27. GUITAR FESTIVAL MIKULOV 20137. - 13. 7. 2013 DUO GRUBER & MAKLAR, ENSEMBLE VIVANTE, ESCUALO KVINTET, GUITAR4MATION, PAUL GALBRAITH, GORAN KRIVOKAPIĆ, MARCO SOCÍAS, ROLF LISLEVAND
Rostislav Coufal graduated from the Conservatory of Pardubice where he studied classical guitar with Stanislav Juřica and František Zima. Currently he is teaching classical guitar at the Art School Na Střezině in Hradec Králové. Since 1997 he has been working with various guitar orchestras.
In 2003 he founded Bohemian Guitar Orchestra and until 2012 he was its conductor and artistic director. For this orchestra he has made a lot of transcriptions of the music by Antonio Vivaldi, Johann Sebastian Bach, Mauro Giuliani, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Gioachino Rossini, Antonín Dvořák, Aram Chačaturjan, Astor Piazzolla. Since 2007 he has been a conductor of the Mikulov Philharmony at the internation guitar festival Mikulov.
As a guitarist he has played in the bands of various musical genres (folk, rock, grunge, country, southern rock).
Christian Gruber and Peter Maklar have been one of the leading duos in the international guitar-scene for over 20 years. They have worked together as a guitar duo since 1985. Their international career began when GRUBER & MAKLAR won first prize at the International Contest for Guitar Duos in Montélimar (France) in 1991.
GRUBER & MAKLAR have given numerous concerts in nearly all European countries, as well as in Mexico, Chile, Martinique, Canada, USA, Russia, Japan and South-Corea.
They have performed in renowned concert halls, such as the "Manhattan School of Music" in New York, the "Tschaikowsky Philharmonic Orchestra Hall" in Moscow,
the "Gendai Guitar Hall" in Tokyo, and the "Concertgebouw" on Amsterdam.
The magazine "Guitar Review" wrote about their concert at the Manhattan School of Music in December 2000: "...Their technique is spectacular, their musical understanding cannot be overstated, their ensemble with each other is outstanding and, as they proved in a magnificent evening of music on December 7th at the Manhattan School of Music a part of the Augustine Guitar Series, they deserve to be recognized as one of the finest guitar duos in the world."
Besides their duo playing Christian Gruber and Peter Maklar also collaborate with other artists such as the Japanese mezzo-soprano Tomoko Nakasugi, the internationally renowned guitarists Tilman Hoppstock and Dimitri Illarionov, the Amadeus Guitar Duo, the Oboist Christoph Hartmann (Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra) or the violinist Key Märkl (Symphonic Orchestra of Bavarian Broadcast).
Various composers including Dusan Bogdanovic, Wulfin Lieske, Enjott Schneider, Atanas Ourkouzounov and Paolo Devecchi have written for the duo.
Eight CD Recordings with Classical -, Spanish -, South-American- and contemporary literature, as well as numerous editions of their own transcriptons (available from the publisher DOBERMAN-YPPAN, Canada) give evidence of the duo´s skills.
Ensemble Vivante has quickly become recognized as an exciting new presence in the world of early music. Its unique sound results from an original combination of musicians: tenors Belgian Tore Tom Denys and American Erik Leidal sing with four Austrian instrumentalists. The array of instruments played by Christopher Dickie (theorbo, Baroque guitar, colascione), Anne Marie Dragosits (harpsichord, organ), Daniel Pilz (viola da gamba, Baroque guitar) and Reinhild Waldek (Baroque harp, recorder, viola da gamba) produces a vast range of musical environments in which to place the singularly homogenous sound of the tenors' lyric voices.
Vivante's unusual formation enables the ensemble to devote special attention to the tenor duet. This form of composition flourished in Italy during the first half of seventeenth century and spread quickly throughout Europe's courts. Combining the expressive strengths of both solo and choral writing, the tenor duet became a popular sub-genre of the vocal music of its era. Examples can be found in both dance tunes and sacred music, in the madrigal as well as in the lighter genre of the villanelle.
Anne Marie Dragosits - harpsichord, organ; Tore Tom Denys- tenor; Daniel Pilz - viola da gamba, Baroque guitar; Erik Leidal - tenor; Reinhild Waldek - Baroque harp, recorder; Christopher Dickie - theorbo, Baroque guitar, colascione.
