The 11th Trondheim Competition 21st - 25th September 2021, gathering six young quartets. This year we had a record of 41 applicants, and we are proud to present the TICC participants 2021: Animato Quartet, Arima Quartet, Belinfante Quartet, Quatuor Confluence, Erinys Quartet and NOVO Quartet!
Animato Quartet (NO/NL)
Inga Våga Gaustad, violin
Tim Brackman, violin
Elisa Karen Tavenier, viola
Pieter de Koe, cello
The Animato Quartet is widely considered to be one of the most promising young string quartets in the Netherlands with its members being praised for their passionate, spontaneous playing and their powerful on-stage presence. Founded in 2013, their programs contain a combination of classical music with inspiration from the abundant string quartet repertoire and contemporary compositions some of which have been especially composed for the ensemble. In 2014 the Animato Quartet received an award for ‘Artistic Excellence’ at the Brazilian ‘Festival International de Inverno de Campos do Jordao’, and was laureate of the Grachtenfestival CompetitionLater. In 2017 the quartet received the prestigious string quartet grant from the Kersjes Foundation, one of the largest private culture funds in the Netherlands supporting young talent. Being ‘artist in residence’ as part of the post-grad program of the Dutch String Quartet Academy, the Animato feels hugely privileged to work with inspiring artists and coaches such as Marc Danel and Eberhard Feltz, and Hatto Beyerle and Johannes Meissl, to name a few. The Animato has been chosen from more than 40 applications as one of the four laureates of the Dutch Classical Talent Award 2021-’22! In the near future, the quartet is looking forward to many new challenges, incuding exciting collaborations with musicians such as saxophonist Kika Sprangers, bassoonist Thomas Dulfer, and pianist Hanna Shybayeva, with whom they have recorded Beethoven’s Piano Concerto nr. 1 in a transcription for string quintet.
Arima Quartet (ESP/EST/PL)
Jose Ignacio Lopez Garcia, violin
Joonas Teppo, violin
Beltrán Cubel Gajas, viola
Marta Podwysocka, cello
The Arima quartet, based in Helsinki, Finland, is comprised of musicians studying master at the Sibelius academy: Jose Ignacio Lopez Garcia, Joonas Teppo, Beltran Cubel Gajas and Marta Podwysocka. Inspired to keep music alive, the Arima Quartet members have spent this year of loss of interaction between audience and performer, due to the coronavirus pandemic, to work on; expand and strengthen their repertoire. They are currently mentored by Marko Ylönen, a world reknown solo cellist and pedagogue and Antti Tikkanen first violin from the Meta4 Quartet. They also have received masterclasses of important chamber musicians as Teemu Kupiainen, Kreeta-Julia Heikkila, Marti Rauttio, Kirill Kozlovski and Cecilia Oinas. Their more remarkable performances in the last year are their appearance in the chamber music matinees in Musikkitalo playing Beethoven “Serioso” String Quartet in the Beethoven 250 anniversary (Finnish National Chamber Music Hall) and their performance in the chamber music week of Sibelius Academy.
Belinfante Quartet (NE/UK/ESP)
Olivia Scheepers, violin
Fiona Robertson, violin
Sophie Vroegop, viola
Pau Marques Oleo, cello
The Belinfante Quartet took their Masters in Chamber Music, Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien Hannover. Since 2019 they have been appointed Quartet in Residence, NSKA Nederlands StrijkKwartet Academie and they also have a residency at String Quartet Biennale Amsterdam SQBA. Belinfante Quartet were selected for MUSA (European young Musicians soft Skills Alliance) European professional training project for young string quartets supported by Erasmus+. The quartet had Masterclasses withmusicians such as Luc-Marie Aguera, Isabel Charisius, Eberhard Feltz, Pavel Fischer, Donald Grant, François Guye, Johannes Meissl, Michael Vogler, Oliver Wille, Danel Quartet, Diotima Quartet and the Jerusalem Quartet. With a great enthusiasm, musical knowledge, a wonderful sense for style, sound and exciting ideas, the four wonderful musicians and personalities are very open minded, coming together with a strong quartet identity.
