Heidelberger Frühling is already planning two major events at the beginning of the year: The Heidelberg String Quartet Festival at the end of January, which is already sold out, and the biennial International Song Competition »Das Lied«. Due to the current development, digital alternative offers will be created with the media partners for the String Quartet Festival in case the events have to cancelled. In addition, the advance sale for the competition »Das Lied« will NOT start next Monday: Such a dense competition week with consistently 8-hour preliminary rounds and a final of several hours in front of an audience actually present would not be justifiable from the current perspective. However, since 2017 the competition has been offered via livestream, which has been very well received by a local and international audience of Lied enthusiasts even in the corona-free past.
Alexander Jussow, violin
Jelena Galic, violin
Lilya Tymchyshyn, viola
Bettina Kessler, violoncello
The Malion Quartet is comprised of four passionate chamber musicians, each of whom, even before the foundation of the quartet, performed at a number of reknowned Chamber Music Festivals, including Verbier, Schleswig-Holstein, Rheingau Musikfestival, Heidelberger Frühling, Rencontres Musicales d‘Evian, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Musikfest Stuttgart, Podium Festival Esslingen, Mozartfest Würzburg, and Konzerthaus Berlin.
The young ensemble‘s busy concert schedule has included concerts in halls such as the Alte Oper Frankfurt, das Holzhausenschlösschen and the Solitude Palace in Stuttgart.
Shortly after the quartet was founded in 2018, they became scholarship holders in the Foundation Villa Musica Rheinland-Pfalz, as well as winning the Competition of the Polytechnic Society in Frankfurt.
In 2019 the members of the young ensemble were taken on as scholarship holders in the European Chamber Music Academy (ECMA). In the same year, they became prizewinners in the PE-Förderungen Competition, and in 2020 they were the only string quartet to be taken on by the foundation.
All four musicians are prizewinners of national and international competitions, such as Deutsche Stiftung Musikleben, Peter-Pirazzi-Stiftung and Yehudi Menuhin Live Music Now.
The quartet has received essential musical guidance from Prof. Eberhard Feltz, as well as members of the Alban Berg Quartet, Artemis Quartet and Cuarteto Casals. The four members of the Malion Quartet are Masters students in the Quartet Class of Prof. Tim Vogler at the University of Music in Frankfurt am Main.
Passion. Perfection. Raw intensity. With these fundamentals, the chamber orchestra TrondheimSolistene (The Trondheim Soloists) is carving out its own musical territory.
The orchestra was founded in 1988 to give the best music students in Trondheim an opportunity to play together and to gain concert experience. It has since established itself as one of the most distinguished ensembles in Norway, and has won international recognition for its own distinctively open and clear orchestral sound, described by the British music magazine “Classic FM” as “The Trondheim Sound”.
Teamwork and a lively musical inquisitiveness are core values. From August 2017 the violinist and music teacher Geir Inge Lotsberg, is the Artistic Director and continues to develop the virtuosity and confidence that allow them to play what they want, when they want, and to take chances rather than play safe.
The orchestra’s energetic musicality and sheer joy in music-making are infectious. In 1999 a fruitful association with the violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter was begun that has spanned many years and has included concerts, tours and recordings, and this has contributed to the orchestra’s growing reputation at home and abroad, leading to an increasing number of engagements. The orchestra has performed with leading artists not only in classical music, but also in jazz, folk music, rock and pop.
TrondheimSolistene has been featured on more than 50 albums. Its recordings for the 2L label have won great acclaim, earning not only three Spellemannpriser (Norwegian music awards), but also, for the albums “Divertimenti”, “In Folk Style”, “Souvenir” and “Reflections”, a total of ten Grammy nominations, as well as glowing international reviews. The orchestra’s best-selling release to date has been Vivaldi’s “The Four Seasons” with Mutter as soloist, on the Deutsche Grammophon label (with approximately 700,000 records sold).
The development of musical talent and the fostering of an enduring musical environment in Trondheim constitute a vital part of this orchestra’s work. It has close ties with the Department of Music at Trondheim’s NTNU (the Norwegian University of Science and Technology). The promotion of Norwegian music and of contemporary music is also a strong commitment. The ensemble never travels abroad without Norwegian music on its programme, and it has premiered about 50 works specially written for the orchestra.
The orchestra’s many years of collaboration with visual artist Håkon Gullvåg have been very successful. He has produced artwork for the covers of three of its records, and the orchestra has played at the openings of many of his exhibitions abroad – for example in China, the Middle East and across Europe.
TrondheimSolistene has three main partners: NTNU, which, in addition to what has already been mentioned, uses the orchestra to help profile itself around the world; Sparebank1 SMN, whose collaboration began in 2013 and Koteng Eiendom AS from 2018.