Ensemble Vivante devotes special attention to the performance of lesser known and nearly-forgotten works written by composers of the era's most captivating music. While composers such as Monteverdi and Frescobaldi are well-known today, many pieces featured by the ensemble are written by composers who have been rendered insignificant over the course of time. In many cases, this has amounted to a rediscovery of works rarely, if ever, heard beyond the time of their composition. Indeed, the ensemble's debut recording of Giovanni Girolamo Kapsperger's sixth book of villanellas (printed in Rome in 1632) would most likely have remained relegated to the archives had Vivante not investigated it. The CD appeared in 2006 in the Austrian Broadcasting Corporation's early music series (ORF Edition Alte Musik). Their second CD, Alla Luce, featuring rare duets from Frescobaldi, Strozzi, Rovetta, Monteverdi and Kapsperger, was released by the ORF in September of 2009.
Vivante was awarded the first prize at the Johann-Heinrich Schmelzer Competition at the International Baroque Music Festival in Melk 2005. The ensemble has appeared at Vienna's most prestigious early music festival Resonanzen at the Konzerthaus, and is heard regularly on international broadcasts. Recently vivante has been well-received at the Festival Itineraire Baroque in the Dordogne region of France as well as at the Summer Festival in Brunnenthal, and made its debut at the Festival van den Vlaanderen in Bruges, Belgium.
Jakub Jedlinský - accordion/bandoneon, Vít Chudý - violin, Petr Beneš - guitar, Ivan Vokáč - piano, Jan Prokop - double bass
Escualo quintet is an ensemble founded in 2011 focused on the interpretation of Tango argentino style in all its forms. At the concerts the audience can hear both classical tango and Tango nuevo, whose founder is the Argentinian composer Astor Piazzolla. Apart from the South American music the quintet also performs gypsy jazz and new musette, the popular French styles.
The Escualo’s array of instruments is identical with that of Astor Piazzolla Quintet. Its members are great artists who have cooperated with prestigious ensembles in the Czech Republic and abroad.
Paul Galbraith is internationally renowned as one of the foremost guitarists of our time. His revolutionary approach to guitar, allied to the searching depth of his interpretations, have made him an instantly recognizable figure in the world of Classical Music.
Paul plays a unique 8-string guitar, which he developed in 1993 together with legendary luthier, David Rubio. Rubio's design departed from the established format, through borrowing a radical asymmetrical stringing system from the 'Orpharion', a renaissance instrument of the lute family. It was named the 'Brahms Guitar', due to its richness of sound and wide range.
On this instrument, Paul has recorded a series of highly acclaimed albums, starting with the music of Brahms (his Op. 21A piano variations), and continuing with a Haydn Sonata CD; 'French Impressions', with music by Debussy & Ravel; a DVD recital, with Britten's famous Nocturnal for guitar as the center-piece; and Bach's complete Solo-violin Sonatas & Partitas, which was nominated for a Grammy Award in 1998.
Paul's individual approach to guitar technique stems from an idea he had in 1984 to free the right arm from holding, or resting on, the instrument. The resulting freedom enables an unencumbered flow between movement and sound. Paul continued to develop and refine his new-found playing position until, by 1987, it had evolved into the cellist's posture he is associated with today.
Paul began concertizing in his late teens, having come to public attention in Great Britain through a series of televised competition successes. Asked by a member of the press after the 1981 Leeds Castle Segovia competition what he thought of Paul, who was awarded silver medal, 'Segovia raised his hand, and exclaimed: "Paul is magnificent. He will be a great artist"'.
Since the early nineties, Paul has toured the USA annually, and performed throughout the UK and the European Union, as well as in China, South America, Russia, Norway, Australia, Canada, India, etc. He also has appeared with several of the major orchestras and ensembles in Britain and Europe, such as: the BBC Orchestras, the Royal Philharmonic, the St Petersburg Quartet, the English Chamber Orchestra, the Halle, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, the European Chamber Orchestra, the Moscow Chamber Orchestra, and the Shanghai Quartet.
Christian Gruber (born 1965) passed his guitar studies in Augsburg under Helmut Hehl and in Heidelberg/Mannheim under Walter Schumacher-Löffler.
In 1985, together with Peter Maklar he founded the guitar duo Gruber & Maklar.
In 1991, the two musicians won the first price at the international contest for guitar duos in Montélimar/France, which has been the beginning of intensive concert activities in Germany and abroad. Live cuts at German broadcast stations like Hessischer Rundfunk and Bayerischer Rundfunk and eight CD publications until now give evidence of their artistic work. They continue cooperating with other artists like the guitarist Tilman Hoppstock or the mezzo-soprano Maria-Cecilia Toledo.
Christian Gruber is invited regularly as judge and teacher to take part in international guitar contests and festivals.
