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On march 18, 2018, Venezuelan pianist Gabriela Montero has been awarded the 2018 music award of »Heidelberger Frühling«. For Montero, music-making without a functional ethical compass is pointless. As an artist, she uses her status as one of the most coveted pianists of the day to point the finger at grievances and injustice, for example in Venezuela. As a human being, she employs the – musical – resources at her command to make the world a better place.
The laudation was held by Igor Levit.
Steven Walter is a cultural entrepreneur and performing cellist currently based in Berlin and Stuttgart, Germany. Born in 1986 and raised near Stuttgart, Steven was early to discover his passion for classical music. He started playing the cello at age 8 and soon began performing with various ensemble. After graduating, Steven studied the cello in Oslo and Detmold. He has performed as soloist and chamber musician at many venues in Europe and throughout Skandinavia, and has received invitations to several international Festivals, e.g. International Chamber Music Festival, Egersund International Chamber Music Festival, Podium Festival Iceland, Idyllwild Festival, Markgräfler Herbst and Podiumfestivalen Haugesund. He is a member of the International Mahler Orchestra as well as founding member of the Badische Kammerphilharmonie.
Additionally to his performance career, Steven is a very engaged cultural entrepreneur and manager. He has founded and currently is artistic & managing director of the PODIUM Festival Esslingen (Germany), a very successful innovative European chamber music festival. In recognition of his work as an innovative music promoter he has received a prestigious ECHO Klassik Award in 2010 and nomination to Cultural Manager of the Year 2011. He regularly talks and writes on issues of concert design and cultural management.
Thomas Halle was born in 1984 in Berlin. During his studies at the Hochschule für Schauspielkunst “Ernst Busch” he performed as Hamlet at the Deutsches Theater Berlin under the direction of Andreas Kriegenburg, and at BAT Studiotheater he starred in Sven Regener’s THE LITTLE BROTHER under the direction of Leander Haußmann and appeared in projects with the directors Robert Hartmann and David Czesienski. At the Theater Heidelberg, he also appeared in the film adaptation GEGEN DIE WAND, directed by Mareike Mikat.
From 2011 to 2015 he was part of the ensemble of the Staatstheater Karlsruhe. In March 2015, he was honored with the Günther Rühle Prize for his outstanding acting performances in ICH BEREUE NICHTS. Since 2015/16, Thomas Halle works as a freelance. Among others, he performed at the Schauspiel Stuttgart in DER STURM under the direction of Armin Petras.
Olga Pasichnyk (Pasiecznik) born in Ukraine. She studied piano and musical pedagogy in native Rivne, voice at the Kiev Conservatory and at the Chopin Academy of Music in Warsaw (postgraduate studies). In 1992 she became a soloist of the Warsaw Chamber Opera.
She sang with success major roles in operas of Monteverdi, Pergolesi, Gluck, Handel, Mozart, Weber, Rossini, Verdi, Puccini, Bizet, Debussy, Tchaikovsky, contemporary composers in the most of the countries of Europe, in Australia, Canada, Japan, Australia and USA. Olga Pasichnyk performed at numerous concerts and international music festivals in the famous concert halls and theatres, incl. Opéra National de Paris – Opéra Bastille, Palais Garnier, Théâtre des Champs-Élysées, Théâtre Châtelet, Salle Pleyel (Paris), Concertgebouw (Amsterdam), Berliner Konzerthaus, Teatro Real, Auditorio Nacional de Música (Madrid), Bayerische Staatsoper, Palais des Beaux-Arts, Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie (Brussels), Theater an der Wien, Bregenzer Festspiele (Austria), Grand Théâtre de Genève, Finnish National Opera, Flemish Opera, Polish National Opera etc., collaborate with Belgium and Polish National Philharmonic Orchestra, Polish National Radio Orchestra, RTVE, Orquesta Nacional de España (Spain), Luxemburg Philharmonic Orchestra, with orchestras Sinfonia Varsovia (Poland), National Philharmonic of Russia, of Teatro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino (Florence), Wiener Symphoniker, L’Orchestre de Radio France, L’Orchestre National de France, Orchestre Colonne (Paris), Das Neue Orchester (Cologne), La Grande Ecurie et La Chambre du Roy and Les Musiciens du Louvre – Grenoble (France), The English Concert, European Union Baroque Orchestra, Academy of Ancient Music, Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, Freiburger Barockorchester, Concerto Vocale, Collegium Vocale Gent, Collegium Novum Zürich, Orchestra of 18th Century conducted by H. Bicket, I. Bolton, F. Brüggen, J.-C. Casadesus, M. Creed, R. Jacobs, R. Goodman, H. Holliger, Ph. Herreweghe, K. Kord, J.-C. Malgoire, J. Maksymiuk, A. de Marchi, M. Minkowski, P. McCreesh, J. Nelsson, P. Neumann, K. Ono, S. Oramo, A. Parrot, K. Penderecki, T. Pinnock, M. Soustrot, A. Spering, C. Spering, M. Viotti, A. Wit, M. Zanetti.
