Elisabeth Brauß

Elisabeth Brauß, born in 1995, is regarded as one of the outstanding musicians of her generation.

She is a regular international guest at the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, the Mariinksy Theater in St. Petersburg, the Tonhalle Zurich, the Barbican Centre in London, the Konzerthaus Berlin, the Heidelberger Frühling, the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival and the Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.

As a soloist she performs with orchestras such as the hr-Sinfonieorchester, the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, the NDR Radiophilharmonie Hannover, the Dortmunder Symphoniker and the Bochum Symphoniker.

In addition to first prizes at the International Steinway Competition in Hamburg and at the International Grotrian Steinweg Piano Competition in Braunschweig, she was awarded the 2012 Prätorius Music Prize of Lower Saxony.

In August 2013, she won the main and audience prizes at the TONALi Grand Prix in Hamburg. In 2015 she won first prize at the “Ton und Erklärung” competition in Frankfurt, and in October 2016 she won the Kissinger KlavierOlymp in Bad Kissingen.

In May 2017, her debut CD with works by Beethoven, Pr okofiev, Chopin and Denhoff was released by OehmsClassics, which was among others awarded an “Editor´s choice” by the Gramophone Magazine.

For the 2013/2014 season she was a scholarship holder of the Mozart Gesellschaft Dortmund, 2014 she received a scholarship of the Hans und Eugenia Jütting-Stiftung and since 2014 she is also a scholarship holder of the Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes.

At the age of 6 she began to learn the piano with Dr. Elena Levit, from 2007 to 2010 she was a student at the Institute for Early Encouragement of Musically Highly Gifted Students of the Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien Hannover. From 2008 to 2010 she was a student in Hannover in the piano classes of Dr. Elena Levit and Prof. Matti Raekallio, since 2010 she studies at the HMTMH in the piano class of Prof. Bernd Goetzke.

In 2016 Elisabeth Brauß was a scholarship holder of the Chamber Music Academy and returned in 2017 and 2018 as a fellow. In 2019 will be performing again in the festival.



David Fray

Having performed at the Heidelberger Frühling in 2016, David Fray comes back in 2018. Described as “Perhaps the most inspired, certainly the most original Bach player of his generation,” he maintains an active career as a recitalist, soloist and chamber musician worldwide. He has collaborated with leading orchestras and distinguished conductors such as Pierre Boulez, Semyon Bychkov, Christoph Eschenbach, Paavo Järvi , Kurt Masur, Riccardo Muti, Esa-Pekka Salonen and Yannick Nézet-Séguin. Orchestral highlights in Europe have included performances with the London Philharmonic, Royal Concertgebouw, Bayerische Rundfunk, Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, Deutsches Sinfonie Orchester, Mozarteum Salzburg, Orchestra del Teatro alla Scala, Orchestre de Paris, Orchestre National de France and Orchestre de l’Opéra national de Paris. David Fray made his US debut in 2009 with the Cleveland Orchestra which was followed by performances with the Boston Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, New York Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony and the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Recital debuts followed in Carnegie Hall, at the Mostly Mozart Festival in New York and the Chicago Symphony Hall.

Mr. Fray holds multiple awards including the prestigious German ECHO Klassik Prize for Instrumentalist of the Year and the Young Talent Award from the Ruhr Piano Festival. In 2008 he was named Newcomer of the Year by the BBC Music Magazine. At the 2004 Montreal International Music Competition, Mr. Fray received both the Second Grand Prize and the Prize for the best interpretation of a Canadian work.

An exclusive Warner Classics artist, David Fray recorded his first CD with works of Bach and Boulez to great critical acclaim. The disc was praised as the “best record of the year” by the London Times and Le Soir.

David Fray started taking piano lessons at the age of four. He furthered his studies with Jacques Rouvier at the National Superior Conservatory of Music in Paris where he currently resides.

Julian Bliss

Julian Bliss, one of the world’s finest solo clarinettists, has excelled as concerto soloist, chamber musician, jazz artist, and masterclass leader. Born in St Albans (UK), he began playing at the age of four. Julian moved to the United States to study at Indiana University and subsequently received lessons from Sabine Meyer in Germany.

His prodigious early career included performances at the prestigious Gstaad, Mecklenburg Vorpommern, Rheingau and Verbier festivals, and critically acclaimed debuts at London’s Wigmore Hall and New York’s Lincoln Center. He has appeared with many leading international orchestras, the London Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and the Academy of St Martin in the Fields among them.