An exceptional ensemble
Guitar4mation is a guitar quartet based in Vienna, Austria, although the group’s members Michal Nagy, Petr Saidl, Martin Wesely and Martin Schwarz live as far apart as Poland, the Czech Republic and widely seperated regions of Austria. Therefore, describing the group as based in trains, cars and planes would probably be more accurate...
The four musicians meet regularly in different places to enthrall their audiences by presenting well known and lesser known music in their unique way, using the magical colours four guitars can create. Every one of Guitar4mation’s members adds his own individual musical experiences and stylistic expertise to enrichen the group’s repertoire.
A look back
Guitar4mation was founded in Vienna in 1993. The original ensemble consisted of Alexander Swete, Francis Montocchio, Michal Nagy and Martin Schwarz. The group was reconstructed in 2003 and has been playing with great success in Austria, Germany, Italy, Greece, Slovakia, Poland and the Czech Republic in its current 4mation.
Guitar4mationperformed at the Wiener Konzerthaus, at international guitar festivals such as Lockenhaus, Mikulov, Gdansk, Tychy, Wroclaw, Gevelsberg, Bad Aibling and did live recordings for the ORF and Polish radio stations. The 1996 debut album "From a Hidden Street" was produced by Polskie Nagrania Edition Warsaw. The recent CDs "pulse.sound.joy.heart." (2006) and "Sonada de Adios" (2010) were published by Gramola Vienna and have received enthusiastic international acclaim.
Guitar4mation’s repertoire encompasses modern music, arrangements of romantic, impressionistic and Spanish works, music from Latin America as well as jazz and pop. Original compositions - some of them written for and dedicated to Guitar4mation – and Guitar4mation’s unique arrangements are key elements of the groups ability to impress and delight its audiences.
Guitar4mation has a very dynamic way of playing not often encountered in classical guitar concerts, reaching from very delicate pianissimos to angrily buzzing strings. At the end of a recital, Guitar4mation may surprise you with unexpected bouts of slapstick, gently making fun of the sometimes all too serious music business. But you will have to come and see and hear this for yourselves...
Born in Mexico in 1978, he studied in Italy with maestros Paolo Pegoraro and Stefano Viola at the “Francisco Tárrega” International Guitar Academy at Pordenone and at the Conservatoires of Castelfranco Veneto and Udine. In 2005 he obtained the guitar diploma with the highest marks and in 2008 he obtained his specialization degree with honors. His dissertation on Johann Sebastian Bach’s Ciaccona was published by the musicological magazine “Il Fronimo” and by Farandola music publisher of Pordenone.
Amongst the numerous masterclasses in which he participated, most noteworthy are those held by Stefano Grondona, Carlo Marchione, Alberto Ponce, Pavel Steidl, Pablo Márquez and Oscar Ghiglia. Furthermore he attended early music seminars with harpsichordists Ilario Gregoletto, Robert Hill and Richard Lluby.
He has offered concerts, conferences, seminars and masterclasses in Mexico, Italy, Spain, Slovenia, Croatia, Austria and the Czech Republic and since 2006 teaches at the “Francisco Tárrega” Guitar Center at Pordenone.
He is a member of the Trio Nahual, with which he took part in numerous international guitar and chamber music competitions gathering several acknowledgements, such as eleven first prizes. In 2007 with the trio he obtains Merit Diplomas from the “Francisco Tárrega” Guitar Academy and the Accademia Musicale Chigiana of Siena, granted by Oscar Ghiglia. Moreover with this ensemble, in 2008 he performs in the world premiere of Marco De Biasi’s Concert for Three Guitars and Orchestra, engaged by the Pordenone Guitar Festival. He performs on a guitar made by Italian luthier Marco Bortolozzo.
Born in Vienne in 1988, at the age of 6 he starts his guitar career with the help of the professor Raphael Vaccaro. Later on he enters the National Conservatory of Lyon where he undertakes his studies with the well-known Peruvian artist and professor Jesus Castro finalizing them with a gold medal for unanimity. He after continues gaining more knowledge in the Real Superior Conservatory of Music where he obtained his diploma with honors.
At present his is developing his career at the Mozarteum of Salzburg as well as at the Klagenfurt Conservatory (Austria) in Marco Tamayo’s class.
In addition to this, he regularly receives advice from Judicael Perroy in Paris.
He has also received lectures from Eduardo Fernández, Alirio Díaz, José Miguel Moreno, René Bartoli, Ricardo Gallén, Ignacio Rodes, Gerard Abiton, José Luís Rodrigo, Hubert Käppel and Leo Brouwer.