Olga Pasichnyk is the Prizewinner of the International Vocal Competition in s’Hertogenbosch (the Netherlands, 1994 – II prize), Mirjam Helin International Singing Competition in Helsinki (Finland, 1999 – II prize) and The Queen Elisabeth International Music Competition (Belgium, 2000 – III prize, Special Oratorio Prize and Public Prize). She got twice the Fryderyk (the highest Polish phonographic award) for the best solo recordings on 1997 and 2004 (Szymanowski and Lutoslawski), Orfeusz (Warsaw Autumn Festival prize) on 1999, Golden Cross of merit of Poland (2001), A. Hiolski’s prize for the best female opera role of 2004 (Melisande, Debussy – Pelleas et Melisande – Polish National Opera). In 2005 she was nominated as the best opera singer of season 2004/2005 as Almirena (Handel, “Rinaldo”) and 2009-2010 as Roxana (Szymanowski, King Roger) by International Opera Magazine “Opernwelt”. In 2006 she got a Münchner Opernfestspiele prize. In 2011 – the annual Award of the Polish Minister of Culture and National Heritage, and in 2012 – Officer’s Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland.
She recorded over 50 CD’s and DVD’s for different labels incl. DABRINGHAUS UND GRIMM, Harmonia Mundi, NAXOS, OPUS 111.
Richard Stokes is Professor of Lieder at the Royal Academy of Music, has given many lectures and masterclasses on Lieder and art song in the UK and abroad, and is a regular juror at international Song Competitions. For the operatic stage he has translated Wozzeck and La voix humaine (Opera North), and Parsifal, Lulu, L’Amour de loin and Jakob Lenz (ENO). His books include The Spanish Song Companion (with Jacqueline Cockburn), J.S. Bach – The Complete Cantatas (Scarecrow Press), A French Song Companion (with Graham Johnson) (OUP) and The Book of Lieder (Faber). With Alfred Brendel he collaborated on the latter’s Collected Poems: Playing the Human Game (Phaidon). His translations of Kafka’s Metamorphosis and The Trial have been published by Hesperus Press, and Alma Books published his translation (with Hannah Stokes) of Kafka’s Letter to his Father. Penguin Classics published The Penguin Book of English Song – Seven Centuries of Poetry from Chaucer to Auden in the Spring of 2016, and Alma Classics have recently released his translation of Jules Renard’s complete Histoires Naturelles in a dual-language edition (2017). Richard Stokes was awarded the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany in 2012.
Joachim Haas received musical training in flute and saxophone and studied acoustics, communication theory and telecommunication engineering at the Technical University in Berlin (SFB) and is a co-founder of Freq Laboratories (Audiosoftware). He received a stipend from the Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona for research with a concentration in sound analysis and synthesis.
Since 2001 Haas has been a sound director and music computer engineer and since 2007 the deputy artistic director at the SWR Eperimentalstudio.