Julian’s chamber music partners include Joshua Bell, Hélène Grimaud, Steven Isserlis and Steven Kovacevich. In 2012 he launched the Julian Bliss Septet with dates at Wigmore Hall, Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club and the Concertgebouw

Mike Svoboda

Mike Svoboda – born 1960 on the island of Guam, grew up in Chicago and came to Germany with the help of a BMI Award to Young Composers in 1982. His eleven years as trombonist with Karlheinz Stockhausen during the 80s and 90s proved to be of eminent importance for Svoboda’s musical development. Including the collaboration with Stockhausen and other composers such as Peter Eötvös, Helmut Lachenmann, Wolfgang Rihm, Martin Smolka, David Lang, and Frank Zappa, Svoboda has premiered over 400 works for trombone at festivals throughout the world.

Major festivals have invited him to be artist or composer-in-residence. Often involved in his works as a soloist or with his own Mike Svoboda Ensemble, he composes across the borders between popular and classical music, high culture and entertainment, combining – through the use of text and various musical styles – both traditional and avant-garde.

Numerous CDs, mainly for the WERGO label, document Svoboda’s art both as an interpreter and composer. In 2008 he was awarded the Praetorius-Prize for Innovation in Music from the German government, because of, according to the jury, the “influence and recognition his concepts and ideas have had on the development of music and its performance”.

Gabriela Montero

Gabriela Montero

In 2018 the pianist has been awarded the Music Award of Heidelberger Frühling.

Gabriela Montero’s visionary interpretations and unique compositional gifts have garnered her critical acclaim and a devoted following on the world stage. Anthony Tommasini remarked in The New York Times that “Montero’s playing had everything: crackling rhythmic brio, subtle shadings, steely power…soulful lyricism…unsentimental expressivity.”

Montero’s recent and forthcoming highlights include debuts with the San Francisco Symphony (Edward Gardner), New World Symphony (Michael Tilson Thomas), Yomiuri Nippon Symphony in Tokyo (Aziz Shokhakimov), Orquesta de Valencia (Pablo Heras-Casado), and the Bournemouth Symphony (Carlos Miguel Prieto), the latter of which will feature her as Artist-in-Residence for the 2019-2020 season. Montero also recently performed her own “Latin” Concerto with the Orchestra of the Americas at the Hamburg Elbphilharmonie and Edinburgh Festival, as well as at Carnegie Hall and the New World Center with the NYO2. Additional highlights include a European tour with the City of Birmingham Symphony and Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla; a second tour with the cutting edge Scottish Ensemble, this time with Montero’s latest composition Babel as the centrepiece of the programme; her long-awaited return to Warsaw for the Chopin in Europe Festival, marking 23 years since her prize win at the International Chopin Piano Competition; and return invitations to work with Marin Alsop and the Baltimore Symphony, Jaime Martin and the Orquestra de Cadaqués for concerts in Madrid and Barcelona, and Alexander Shelley and the National Arts Centre Orchestra of Canada.

Celebrated for her exceptional musicality and ability to improvise, Montero has performed with many of the world’s leading orchestras to date, including: the Royal Liverpool, Rotterdam, Dresden, Oslo, Vienna Radio, and Netherlands Radio philharmonic orchestras; the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, NDR Sinfonieorchester Hamburg, NDR Radiophilharmonie Hannover, Zürcher Kammerorchester, Academy of St Martin in the Fields, and Australian Chamber Orchestra; the Pittsburgh, Detroit, Houston, Atlanta, Toronto, Baltimore, Vienna, City of Birmingham, Barcelona, Lucerne, and Sydney symphony orchestras; the Belgian National Orchestra, Württembergisches Kammerorchester Heilbronn, and the Cleveland Orchestra, orchestra of the Komische Oper Berlin, and Residentie Orkest.

A graduate and Fellow of the Royal Academy of Music in London, Montero is also a frequent recitalist and chamber musician, having given concerts at such distinguished venues as the Wigmore Hall, Kennedy Center, Vienna Konzerthaus, Berlin Philharmonie, Frankfurt Alte Oper, Cologne Philharmonie, Leipzig Gewandhaus, Munich Herkulessaal, Sydney Opera House, Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Luxembourg Philharmonie, Lisbon Gulbenkian Museum, Manchester Bridgewater Hall, Seoul’s LG Arts Centre, Hong Kong City Hall, the National Concert Hall in Taipei, and at the Barbican’s ‘Sound Unbound’, Edinburgh, Salzburg, SettembreMusica in Milan and Turin, Lucerne, Ravinia, Gstaad, Saint-Denis, Violon sur le Sable, Aldeburgh, Cheltenham, Rheingau, Ruhr, Trondheim, Bergen, and Lugano festivals.