He has been given a scholarship by the Filamonica Society of Lyon for doing the “Music in Compostela” course. He has won the first award for unanimity in Cezeriat, a second award won for unanimity in the Bartoli contest as well as the grant-award Hazen-Hosseschruders in the International meeting “City of Majadahonda”
He has been graduated with honors from the festival Andrés Segovia, where he won the Segovia Prize of the Music Festival in Compostela, the second prize in the contest of Elche and the first prize in the youth contest José Tomas de Petrer in 2009. In 2010 he wins the first professional competition prize “José Tomas”, Fiuggi and the first contest of Seville as well as the regional and national contests and lastly the European final which the Lion's Club organizes.
In 2012 he is a laureate and get a scholarship from Banque Populaire des Alpes and in the same year he won the first prize of Pittaluga Competition.
He has several recordings for the French television and has performed in cities like Lyon, Santiago de Compostela, Budapest, Marrakech, Salzburg, Bologna, Madrid, New York and Paris.
Born in 1987, in Ubonratchathani province, Ekachai Jearakul started playing the classical guitar when he was thirteen years old. In 2003 he was awarded a scholarship to study at the College of Music at Mahidol University where he majored in classical guitar. He studied with Mr. Worakarn Sangsomboon, Dr. Paul Cesarczyk and many other fine teachers at the University. He later completed and graduated his Bachelor Degree in Classical Guitar Performance with first class honors in 2010. During this time he also attended numerous master classes where he met internationally renowned guitarists including Carlo Domeniconi, Alvaro Pierri, Scott Tennant, Shinji Fukuda, William Kanengiser, Pavel Steidl, Katona Twins and many others.
In the fall of 2010 he received a scholarship to complete a Master Degree in Classical Guitar Performance at the University Mozarteum in Salzburg (Austria) with Professor Mathias Seidel and Marco Tamayo.
Ekachai has performed solo concerts in Thailand and many other countries around the world including, China, France, Korea, Russia, Greece, Japan, England, Italy, Germany and USA. He has also performed as a soloist with The International Orchestra of Italy, The Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra, The Unity Philharmonic Orchestra, The Thailand Philharmonic Orchestra, The Ukraine Philharmonic Orchestra, The National Ensemble of Soloist “Kiev Camerata” Ukraine, The Princess Galyani Vadhana Institute Orchestra, The Orquesta Sinaloá de los Artes in Culiacan (Mexico), The Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra.
He has also won many International Guitar Competitions including:
- 1st prize of International Guitar Competition Paganini in Italy (2012)
- 1st prize of International Guitar Competition J. K. Mertz in Slovakia (2012)
- 1st prize of International Guitar Competition Luys Milan in Spain (2011)
- 1st prize of International Guitar Competition in Deajeon, South Korea (2010)
- 1st prize of International Guitar Competition in Culiacan, Mexico (2010)
- 1st prize of International Music Competition in Rome, Italy (2010)
- 1st prize of International Guitar Competition in Paris, France (2010)
- 1st prize of International Guitar Competition in Rust, Austria (2010)
- 1st prize of International Guitar Competition in Berlin, Germany (2008)
- 1st prize of International Guitar Competition in Singapore (2008)
- 1st prize of International Guitar Competition in Russia (2007)
- 1st prize of International Guitar Competition in Thailand (2003)
- 2nd prize of International Guitar Competition “Guerrero” in Spain (2012)
- 2nd prize of International Guitar Competition in Alessandria, Italy (2012)
- 3rd prize of International Guitar Concerto Competition “Joann Falletta” (2012)
Goran Krivokapic, born 1979, is one of the leading guitarists of the new, young international guitar scene. The reasons for this are not only his technical virtuosity, which sets new standards, but also his characteristical interpretation of old and new repertoire.
Apart from winning eighteen international competitions, he received several awards at the annual "International Guitar Convention in Alessandria”, Italy: 2005 as the best young guitarist of the year and 2006 for his debut CD "Best CD of the Year".
At age 14 he won his first international competition, but his breakthrough came in 2004 as winner of the two most prestigious guitar competitions in North and South America ("Guitar Foundation of America" in Montreal, Canada, and "Dr. Luis Sigall International Competition of Musical Performance" in Viña del Mar, Chile). Since then he has performed all over the world and plays as a soloist in the most prestigious halls such as the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Tchaikovsky Hall in Moscow, Lubkowitz Palace in Vienna, Auditorio Conde Duque in Madrid...
As an artist, lecturer and adjudicator, he is a frequent guest at most important international festivals.
Goran Krivokapic's musical focus is on the development of new works for classical guitar, mainly through making his own transcriptions from the Baroque and Classical works, but also collaborating with contemporary composers.
