Bertrand Chamayou

Bertrand Chamayou has mastered an extensive repertoire displaying striking assurance, imagination, artistic approach and remarkable consistency in his performances. He is a regular performer in venues such as the Théâtre des Champs Elysées, Lincoln Center, the Herkulessaal Munich and London’s Wigmore Hall. He has appeared at major festivals including New York’s Mostly Mozart Festival, the Lucerne Festival, Salzburg Festival, Edinburgh International Festival, Rheingau Musik Festival and Beethovenfest Bonn.

In the 2018/19 season he debuts with the Philharmonia Orchestra under Philippe Herreweghe, Orchestre symphonique de Montréal and François-Xavier Roth, Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra with Manfred Honeck, and Budapest Festival Orchestra under Robin Ticciati. Further highlights include his return to Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra’s season opening concert as well as a project with the Orchestra in April, and his residencies as a featured artist with Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, and Orchestre National de France.

Bertrand Chamayou has worked with orchestras including London and Rotterdam philharmonic orchestras, Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, hr-Sinfonieorchester, WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln, Orchestre de Paris, NHK Symphony Orchestra, Seattle Symphony Orchestra, Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra, The Cleveland Orchestra, Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia and Danish National Symphony Orchestra. Recent highlights have included his celebrated debuts with New York Philharmonic, Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich, Bamberger Symphoniker, Atlanta Symphony, Orchestre Symphonique de Québec and Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Chamayou collaborated with conductors such as Pierre Boulez, Leonard Slatkin, Sir Neville Marriner, Semyon Bychkov, Michel Plasson, Louis Langrée, Stéphane Denève, Ludovic Morlot and Andris Nelsons.

Chamayou is a regular chamber music performer, with partners including Renaud and Gautier Capuçon, Quatuor Ebène, Antoine Tamestit and Sol Gabetta. Following his successful performances at Lincoln Center’s Great Performers Series and Salzburg’s Easter Festival, this season sees him perform recitals at Paris Théâtre des Champs-Élysées, London’s Wigmore Hall, in Prague, Lucerne and on tour through Italy with Sol Gabetta.

Bertrand Chamayou has made a number of highly successful recordings, including a Naïve CD of music by César Franck, which was awarded several accolades including Gramophone’s Editor’s Choice. The only artist to win France’s prestigious Victoires de la Musique on four occasions, he has an exclusive recording contract with Warner/Erato and was awarded the 2016 ECHO Klassik for his recording of Ravel’s complete works for solo piano. The 2018/19 season sees release of his new recording of Camille Saint-Saëns piano concertos No.2 and 5 with the Orchestre National de France under Emmanuel Krivine.

Bertrand Chamayou was born in Toulouse; his musical talent was quickly noted by pianist Jean-François Heisser, who later became his professor at the Paris Conservatoire. He completed his training with Maria Curcio in London

Danish String Quartet

Frederik Øland, violin
Rune Tonsgaard Sørensen, violin
Asbjørn Nørgaard, viola
Fredrik Schøyen Sjölin, violoncello

Among today’s many exceptional chamber music groups, the Danish String Quartet continuously asserts its preeminence. The Quartet’s playing reflects impeccable musicianship, sophisticated artistry, exquisite clarity of ensemble, and, above all, an expressivity inextricably bound to the music, from Haydn to Shostakovich to contemporary scores. Their performances bring a rare musical spontaneity, giving audiences the sense of hearing even treasured canon repertoire as if for the first time, and exuding a palpable joy in music-making that have made them enormously indemand on main concert stages throughout the world.

Since its debut in 2002, the Danish String Quartet has demonstrated a special affinity for Scandinavian composers, from Nielsen, Hans Abrahamsen, Bent Sørensen and traditional Nordic folk music, alongside music of Mozart and Beethoven. The recipient of many awards and prestigious appointments, including the Borletti Buitoni Trust, the Danish String Quartet was named in 2013 as BBC Radio 3 New Generation Artists and appointed to the The Bowers Program (formerly CMS Two) at the Lincoln Center in NYC.

