chamber Music Academy takes place 18 - 23 September as part of Trondheim Chamber Music Festival. String quartets from all over the world are welcome to apply for the academy, which focuses on advanced student quartets and young professional quartets.
Hatto Beyerle is Academy leader 2012. Other Instructors are Quatuor Ebène, pianist Gunilla Süssmann and Sir Peter Maxwell Davies. The academy offers a unique opportunity with a combination of Master classes and playing chamber music together with the instructors. The Academy takes part as Trondheim Chamber Music Festival 2012, and the Academy’s closing concert on Sunday 23 September is part of the festival’s programme.
One of the groups will be chosen to go straight on to next year’s Trondheim International Chamber Music Competition, where they will be competing for attractive prizes and concert engagements.
New of 2012 is that Trondheim International Chamber Music Competition has become a part of the World Federation of International Music Competitions, a global network of music competiton.
The Fondacion Monteleón calls for applicant to participate in a chamber music festival for young chamber ensembles December 7-13, 2012. The deadline for the next edition was August 30th, but interested ensembles can still contact the Fondacion for information and should put this event on their calendars for next season.
Tsalka's recent chamber music performances were with flutist Oksana Sinkova, violinist Hugo Ticciati, cellist Dmitry Eremin, keyboard performer Sonia Lee and pianist Maria Teresa Frenk, at the Bellas Artes Theather in Mexico City, the Hermitage Festival in St. Petersburg, the Nordic Historical Keyboard Festival in Kuopio, the Forbidden City Concert Hall in Beijing, the Israeli and Hong Kong radios, the Town Hall in Tallinn, and St. Denis Festival in Paris.
Tsalka has also been performing and teaching extensively (Stockholm, Tel-Aviv, Helsinki) and is pleased to announce several CD releases:
- Grand Piano/Naxos label. CDs 1 and 2 (from 5) were just released. A critical edition of works performed by Artaria Editions will follow.
- A world premiere recordings of Daniel Gottlob Tuerk's Keyboard Sonatas (1750-1813)
- Performed on five historical Keyboard Instruments (which were also never recorded before)
Pro Corda, the International Chamber Music Academy, has recently launched an innovative Chamber Music Coaching Fellowship scheme, thanks to generous sponsorship from the Leverhulme Trust. The scheme was launched in May and is the first of its kind in Europe to offer Fellowship holders coaching experience across an age progressive range of chamber music courses from age 8 to 18. The scheme appoints 6 fellows each year based on interview and auditions. Applications are taken from Conservatoires and Universities from across the United Kingdom. Placements last 2 years and allow fellows to gain extensive and intensive experience on top of their existing undergraduate or postgraduate study. As well as the course placements ( which themselves lead to guaranteed fully paid coaching work,) the Pro Corda/ Leverhulme fellows also gain experience adjudicating within the National Chamber Music Festival for Schools operated by Pro Corda. If they wish, they can also have involvement within Pro Corda's many outreach programmes - all of which draw on the core ethos of small ensemble training.
Between courses and placements, fellows receive tutorials and workshop sessions developing areas such as how to use improvisation and creative work within chamber music coaching, together with teaching techniques such as Dalcroze Eurythmics.
Founded in 1969, Pro Corda is, in the United Kingdom, synonymous with the practice of chamber music. Currently running residential courses for children ages 8 to 18 and non residential courses for children 5 to 10, Pro Corda has for generations been contributing to the development of a community of chamber musicians. Courses are organized by age groups throughout the year, and it is not uncommon for young people to return to the courses over a dozen times, slowly progressing through the different age levels to reach the senior course. In a society in which music education is not available through a conservatory system as exists in many other European countries, Pro Corda has provided a framework for the regular training of young musicians in a broad range of repertoire and ensemble skills.
Summer Courses 2012 (Slovenia and Italy)
Chamber Music Festivals (Italy)
Michael Flaksman also sends musical greetings via Youtube: "Endlich habe auch ich etwas in YouTube! Herzlichst, Michael"