His premiered recordings include "Sonata 2" for guitar and "Sonate Printaniere" for guitar and piano by D. Bogdanovic, "Rapsodia Notturna" for guitar and piano by H. Hofmeyr, Sonata wq 132 by C. P. E. Bach, Sonata XVI:33 by J. Haydn.
Since 2011 he heads a class at the department of post-graduate studies at the Koblenz International Guitar Academy.
Since 2012 he is a guest lecturer for guitar and methodology at the Music Academy of East Sarajevo.
Rolf Lislevand was born in 1961 in Oslo. From 1980 until 1984, he studied the classical guitar at the Norwegian State Academy of Music. In 1984, he entered the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis in Switzerland, which was then the most active early music centre in Europe. He studied there until 1987, under the guidance of Hopkinson Smith and Eugéne Dombois.
Since 1987, he has been living in Verona, Italy, where he has been trying to reconstruct an authentic way of performing Italian music from the first half of the 17th century. Living in close contact with an old civilization which was always as attentive to modernism as tradition, he strives for a combination of intuition and research to guide him towards a comprehensive concept of style and aestethics of Baroque music.
Rolf Lislevand’s solo-recordings are released by the French label Auvidis/Astrée. His first CD of music by the Italian-born lutenist Hieronymus Kapsberger received, along with glowing reviews, the French “Diapason d’Or de l’année 1994” award. The same year, the Kapsberger CD was voted the “Best Record of Music before 1650” at the MIDEM international music industry fair in Cannes and, in 1995, “Critic’s choice” of Gramophone.
In the past few years, Lislevand has expanded two aspects of his career: his work as a soloist and a teacher. At the Conservatoire National de Toulouse (France), he has been allowed to develop a didactic method for instruments of the lute family which were cut off from their tradition centuries ago. Since 1993, Rolf Lislevand has been a professor at the Staatliche Hochschule für Musik in Trossingen, Germany.
Born in 1964, studied guitar and piano at the Leopold Mozart Conservatory in Augsburg, Germany.
Following his artistic and teaching degrees he continued his education at the Heidelberg-Mannheim College of Music with Walter Schumacher-Löffler, and with master courses with Leo Brouwer, Alvaro Pierri, Tilman Hoppstock, the Assad brothers, and Angelo Gilardino.
Peter Maklar and Christian Gruber form the guitar duo Gruber & Maklar, which has been invited to concerts and music festivals worldwide. Among their awards is the 1991 first prize at the international competition for guitar duos in Montelimar, France. Numerous Radio and CD productions document the musician’s success. Peter Maklar has repeatedly acted as a juror at international guitar competitions, and was invited to teach at various guitar festivals.
Michał Nagy is a laureate of international guitar competitions in Fiuggi, Gdansk, Krakow and Tychy. He has been the holder of the Fundacja Kultury scholarship twice. He is the laureate of the Malopolska Region Ars Quaerendi 2010 award for outstanding actions for promotion and popularisation of culture. He has been a teacher at the Academy of Music in Krakow since 1997, since 2006 Doctor of Art. Since 2008 he has been the artistic director of summer guitar workshop in Lanckorona, in the vicinity of Krakow.
He gives performances both as a soloist and a chamber musician. He has performed at numerous music festivals (such as the Warsaw Autumn, Carintischer Sommer, Allegro Vivo, Kwaresencja, Gitarre Wien, the Wrocław Guitar Festival). He has worked with the National Philharmonic Orchestra, the Wrocław Vratislavia Chamber Orchestra, Concerto Avenna, Capella Bydgostiensis, Camerata Nova, Fresco Sonare and the Chopin Academia Orchestra. He has also performed together with the National Philharmonic Chamber Musicians, the Royal String Quartet and the Wiener Instrumentalsolisten band, and as a member of New Tango Bridge and New Art Ensemble. He is also the co-founder and a member of an international guitar quartet, Guitar4mation, specialising in performances of 20th and 21st century music, including a repertoire combining contemporary music and jazz.
Michał Nagy also performs duets with Marcin Stakowski, a guitarist, Robert Kabara, a violinist, an oboist, Arkadiusz Krupa, an accordionist and bandeonist, Klaudiusz Baran. The artist has made some solo recordings for Polish Radio and Television. He is the author of many guitar arrangements, both solo and with chamber orchestras, and also works as an editor for the Polskie Wydawnictwo Muzyczne. He also works with theatre music for the Juliusz Słowacki Theatre in Krakow and has recorded music for the following record companies: Sony Music (the 2002 Fryderyk award for the Piazzolla Tango record), Dux (nominated for the 2000 Fryderyk award for Micropiezas), Polskie Nagrania Edition and Gramola Vienna.