The group takes an active role in reaching new audiences through special projects. In 2007, they established the DSQ Festival, now in its 11th year, which takes place in an intimate and informal setting in Copenhagen. This October, the Danish String Quartet performed, over the course of six concerts, the complete Beethoven cycle of 16 string quartets. In 2016, they inaugurated a new concert series, Series of Four, which they both perform and invite colleagues —the Ebène Quartet, mandolin player Chris Thile, among others—to appear at the venerable Danish Radio Concert Hall. Concerts this season have ranged from a chamber version of the Fauré Requiem, a recital with violinist Augustin Hadelich and a world premiere of Bent Sørensen’s Dancers and Disappearance for string quartet and accordion.

The Danish String Quartet has received numerous citations and prizes, including First Prize in the Danish Radio Chamber Music Competition, the Vagn Homboe String Quartet Competition and the Charles Hennen International Chamber Music Competition in the Netherlands, as well as the Audience Prize at the Trondheim International String Quartet Competition in 2005. In 2009, the Danish String Quartet won First Prize in the 11th London International String Quartet Competition, now known as the Wigmore Hall International String Quartet competition, and return to the celebrated London concert hall frequently. The Quartet was the awarded the 2010 NORDMETALLEnsemble Prize at the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Festival in Germany, and in 2011, they received the Carl Nielsen Prize, the highest cultural honor in Denmark. Most recently, the Quartet received its first GRAMMY nomination in 2019, for the first release of its five-disc recording project, PRISM, on the ECM New Series label.

In addition to the subsequent recording releases for the PRISM recording project, future performance ventures include the full PRISM cycle at La Jolla Music Society over the span of five concerts in November 2019, and the complete Beethoven cycle at Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center in February 2020 and at the Schubert Club in St. Paul, MN in May 2020.

For four seasons, beginning in 2020/2021, the Danish String Quartet will begin a collaboration with four acclaimed composers – Bent Sørensen, Lotta Wennäkoski, Anna Thorvaldsdottir, and Thomas Adès. The four composers will compose works to complement and juxtapose four of Schubert’s greatest chamber works, the String Quartet in G Major, D. 887, String Quartet in D minor, D. 810 – “Death and the Maiden, ” String Quartet in A Minor, D. 804 “Rosamunde,” and String Quintet in D Major, D. 956. All the works will be premiered at Carnegie Hall, NYC and tour world wide. Future projects also include a musical investigation of William Heinesen’s ‘De fortabte spillemænd’, a ‘time based media’-project dealing with Ligetis music and how it has been used in Stanley Kubrick’s movies as well as several outreach initiatives in local musical centers in Denmark. *

Violinists Frederik Øland and Rune Tonsgaard Sørenson and violist Asbjorn Norgaard met as children at a music summer camp where they played soccer and made music together. As teenagers, they began the study of classical chamber music and were mentored by Tim Frederiksen of Copenhagen’s Royal Danish Academy of Music. In 2008, the three Danes were joined by Norwegian cellist Fredrik Schøyen Sjölin.

Alina Ibragimova

Performing music from baroque to new commissions on both modern and period instruments, Alina Ibragimova has established a reputation as one of the most accomplished and intriguing violinists of her generation. This is illustrated by her prominent presence at the BBC Proms since 2015: aside from concerto performances from the standard repertoire, her Proms appearances have included a concert with a baroque ensemble and two late-night Royal Albert Hall recitals featuring the complete Bach partitas and sonatas, for which The Guardian commented “The immediacy and honesty of Ibragimova’s playing has the curious ability to collapse any sense of distance between performer and listener”. In the 2018 Proms, Alina will give the World Premiere of the Rolf Wallin Violin Concerto with the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Edward Gardner.

Highlights among recent concerto engagements include debuts with the Boston Symphony, Montreal Symphony, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Sinfonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, Tokyo Symphony, Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony and returns with the London Philharmonic and the Chamber Orchestra of Europe. Alina has also toured extensively in Australia with the Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Tasmania symphony orchestras as well as with the Australian Chamber Orchestra.