Geir Inge Lotsberg began his professional career at a young age and has distinguished himself as one of Norway’s most active chamber musicians. He studied with Leif Jørgensen (1927-1988) in Oslo from the age of ten for eight years, Sandor Vègh in Salzburg, Camilla Wicks in Houston and Ana Chumachenco in Munich.
In 1991 he became one of the founding members of Oslo String Quartet. In addition to collaborations with other musicians including Håvard Gimse, Einar Steen-Nøkleberg, Vebjørn Anvik and Kåre Nordstoga, Lotsberg has performed as a soloist with the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, the Norwegian National Opera Orchestra, the Norwegian Radio Orchestra and Camerata Academica Salzburg.
He released a number of CD-recordings featuring works by J. S. Bach, Carl Nielsen and Edvard Grieg, and two recordings of contemporary music for solo violin. His latest album is the recording of Herman Vogt’s new Violin Concerto with the Norwegian Radio Orchestra.
Lotsberg is much in demand as a teacher and orchestra leader, working regularly since 2005 with TrondheimSolistene and as a professor at the Barratt Due Institute of Music in Oslo since 1994.
He holds the position as Artistic Director of the Trondheim Soloists from August 2017.
For many years, Geir Inge Lotsberg has played a Joseph Guarnerius filius Andrae dating from 1703, provided by Dextra Musica AS.
The advance sale for the 2021 Heidelberger Frühling starts today. In order to comply with the pandemic-related event requirements and safety regulations, ticket sales currently cover around 30% of the usual seating capacity. Tickets are available in the Webshop (see Calendar & Tickets), by telephone on +49 6221 584 00 44 (Mon-Fri 10am-6pm) and at all known advance booking offices. The advance sale for the 2021 String Quartet Festival begins on 16 November.
The Heidelberger Frühling 2021 will take place from 20 March to 18 April 2021 and will celebrate its 25th birthday. A total of 127 events in 19 venues are on the program for this anniversary season. The 25th edition of Heidelberger Frühling has the motto »FESTspiel« and, over the four weeks of the festival, will focus on this topic from different perspectives. Guests are mainly artists who have been involved in the Heidelberger Frühling as companions over the past 25 years: Jörg Widmann, Martin Grubinger, Igor Levit, Thomas Hampson, Thomas Quasthoff, Gabriela Montero and Anna Lucia Richter, among others. Tickets are available from 2 November.
Sindy Mohamed appears this season as soloist and chamber musician in major festivals in Europe like Moritzburg Festival, Spannungen Heimbach, Schubertiade Hohenems, Kronberg Festival, Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Festival Présences, Festival d’Aix-en-Provence, Folles Journées de Nantes, collaborating with Isabelle Faust, Tabea Zimmermann, Lawrence Power, Steven Isserlis, Jan Vogler, Maximillian Hornung, Kian Soltani, Yura Lee, Adrien La Marca among many others. Other highlights include performances as soloist with the Ensemble Multilatérale in Paris, the Cairo Symphony Orchestra and the Orchestra Vigo 430 in Spain. Extended concert tours across the world include recital debuts in the Wigmore Hall, the Carnegie Hall and the Suntory Hall.
Prize winner of the International Anton Rubinstein Viola Competition 2017, Award from the “Ottilie Selbach Redslob Foundation”, scholarship holder of “Spannungen Festival” Sindy in January 2018 made her Debut in England alongside Lars Vogt and the Royal Northern Sinfonia orchestra as part of the “New Year New Artists” Festival. She took part in the Festival d’Aix-en-Provence performing together with Tabea Zimmermann. On the invitation of Rolando Villazon, Sindy participated to the Program Stars von Morgen broadcasted on Arte TV. She took part in Kronberg Academy’s Chamber Music Connects the World performing with Steven Isserlis, Christian Tetzlaff and Gidon Kremer.
Born in Marseille, into a non-musician family in 1992, the Egyptian violist Sindy Mohamed received her first viola lessons at the age of 8. After graduating from the Conservatoire de Marseille, Sindy pursued her studies at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris and at the Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler. She absolved her final studies as “young soloist” at the prestigious Kronberg Academy with Tabea Zimmermann.
Further musical inspiration was given to Sindy through her participation and special invitations to numerous international masterclasses and academies such as “Festival Quatuors à Bordeaux”,”Festival d’Aix-en- Provence”,”Summer Festival Salzburg”,”Seiji Ozawa International Switzerland Academy”,”European Chamber Music Academy”. She worked with Daniel Barenboim, Antoine Tamestit, Roberto Diaz, Morten Carlsen, Nobuko Imai, Jean Sulem, Sadao Harada, Pamela Frank and Tatjana Masurenko. Alongside her studies and career, Sindy gained already a large orchestral experience. Playing in leading positions of orchestras like the Rundfunk Sinfonie Orchester Berlin, Deutsche Oper and Komische Oper Berlin. She had the opportunity to perform with chief conductors such as Sir Simon Rattle, Marek Janowski, Vladimir Jurovski, Paavo Järvi, Francois Xavier Roth, Seiji Ozawa, Donald Runnicles. In addition, she has been a member of the “West-Eastern Divan Orchestra” since 2013 under Maestro Daniel Barenboim. Sindy plays on a viola by Jean-Baptiste Vuillaume generously on loan from Beares International Violin Society in London.