Prof. Thomas Offermann counts today as one of the most internationally regarded guitar pedagogues in Europe and further afield. As soloist, with orchestra and as member of the internationally acclaimed Duo Sonare, one of the outstanding guitar duos of recent times, he has toured in over forty countries worldwide and participated at the most prestigious Guitar Festivals. Numerous Radio and Television broadcasts, together with Eight internationally appraised CD recordings provide a worthy documentation of the quality of his work.
Through his work with Duo Sonare, Thomas Offermann opened new ground for the classical guitar repertoire with the adaption of music by such figures as Chick Corea, Frank Zappa and Mike Oldfield. Chick Corea himself praised these interpretations for “so much feeling and beauty”.
As Professor he currently teaches an International Master class at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater Rostock; he is Artistic Director of the International Guitar Academy Berlin. His experienced and sensitive manner of teaching the guitar have won him great reknown both at home and abroad. He is at present engaged in the publication of the "Integrative Guitar Technique" which has already been featured at prestigious institutions, guitar festivals and universities across the world, winning acclaim from both participants and peers alike.
In recent years Thomas Offermann has also been active as a conductor of guitar orchestras presenting works by Steve Reich, Roland Dyens, Carlo Domeniconi, Benjamin Verdery, Leo Brouwer and others; Carlo Domeniconi and Benjamin Verdery wrote works for larger Guitar Ensembles for him.
Danielle Ribouillault wrote on his teaching in Les Cahiers de la Guitare:
“As I entered the class, he was explaining how to use the notes to revive a phrase, and then you can hear how the phrase flourishes and starts to live. He guides the student towards a generous Rubato that lets the melody vibrate. He, who had played with such a musicality and mastery, knows how to transmit his live-giving esprit… A lot of students attended his class: clearly because something special happens with him during his passionate transmission of music, something essential and more intense than otherwise.”
Since 2010 Thomas Offermann is the D’Addario’s European Classical Guitar Representative.
Michael Parkinson was born in Yorkshire, England in 1952. He began learning to play the bassoon at the age of 12, and at 16 was selected for the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain. He went on to study the bassoon at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, where he had his first Alexander Technique lessons. On completing his musical studies in 1973 he joined the Orchestra of the English National Ballet, with whom he played for 12 years. During this time he enrolled in a 3-year training program to become an Alexander Technique Teacher. He qualified in 1979 and taught the AT in London alongside his musical career.
In 1985 Michael moved to Vienna to teach the AT at Dramatisches Zentrum Wien. From 1991-1996 he was a guest professor for the Alexander Technique at the University for Music and Performing Arts in Graz. In 1996 he established the Alexander Technique Teacher Training Centre in Vienna. In recent years he has given many AT workshops throughout the Czech Republic: in Prag, Brno, Olomouc, Kromeriz and Jesenik. He has been teaching at the GFM since 2004.
Many musicians like myself began to learn to play an instrument at an early age. We all wanted to play well hopefully as well as our teachers, or players we heard and admired. Our teachers and parents also wanted to see us progress very quickly and be successful. But as with learning many other skills in life such as writing, painting, sports etc. it was very easy for us and our teachers / parents to focus attention on the results and not so much on the way we achieved these results. Frederick Mathias Alexander (1869-1955) called this the “endgaining“ approach to learning.
The Alexander Technique is a method of helping people discover how they are using their bodies when performing an activity: for example walking, sitting and standing or indeed something more specialized like playing a musical instrument. One can learn with the help of an Alexander Teacher to recognize and reduce the unnecessary habitual tensions and interferences which not only hold up our technical progress, but may also cause us pain while playing. Because of the obvious benefits to performers, the Alexander Technique has been an integral part of the musical curriculum at many major musical institutions worldwide for the past 30 years, especially in Britain and the USA.
Petr Saidl studied at the Conservatory of Pardubice with S. Juřica and at the Hochschule Franz Liszt in Weimar with prof. Roland Zimmer, prof. Jürgen Rost and prof. Monika Rost. He undertook master classes with e.g. G. Crosskey, J. Duarte, H. Käppel, C. Cotsiolis, W. Lendle etc.
He was awarded prizes in numerous national and international guitar competitions. In 1990 he was placed on the premium document of the Czech Musical Fund. Since 1993 he has taught at the Conservatory of Pardubice, since 2007 he has been the head of the guitar department there. His students are prizewinners of prestigious national and international competitions. He cooperates with music publishing houses, he is regularly invited to take the chair of various guitar competition juries and he lectures at festival courses. In 2010 he became part of the D’Addario family.