Her long-standing duo partnership with pianist Cédric Tiberghien has featured highly successful cycles of the Beethoven and Mozart violin sonatas at the Wigmore Hall. Highlights among recent engagements included a three-week tour of Japan and Korea, extensive touring of North America and a Berlin debut recital at the Pierre Boulez Saal. In 18/19, the duo looks forward to debuts at the Konzerthaus Vienna and a return tour of Japan and Korea.

Alina is a founding member of the Chiaroscuro Quartet. Together they have toured extensively since 2005 and have become one of the most sought-after period ensembles.

Alina’s discography on Hyperion Records includes 15 albums ranging from Bach to Szymanowski and Ysaye. Her latest release featuring the complete Mozart Violin Sonata cycle with Cedric Tiberghien was referred to as “…A set that will become the modern reference recording…” by Gramaphone Magazine. The next release with Franck and Vierne’s Violin Sontatas is expected in Autumn 2018.

Born in Russia in 1985 Alina studied at the Moscow Gnesin School before moving with her family to the UK in 1995 where she studied at the Yehudi Menuhin School and Royal College of Music. She was also a member of the Kronberg Academy Masters programme. Alina’s teachers have included Natasha Boyarsky, Gordan Nikolitch and Christian Tetzlaff. Alina has been the recipient of awards including the Royal Philharmonic Society Young Artist Award 2010, the Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award 2008, the Classical BRIT Young Performer of the Year Award 2009 and was a member of the BBC New Generation Artists Scheme 2005-7. She was made an MBE in the 2016 New Year Honours List. Alina records for Hyperion Records and performs on a c.1775 Anselmo Bellosio violin kindly provided by Georg von Opel.

Cédric Tiberghien

Cédric Tiberghien is a French pianist who has established a truly international career. Performances last season include his debuts with the Berliner Philharmoniker, San Francisco Symphony, DSO Berlin and NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra. His solo recitals include London, Chicago and Tokyo, and with violinist Alina Ibragimova at the Vienna Konzerthaus and on tour to Japan and Korea. He will also perform at the Beethoven Haus in Bonn with viola player Tabea Zimmermann. In Spring 2019 the Théâtre des Bouffes du Nord (Paris) will present the premiere of Zauberland (Magic Land). This music theatre project, staged by Katie Mitchell, will see Schumann’s Dichterliebe performed alongside a new work by Bernard Foccroulle, setting a text by Martin Crimp. This work will be performed by Cédric and soprano Julia Bullock.

Highlights of the past seasons included perfomances with the London Symphony Orchestra and Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestras. He also undertook an extensive tour to Asia including solo and duo recitals, the latter with Alina Ibragimova. Their numerous performances that season included the Pierre Boulez Saal (Berlin) and Wigmore Hall (London). Cédric has a particularly strong relationship with the latter, where he a performed a total of five times during the season, in both solo and duo recital.

Cédric recently presented a major focus on the music of Bartok, culminating in a three-volume exploration of his solo piano works for the Hyperion label which has received huge critical acclaim. He has been awarded four Diapason d’Or, for his solo recordings on Hyperion. His solo discography also includes concerto and recital discs on Harmonia Mundi.

He is a dedicated chamber musician, with regular partners including violinist Alina Ibragimova, violist Antoine Tamestit and baritone Stéphane Degout. Cédric’s passion for chamber music is reflected in numerous recordings: his discography with Alina includes complete cycles of music by Schubert, Szymanowski and Mozart (Hyperion) and a Beethoven Sonata cycle (Wigmore Live).

Trio d’Iroise

Sophie Pantzier, violin
François Lefèvre, viola
Caspar Wedell, violoncello

The German-French Trio d’Iroise was founded by Sophie Pantzier, Francois Lefèvre and Johann Caspar Wedell in summer 2017 at the Rencontres musicales d’Iroise chamber music festival in Brittany.

In March 2018, after only a few months of rehearsals, they received the scholarship of the Deutsche Musik Wettbewerb, together with the admission to the Bundesauswahl Konzerte Junger Künstler (German choice concerts of young artists) and the special prize of the Marie-Luise Imbusch Foundation in Lübeck.