The “Paganini (of the recorder)”, “magician of the recorder” and “The world’s leading recorder player” – these are just a few of the descriptions the press has about Maurice Steger. In order to live up to such high expectations, one requires not only astonishing technique, but also charisma, intellect and a special sensitivity for the music. Maurice Steger has been proving all of this to his audiences, inspiring with his intense tone and unstoppable energy in various concert formats all over the world.
As a soloist, conductor or both at once, he regularly performs with the top period instrument ensembles, such as the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, La Cetra, the Venice Baroque Orchestra, the English Concert, the Canadian Violons du Roy and I Barocchisti. He also performs with leading modern orchestras such as the Zurich Chamber Orchestra, the hr-Sinfonieorchester Frankfurt, the Musikkollegium Winterthur, the Berlin Baroque Soloists (Berlin Philharmonic), or the NDR Radiophilharmonie.
Chamber music plays a notable role in the richly varied spectrum of Maurice Steger’s artistic endeavours. With fellow musicians and friends such as Hille Perl, Avi Avital, Daniele Caminiti, Lee Santana, Naoki Kitaya, Mauro Valli, Sebastian Wienand, Fiorenza de Donatis, Diego Fasolis, Sol Gabetta or the young French harpsichordist Jean Rondeau, he dedicates himself to a continuously updated repertoire of Early music. Besides this, Maurice Steger also engages with new concert formats and contemporary compositions.
Maurice Steger loves the interaction between different cultures, and getting to know other ways of working and interpretive approaches, working as a concert artist, teacher and juror, not only in Europe but throughout the world. Tours of Asia and Australia have led to performances with the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra, the Malaysia Philharmonic Orchestra, the Taipei Symphony among others. He was the first recorder player from the West to perform with the Traditional Taipei Chinese Orchestra. He also regularly performs in North and South America.
His commitment to musical education is also extremely important to him: besides the directorship of the Gstaad Baroque Academy at the Menuhin Festival Gstaad, which he took over in 2013 in addition to diverse master classes, he invented the character of “Tino Flautino” in order to encourage young children to playfully engage with classical music. Tino Flautino’s newest adventure with his tomcat Leo will be presented in German, Swiss-German and Italien.
Through his own unending thirst for knowledge, he succeeds time and again to show how much there is still to be discovered about Baroque music. For example, on his recording Souvenirs, he presented works that he discovered in the private library of Count Harrach in Naples, and for this was awarded the ECHO Klassik. The latest recording Mr. Handel’s Dinner with La Cetra Barockorchester Basel was released in the spring of 2019 and reflects on Handel’s opera performances and especially their intermissions in London. The recording was received with enthusiasm by listeners and the press.
One wonders sometimes, where Maurice Steger gets all this energy with which he has helped the recorder to make a comeback, as Arte recently presented in a documentary The Recorder: A Comeback. But when you see how much love for the instrument, the music and the audience he has in each of his many projects, it becomes clear: Maurice Steger is also carved out of very special wood.
Heidelberger Frühling announces two new colleagues: Annett Baumeister is head of the »Art and Innovation« division and, in consultation with director Thorsten Schmidt, is responsible for the program of Heidelberger Frühling, Heidelberg String Quartet Festival and the concert series »Chamber Music Plus« as well as the events of the International SongCentre Heidelberg. Previously she was the leading concert planner at Festspielhaus Baden-Baden. Christian Eckhardt will become Commercial Director of Heidelberger Frühling gGmbH from October 1, 2020. He is drawn from the Elbe to the Neckar: until the end of last season he was Administrative Director and Deputy Director of the Dresden Music Festival and successfully promoted the development of the festival under the direction of cellist Jan Vogler.
Heidelberger Frühling and cooperates with its colleagues from Enjoy Jazz for two concerts. The Festival begins tomorrow, 2 October 2. On 18 October, pianist and composer Hermann Kretzschmar, member of the Ensemble Modern, will perform his »Beethoven Scan«, a radically shortened version of the 32 Beethoven Sonatas. On 9 November, the young pianist Johanna Summer will perform jazz improvisations on compositions by Robert Schumann. Both events take place at Alte Feuerwache Mannheim. Tickets at www.enjoy-jazz.de.