He has given concerts across Europe, both as a soloist and as a player in various chamber ensembles, often with violist Milan Řehák, violinist Bohuslav Matoušek or as a member of guitar quartet “Guitar4mation”. He has made various recordings for the Czech radio, Radio ORF and TV ORF. He has released two solo CDs, then one CD with violist Milan Řehák and two with guitar quartet “Guitar4mation”.
He has been the director of a project “Guitar Kutná Hora”, which organizes The International Guitar Biennial in Kutná Hora, the festival Guitar Night and awards a prize The young guitarist of the year.
Borbála Seres was born in 1984 in Budapest. Her basic musical training she had received in Budapest under the direction of Prof. József Papp. From 1999-2004 she studied at the Leo Weiner Conservatory also with Prof. József Papp. In 2004 she continued her studies at the University for Music and Performing Arts Vienna with Prof. Alvaro Pierri and Prof. Ahmed Noor Baluch. In 2009 she was studying with Erasmus by Prof. Péter Katona at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Frankfurt. In 2011 she graduated with honours at the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna.
She has been participating successfully in national and international competitions since a young age. She won ﬁrst prize at the 12th International Biennial Guitar Competition in Kutná Hora at the age of 16. She has been participating in competitions in the highest age category since 2009 and won several prizes. Among other things, she won at the Forum Gitarre Wien in 2012 and at the World Guitar Competition in Serbia in 2010 the first place, 2 Place in Kutna Hora and especially the 3rd Place in the international guitar competitions in Rust in Austria, in Split, in Belgrade, as well as in Petrer and Coria in Spain. The works from her repertoire require a mastery of the art to the highest degree, both virtuosity and a lyrical expression.
Beside performing as a guitarist, she is engaged in the methodology of guitar-playing as well. She wrote her thesis on alternative practice methods: on the so called mental training and its practice on the guitar. She has been teaching and sharing her experiences at the Bartók Béla Music Secondary School in Budapest and at the Faculty of Music of the University of Szeged since 2012.
Martin Schwarz was born in Basel/Switzerland and lives in Austria. He studied at the Vienna Academy of Music with Prof. Walter Würdinger and Luciano Contini and twice received a price for special merits by the ministery of science and research. He participated in many masterclasses by David Russell, Hubert Käppel, Alvaro Pierri and Oscar Ghiglia. He performed as a soloist and chamber musician in Germany, Poland, the Czech Republic, Slowakia, Austria, Greece, Russia and Italy. His recordings of works by German - Indonesian composer Stefan Soewandi “Echoing Silence” (1997) and “Dewa” (1999) where published by Kreuzberg Records Berlin.
He is a founding member of “Guitar4mation”, with this ensemble he performed widely throughout Europe and recorded 3 CDs (1996 „From a Hidden Street“, 2006 „Pulse.Sound.Joy.Heart.“, 2010 „Sonada del Alma“) and also collaborated with Polish and Austrian Radio stations.
As a teacher he gave masterclasses and workshops about “Posture and Movement for Guitarists” and about “Arranging for Guitar” at international guitar festivals, at the Universities of Music in Vienna, Graz and Linz as well as for the Austrian music school associations. He works as a guitar teacher at the Albrechtsberger music school in Klosterneuburg, Austria. Since 2012, he also teaches the guitar ensemble at the University of Music in Vienna.
A main focus of his work is on arranging and composing for guitar, with a wide range of musical styles.
“His arrangements sound so good that you don’t miss the original.” (Süddeutsche Zeitung, Munich 1997).
Joaquín Rodrigo praised the CD “Elogio de la guitarra”, which includes some of his solo pieces and recorded by Marco Socías in 1997, as follows:
“A new recording of my guitar works is always a cause of satisfaction. But in the case of this young Spanish performer, that satisfaction becomes delight. Marco Socías offers a profound and emotional journey through some of my most emblematic works with genuine musicality and a powerful technique.”
Joaquín Rodrigo, January 1998
Born in Málaga (Spain) into a family of pianists, Marco Socías received his musical education in this city, and afterwards in many masterclasses and at the Musikhochschule Cologne (Germany). Among the most significant personalities for his development are Carmen Gallardo, Antonio Company, José Tomás, José Miguel Moreno, Hubert Käppel and David Russell.
He became at the age of 21 the youngest guitar professor in Spain, and has been awarded in some of the most prestigious international competitions, as the “Infanta Cristina” (Fundación Guerrero, Madrid) where he got the first prize, “Le Printemps de la Guitare” (Belgium) and Concorso Internazionale di Gargnano (Italy).