THe repertoire includes not only the famous classics of string trio literature, but also the lost, the unknown and new compositions. Francois Lefèvre is in regular contact with the surviving relatives of unknown composers. In addition, arrangements of traditional Syrian music for Syrian musicians (oud, kanun and percussion) and string trio were created in collaboration with the arranger Malte Schiller.

Since October 2018, the trio has been studying chamber music at the Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien Hannover with Prof. Oliver Wille.

Sophie Pantzier and François Lefèvre are members of the NDR Radiophilharmonie, Caspar Wedell is solo cellist of the ensemble reflektor.

Busch Trio

Mathieu van Bellen, violin
Ori Epstein, violoncello
Omri Epstein, piano

Named after the legendary violinist Adolf Busch, this piano trio has emerged as one of the leading young piano trios, receiving enthusiastic responses from audiences and critics internationally. Omri Epstein “the group’s marvellously sensitive pianist”, Mathieu van Bellen, whose “silvery gleam darted eloquently”, and Ori Epstein, with whom “you felt in the grip of a warm hug”, have all won prizes in solo international competitions. Brought together by a shared deep passion for chamber music and inspired by Mathieus possession of the “ex-Adolf Busch” G.B. Guadagnini violin (Turin, 1783), they have been recognized for their achievements and their playing with “incredible verve”. Since its formation in London in 2012 the trio has developed an extensive performing schedule across Europe’s leading concert halls and festivals. Their recent Wigmore Hall appearance was received to critical acclaim, The Times commenting: “…what impressed most was the group’s effortless musicianship and unity of thought and attack. The threesome even seemed to be breathing in synch.”

In 2016, the trio released their debut CD on French record label Alpha Classics of Dvorak’s trios to critical acclaim, receiving a 5-stars review in the Diapason magazine and remarked upon by the Gramophone as: “…the youthful Busch Trio can boast one of the most notable features of their namesake: a pooled decision to put the music, and only the music, first.” The CD is part of a 4-CD project of the complete chamber music for piano and strings by Dvorak. This and the subsequent two CDs, featuring the piano quartets and quintets, were selected by stations selected as CD of the week by several radio stations across Europe. This helped the trio win the 2016 Kersjesprijs, the Netherlands’ premier chamber music award.

Winners of the 2012 Royal Overseas League Competition, the trio went on to win several prizes at international competitions in Germany, UK and Italy, receiving guidance from distinguished artists such as Eberhard Feltz, Andras Schiff and the Artemis Quartet. As part of their development, the trio were based at the Queen Elisabeth Music Chapel in Brussels, where they were the trio in residence.

Recent seasons included a tour of China, Germany, France and the US, where their performance at the Phillips Collection was remarked upon by the Washington Post as possessing ‘remarkable maturity’. The trio often collaborate and most notably performed Beethoven’s Triple Concerto with the Warsaw Symphony Orchestra and Karina Canellakis and in concert with musicians such as Michael Collins, Bruno Giuranna, Gregor Sigl as well as Miguel da Silva, with whom they also recorded. Dvorak’s piano quartets CD was hailed by the Sunday Times as “an outstanding disc”.

They frequently perform on all major radio stations in Europe and next season’s highlights will include a return to Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw, a tour of the US and the release of the complete Box-set of their Dvorak project.

Signum Quartett

Florian Donderer, violin
Annette Walther, violin
Xandi van Dijk, viola
Thomas Schmitz, violoncello

The Signum Quartet has made its mark (lat. signum) on the international quartet scene by virtue of its energetic and lively interpretations, and has established itself as one of today’smost exciting ensembles of its generation.

Intensive studies with the Alban Berg Quartet, Artemis Quartet and the Melos Quartet, as well as collaborations with György Kurtág, Walter Levin, Alfred Brendel, Leon Fleisher and Jörg Widmann have characterised the artistic development of the Signum Quartet, a laureate of numerous awards, among others Premio Paolo Borciani and London International String Quartet Competition. The quartet has enjoyed support from Bayer Kultur as part of its stART cultural programme and as ensemble of the BBC Radio 3 New Generation Artists scheme.