Montero is also an award-winning and bestselling recording artist. Her most recent album, released in autumn 2019 on the Orchid Classics label, features her own “Latin” Concerto and Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G Major, recorded with the Orchestra of the Americas in Frutillar, Chile. Her previous recording on Orchid Classics features Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 2 and her first orchestral composition, Ex Patria, winning Montero her first Latin Grammy® for Best Classical Album (Mejor Álbum de Música Clásica). Others include Bach and Beyond, which held the top spot on the Billboard Classical Charts for several months and garnered her two Echo Klassik Awards: the 2006 Keyboard Instrumentalist of the Year and 2007 Award for Classical Music without Borders. In 2008, she also received a Grammy® nomination for her album Baroque, and in 2010 she released Solatino, a recording inspired by her Venezuelan homeland and devoted to works by Latin American composers.

Montero made her formal debut as a composer with Ex Patria, a tone poem designed to illustrate and protest Venezuela’s descent into lawlessness, corruption, and violence. The piece was premiered in 2011 by the Academy of St Martin in the Fields. Montero’s first full-length composition, Piano Concerto No. 1, the “Latin“ Concerto, was first performed at the Leipzig Gewandhaus with the MDR Sinfonieorchester and Kristjan Järvi, and subsequently recorded and filmed with the Orchestra of the Americas for the ARTE Konzert channel.

Winner of the 4th International Beethoven Award, Montero is a committed advocate for human rights, whose voice regularly reaches beyond the concert hall. She was named an Honorary Consul by Amnesty International in 2015, and recognised with Outstanding Work in the Field of Human Rights by the Human Rights Foundation for her ongoing commitment to human rights advocacy in Venezuela. She was invited to participate in the 2013 Women of the World Festival at London’s Southbank Centre, and has spoken and performed twice at the World Economic Forum in Davos-Klosters. She was also awarded the 2012 Rockefeller Award for her contribution to the arts and was a featured performer at Barack Obama’s 2008 Presidential Inauguration.

Born in Venezuela, Montero started her piano studies at age four with Lyl Tiempo, making her concerto debut at age eight in her hometown of Caracas. This led to a scholarship from the government to study privately in the USA and then at the Royal Academy of Music in London with Hamish Milne.

Marc-André Hamelin

Pianist Marc-André Hamelin is known worldwide for his unrivalled blend of consummate musicianship and brilliant technique in the great works of the established repertoire, as well as for his intrepid exploration of the rarities of the 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries – in concert and on disc.

The coming season includes Mr. Hamelin’s return to Carnegie Hall for a recital on the Keyboard Virtuoso Series plus recitals in Montreal, Seattle, Berlin, Florence, Salzburg, Wigmore Hall, Istanbul, among others. Hamelin appears with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, the Los Angeles, Stuttgart and Moscow State Philharmonics, the Vancouver, Cincinnati, and Oregon Symphonies, and tours in Europe with the Amsterdam Sinfonietta.

He was a distinguished member of the jury of the 15th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition in 2017 where each of the 30 competitors performed Hamelin’s ‘Toccata on L’Homme armé’ which marked the first time the composer of the commissioned work was also a member of the jury. Although primarily a performer, Mr. Hamelin has composed music throughout his career; the majority of his works are published by Edition Peters.

Mr. Hamelin records exclusively for Hyperion Records. His most recent releases are a disc of Schubert’s Piano Sonata in B-Flat Major and Four Impromptus, a landmark disc of Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring and Concerto for Two Pianos with Leif Ove Andsnes, Morton Feldman’s For Bunita Marcus, and Medtner’s Piano Concerto No. 2 and Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 3 with the London Philharmonic Orchestra and Vladimir Jurowski.

He was honored with the 2014 ECHO Klassik Instrumentalist of Year (Piano) and Disc of the Year by Diapason Magazine and Classica Magazine for his three-disc set of Busoni: Late Piano Music and an album of his own compositions, Hamelin: Études, which received a 2010 Grammy nomination (his ninth) and a first prize from the German Record Critics’ Association.

Mr. Hamelin makes his home in the Boston area with his wife, Cathy Fuller. Born in Montreal, Marc-André Hamelin is the recipient of a lifetime achievement award from the German Record Critic’s Association. He is an Officer of the Order of Canada, a Chevalier de l’Ordre du Québec, and a member of the Royal Society of Canada.

Lisa Batiashvili

Georgian violinist Lisa Batiashvili has developed long-term relationships with some of the world’s leading orchestras, including the New York Philharmonic, Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich, Berlin Philharmonic and Vienna Philharmonic, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestre de Paris among many others. She regularly performs in venues such as Wigmore Hall, London; Concertgebouw, Amsterdam; Musikverein, Vienna; Philharmonie 2, Paris; and Tonhalle Zurich and works with notable conductors such as Paavo Järvi, Daniel Barenboim, Alan Gilbert, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Esa-Pekka Salonen and Daniel Harding. Gautier Capuçon, Valery Sokolov, Gérard Causse and Emmanuel Pahud are among her chamber music partners.