Marco Socías is regularly invited to renowned International Guitar Festivals and, besides his intense activity as a soloist around practically whole Europe, Near East, Japan, Korea, South America and USA, he performs very frequently in chamber groups and as soloist with orchestra. He has performed in important concert halls as Concertgebouw (Symphonic Hall, Amsterdam), Konzerthaus (Vienna), Auditorio Nacional (Madrid), Konzerthaus (Berlin), Philharmonie (Berlin) and Alte Oper (Frankfurt), and has played as a soloist with orchestras as the Radio Sinfonie-Orchester Berlin, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Orquesta Ciudad de Granada, Orquesta Sinfónica de Galicia and Orquesta Nacional de Cuba. Among the conductors he has performed with, are to be mentioned Sir Neville Marriner, Josep Pons, Víctor Pablo Pérez, Odón Alonso and Leo Brouwer.
Until now he has recorded eight Compact Discs: Giuliani’s guitar concerto Op.30, “Concerto Meditarraneo” for two guitars and orchestra by Carlo Domeniconi (together with the composer), a CD with Catalan music (Pujol, Llobet, Mompou), a selection of pieces by Joaquín Rodrigo, the “Álbum de Colien” (contemporary Spanish and Portuguese music), and Spanish songs (Falla, Lorca and Gerhard) with soprano Juanita Lascarro. Later on, solo guitar works by Joaquín Rodrigo for the label EMI, and the “Concierto de Aranjuez” and “Fantasía para un Gentilhombre” for Harmonia Mundi, with the Orquesta Ciudad de Granada conducted by Josep Pons. Recently he has recorded a Bach program with the Korean soprano Sumi Jo, for the label Deutsche Grammophon.
Italian composer Carlo Domeniconi has written for him the works “Incontro”, “Sonata, quasi una sinfonia”, and his Guitar Concerto n.13.
Nowadays Marco Socías lives in Málaga, and is professor at the Centro Superior de Música “Musikene” in the Basque Country (San Sebastián, Spain).
Jens Wagner completed his studies with Karl Scheit, one of the great pedagogues of modern guitar playing. Important impulses and high sensitivity he received through intensive study of the old music. As a soloist and together with the Duo Sonare he has toured in more than 40 countries and played on major festivals.
As an arranger he has enriched the guitar repertoire with works also from rock and pop music e.g. Mike Oldfield’s “Tubular Bells”, a milestone in the history of music, or guitar virtuoso John McLaughlin's compositions. You can find in his programs contrasting connections of different music styles performed on the 19th century guitar and the modern Spanish guitar.
As an experienced guitarist and lutenist Jens Wagner has a profound knowledge he passes on to his students. He teaches at the University of the Arts Bremen a master class with an international reputation and is regularly guest of national and international courses.
His professional articles about “posture and movement theory” and “filing technique for guitarists” have been published in several magazines. Jens Wagner guitar arrangements of works by Telemann and Haydn are published by Heinrichshofen and Trekel.
12 highly acclaimed CD recordings document his artistic work.
Martin Wesely was born in Hall in Tirol. After three years of guitar lessons in his childhood he started to discover music on his own. As the alpine music tradition does not feature the guitar very much he devoted himself to Country and Bluegrass music at the age of 13. Doc Watson became his first idol. Nevertheless his official education began at the age of 16 at the Tiroler Landeskonservatorium with Peter Heiß. In Innsbruck he formed the „Duo Chaotique“ with guitarist Mark Wood. After finishing his studies in Innsbruck he moved to Vienna to study with Prof. Konrad Ragossnig at the Universität für Musik und Darstellende Kunst, where he also received his concert diploma with distinction. In 1999 he lived one year in Paris to study with Alberto Ponce at the Ecole Normale de Musique et Danse de Paris. At numerous masterclasses was influenced by Alvaro Pierri.
As a member of the international guitarquartet „guitar4mation“, „Duo stringtango“ with violin player Florian Wilscher and performances with cello player Florian Eggner, chambermusic is a main activity. Furthermore he crosses borders with his „acoustic trio“. In own compositions and adaptations he discovers together with Helmut Sprenger on clarinet and Andreas Schiffer on percussions European-inspired jazz, Latin elements, as well as influences from both the avant-garde and classical styles. In his trio „Carlos Martin y sus Caballeros“ he plays all the music he likes and worked on but has not found its way to his classical or chambermusic programs. Besides his concert activity all over Europe he writes music for theater and audio dramas. He released several CDs and made various recordings for the Austrian Radio ORF, and Italian RAI. In 2007 he founded the concertseries „Saitenspiele“ in his hometown Hall in Tirol that presents the secrets of the acoustic guitar.
In 2010 he became part of the D’Addario family.