Chamber music partners of the quartet include Jörg Widmann, Elisabeth Leonskaja, Leonard Elschenbroich, Alexander Krichel, Adrian Brendel, Christian Ihle Hadland, Eckart Runge, Nicolas Altstaedt, Mark Simpson, Carolin Widmann and the actor Dominique Horwitz.

The quartet has performed throughout their native Germany including at the Berlin Philharmonie and Konzerthaus, Laeiszhalle Hamburg, Liederhalle Stuttgart, Frankfurt, Philharmonie Essen and Gewandhaus Leipzig and abroad: Wigmore Hall and Cadogan Hall London, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Philharmonie de Luxembourg, as well as venues across Finland, Norway, Switzerland, France and at the Harvard Musical Association in Boston. It has appeared also at music festivals including the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival, Rheingau Music Festival, Cheltenham Music Festival, Aldeburgh, BBC Proms, and Aix-en-Provence. Performances of Bruno Mantovani’s 3rd string quartet which he composed for the Signum Quartet were given in Vienna, Luxembourg and Frankfurt. Lately the quartet performed together with Nils Mönkemeyer in Hamburg, in Cologne with Paul Watkins (Emerson String Quartet) and with Daniel Ottensamer in Frankfurt as well as the Bonner Beethoven-Haus. Future concerts will bring the quartet amongst others to Concertgebouw and the biennale in Amsterdam, to Madrid, Monte Carlo, once again to Cologne, Frankfurt, to the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg and to Wigmore Hall London.

In 2009, the Signum Quartet began recording for Capriccio Vienna and their first release – a CD of quartets by Ludwig Thuille – was awarded the Supersonic in Luxemburg, which they followed in 2012 with a recording of movements by Schubert, Rihm, Wolf, Ives and Orff. Their third Capriccio recording ‘No.3’, released in May 2013, presents quartets by Bartók, Schnittke and Berg, and was awarded the International Classical Music Award’s 2014 as ‘Best Chamber Music Recording’. A CD called “soundescapes” with works by Ravel, Debussy and Adès has been released in 2015. A recording of Brahms’ Hungarian Dances featuring Nils Mönekemeyer followed in the same year (Sony) and the latest CD is called “Alla czeca” (Suk, Schulhoff, Dvorak) (Capriccio). A new Schubert CD “From Afar” has just been released on the label Pentatone.

The Signum Quartet has launched a project called #quartweet which invites composers of all ages and abilities to tweet them a short quartet of 140 notes or less on Twitter. Composers like Bruno Mantovani, Sebastian Currier, Konstantia Gourzi, Caroline Shaw, Julian Grant und Steven Mackey and many more already participated. At the Signum Quartet’s concerts now their #quartweets can be heard offline as well and of course for the year 2020 there will be #BEEtweets!

Quartetto di Cremona

Cristiano Gualco, violin
Paolo Andreoli, violin
Simone Gramaglia, viola
Giovanni Scaglione, violincello

Since its formation in 2000, the Quartetto di Cremona has established a reputation as one of the most exciting chamber ensembles on the international stage. Regularly invited to perform at the most important festivals and concert seasons across Europe, North and South America, and the Far East, the Quartet has garnered universal acclaim from critics and audiences alike for its high level of interpretive artistry.

Awarded with the BBT Fellowship in 2005, the Quartetto di Cremona is the recipient of the second “Franco Buitoni Award” (2019), in recognition of their contribution in promoting and encouraging chamber music in Italy and throughout the world.

The complete Beethoven string quartets recordings have been recently released for Audite. All the volumes attracted high levels of acclaim in the international press, winning several prizes (Echo Klassik 2017 and ICMA 2018, among the others) and with the Quartetto di Cremona being unanimously considered the true heir of the great Quartetto Italiano. A new album dedicated to Schubert will be released in April 2019, including the String Quintet in C major with cellist Eckart Runge (Artemis Quartet) and the String Quartet “Der Tod und das Mädchen”.