A student of Ana Chumachenko and Mark Lubotski, Lisa gained international recognition at age 16 as the youngest-ever competitor in the Sibelius Competition.

Lisa lives in Munich and plays a Joseph Guarneri “del Gesu” from 1739, generously loaned by a private collector.

Håkan Hardenberger

Håkan Hardenberger is the greatest trumpet soloist today. Alongside his phenomenal performances of the classical repertory, he is also held in high regard as a pioneer of significant and virtuosic new trumpet works.

Håkan Hardenberger performs with the world’s leading orchestras, including the New York Philharmonic, Boston Symphony, Wiener Philharmoniker, Swedish Radio Symphony, London Symphony, Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks and NHK Symphony Orchestra. Conductors he regularly collaborates with include Pierre Boulez, Alan Gilbert, Daniel Harding, Paavo Järvi, Ingo Metzmacher, Andris Nelsons, Esa-Pekka Salonen and David Zinman.

The works written for and championed by Hardenberger stand as key highlights in the repertory and include those by Sir Harrison Birtwistle, Hans Werner Henze, Olga Neuwirth, Arvo Pärt, Mark Anthony Turnage, and HK Gruber’s concerto »Aerial«, which has received in excess of 60 performances by Hardenberger.

Conducting is becoming an integral part of Håkan Hardenberger’s music making. He conducts orchestras such as BBC Philharmonic, St Paul Chamber Orchestra, Dresden Philharmonic, Northern Sinfonia, Malmo Symphony and Västerås Sinfonietta.

Håkan Hardenberger was born in Malmö, Sweden. He began studying the trumpet at the age of eight with Bo Nilsson in Malmö and continued his studies at the Paris Conservatoire, with Pierre Thibaud and in Los Angeles with Thomas Stevens. He is a professor at the Malmö Conservatoire.

Arcadi Volodos

Acclaimed as a “keyboard genius”, Arcadi Volodos is without a doubt one of the world’s finest and most prominent pianists. He first studied voice and conducting and did not begin serious training at the piano until 1987 at the St. Petersburg Conservatory. He pursued his studies further at the Moscow Conservatory with Galina Egiazarova, then in Paris and Madrid.

Since his New York debut in 1996, he has performed throughout the world in recital with many of the most eminent orchestras and conductors, including the Berlin Philharmonic, Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Munich Philharmonic, Boston Symphony, Chicago Symphony and New York Philharmonic. He regularly appears in recitals at the Berlin Philharmonie, Vienna’s Musikverein and the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées in Paris as well as in all the other important music centres in Europe and Asia.

Since his now historic Carnegie Hall recital debut in 1998 Sony Classical has issued a series of acclaimed CDs. The 2007 release “Volodos plays Liszt” was named an “Editor’s Choice” by Gramophone magazine, singled out as a Diapason d’Or and honoured with the annual ECHO-Klassik Award.

Nils Mönkemeyer

Mönkemeyer has been a professor at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Munich since 2011 – the same institution at which he himself studied. Previous tenures include a two-year professorship at the Carl Maria von Weber University of Music in Dresden, and an assistant professorship at the Reina Sofia College of Music in Madrid.

Nils Mönkemeyer works together with conductors such as Mario Venzago, Markus Stenz, Mark Minkowski, Michael Sanderling and Simone Young, performing internationally in London’s Wigmore Hall, Viennas Musikverein, Brussel’s Bozar, Berlin and Leipzig Gewandhaus, not to mention countless festival venues.

As an exclusive Sony Classical artist, he has brought out several critically acclaimed, awardwinning CDs in the last years, all of which have made their way into the German classical charts. The programmes of this and Mönkemeyer’s previous recordings encompass discoveries and first recordings of original viola literature ranging from the 18th century to modern pieces, as well as his own transcriptions.

Nils Mönkemeyer has collaborated with such conductors as Sylvain Cambreling, Elias Grandy, Christopher Hogwood, Cornelius Meister, Mark Minkowski, Michael Photo: Irène Zandel Sanderling, Clemens Schuldt, Karl-Heinz Steffens, Markus Stenz, Mario Venzago and Simone Young, including orchestras like the Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich, Helsinki Philharmonic, Musiciens du Louvre, Berne Symphony Orchestra, Konzerthaus Orchestra Berlin, Staatskapelle Weimar, Bremen and Hamburg Philharmonic, Dusseldorf Symphony Orchestra, MDR and NDR Radio Orchestras and the Berlin Baroque Soloists.