They regularly collaborate with numerous artists of international renown, including Lawrence Dutton, Eckart Runge, Andrea Lucchesini, David Orlovsky, Edicson Ruiz, Aaron Pilsan and the Emerson String Quartet.

Frequently invited to present master classes across Europe and the United States, since autumn of 2011 the Quartet was assigned the professorship at the prestigious “Walter Stauffer Academy” in Cremona (String Quartet Advanced Master).

The Quartetto di Cremona is kindly supported by the Kulturfonds Peter Eckes (Mainz) with four fabulous Italian instruments:

Cristiano Gualco – violin G.B. Guadagnini “Cremonensis”, Torino 1767 Paolo Andreoli – violin
Paolo Antonio Testore, Milano ca. 1758 Simone Gramaglia – viola
Gioachino Torazzi, ca. 1680 Giovanni Scaglione – cello
Dom Nicola Amati, Bologna 1712

The ensemble is ambassador for the “Friends of Stradivari” international project and it has been the first Italian string quartet recipient of a long term loan of the Stradivarius “Paganini Quartet” by the Nippon Music Foundation (Tokyo). The Quartet is also testimonial for Thomastik-Infeld Strings.

In November of 2015 they were awarded honorary citizenship of the city of Cremona.

Navarra String Quartet

Magnus Johnston, violin
Marije Johnston, violin
Sascha Bota, viola
Brian O’Kane, violoncello

Formed in 2002, the Navarra String Quartet has built an international reputation as one of today’s most dynamic and poetic string quartets. Selected for representation by the Young Classical Artists Trust (YCAT) from 2006 to 2010, they have been awarded the MIDEM Classique Young Artist Award and a Borletti-Buitoni Trust Fellowship. They have appeared at venues including the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Royal Festival Hall, Wigmore Hall, Sydney Opera House, Lincoln Center, Luxembourg Philharmonie, Berlin Konzerthaus, the Laeiszhalle in Hamburg, at international festivals such as Rheingau, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Aix-en-Provence and Bergen, and further afield in Russia, the USA, China, Korea, Australia and the Middle East.

Highly-acclaimed recordings include Haydn’s The Seven Last Words for Altara Records, a disc of music by Joseph Phibbs for NMC Records, and a disc of Pēteris Vasks’ first three String Quartets for Challenge Records, which they recorded whilst working closely with the composer himself. The recording was described by critics as “stunning”, “sensational” and “compelling”, and was nominated for the prestigious German Schallplattenkritik Award.

The Quartet plays on a Hieronymus II Amati violin, a Jean-Baptistery Vuillaume violin (kindly loaned to Marije by a generous sponsor through the Beares International Violin Society), and a Grancino cello made in Milan in 1698, generously on loan from the Cruft – Grancino Trust which is administered by the Royal Society of Musicians.

Callisto Quartet

Paul Aguilar, violin
Rachel Stenzel, violin
Eva Kennedy, viola
Hannah Moses, violoncello

The Callisto Quartet brings together four passionate musicians who share a love for chamber music. Highlights of their achievements include the top prize at the 2018 Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition, the grand prize of the 2018 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition and prizes at the 2018 Wigmore Hall International String Quartet Competition. Besides serving as the Graduate String Quartet in Residence at the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University the quartet was invited to study with Günter Pichler (Alban Berg Quartet).

Their primary mentors include Si-Yan Darren Li, Peter Salaff, and Gerhard Schulz. They have also worked with the Brentano, Cavani, and Emerson Quartets. Other activities include serving as faculty and giving masterclasses at numerous places including the Bravo International Chamber Music Workshop, University of Central Florida, Midwest Young Artists Conservatory, and the CIM Preparatory Division.

The quartet has performed in many renowned chamber music festivals such as the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, the McGill International String Quartet Academy, the Juilliard String Quartet Seminar, and the Robert Mann String Quartet Institute. Highlights of their recent performances include collaborations with cellist David Geringas and pianist Gilles Vonsattel, as well as their New York City debut on the Schneider Concert Series. The year of 2019 includes performances at the Ravinia Festival as well as collaborations with Frank Cohen and John Novacek.