Quatuor Confluence (FR)
Charlotte Saluste-Bridoux, violin
Lorraine Campet, violin
Pierre-Antoine Codron, viola
Tom Almerge-Zerillo, cello
The Confluence Quartet had several members since 2015, but in September 2019, Charlotte and Lorraine joined Pierre-Antoine et Tom, the two founding members. Mathieu Herzog, violist, conductor and founder member of EBENE quartet, is their main teacher. He leads the quartet in different projects and in the string quartet competitions' training. The Confluence Quartet won 1st prize at the "Tremplin pour jeunes quatuors de la philharmonie de Paris" 2016 and Prix Fnapec and Proquartet Prize at the "Fnapec european competition", Paris, 2016. Due to the current health crisis, most of the concerts were cancelled, but the quartet still performed in festivals such as the "Jeudi Musicaux de Royan" and for private concerts. In April 2021 they played live at "Génération France Musique" for RadioFrance. The quartet was invited by the prestigious SINGER-POLIGNAC foundation (Paris, France) to be part of their Young Artist residence, alongside french chamber ensembles like Quatuor EBENE and Quatuor AROD. The quartet recently joined the BOUBO-MUSIC foundation (Basel, SW) who generously lends them some old fine italian instruments.
Erinys Quartet (US/LT/FI/GR)
Elisabeth Stewart, violin
Marija Räisänen, violin
Aida Hadzajlic, viola
Stergios Theodoridis, cello
Based in Helsinki, Finland, the Erinys Quartet was formed in 2018 and is comprised of violinists Elizabeth Stewart and Marija Räisänen, violist Aida Hadzajlic, and cellist Stergios Theodoridis, all of whom are currently pursuing diplomas at the Sibelius Academy. Under the guidance of Finnish cellist Marko Ylönen, Erinys has performed works of Beethoven, Brahms, Shostakovich, and Schubert and presents concerts around Helsinki. The quartet has also worked with Paavo Pohjola and Martti Rautio. Erinys was featured at Mimir Chamber Music Festival (USA) during the summer of 2020, performing web-streamed concerts for global audiences. In addition to chamber music, all four members also participate in the Sibelius Academy Symphony Orchestra and play with professional orchestras throughout Finland.
NOVO Quartet (DK/PL)
Kaya Kato Møller, violin
Nikolai Vasili Nedergaard, violin
Daniel Sledzinski, viola
Signe Ebstrup Bitsch, cello
NOVO Quartet is a Danish-Polish quartet formed in September 2018. All the members are students at the Royal Danish Academy of Music, studying as a chamber music group under Professor Tim Frederiksen – the teacher and mentor behind Danish String Quartet. Over the past years, the four individual members have entered several competitions both in Denmark and abroad, and they have received extremely positive remarks and awards for their performances. The members of the quartet have also played several concerts with solo programs giving them the opportunity to develop as musicians. Additionally, they have each participated in masterclasses with famous and highly respected professors from all over the world, among others: Nikolaj Znaider, Pinchas Zukerman, Milan Vitek, Sergey Kravchenko, Lawrence Power and Jeffrey Irvine. Despite their short time together as a quartet, NOVO Quartet has already played a wide range of repertoire for a variety of concerts. In May 2019 they won the Køge Chamber Music Competition 2019 and Scholarship Competition at The Royal Danish Academy of Music. In June 2019, they represented The Royal Danish Academy of Music at a Dutch music and architecture festival ‘Tilburg is Mooi’. In October 2019 they were semi finalists in the Carl Nielsen International Chamber Music Competition 2019, and in November 2019 they were invited to perform in Shanghai, China. Most recently, they were awarded the Grand Prize Winner in ENKOR International Chamber Music Competition 2020.
Trondheim International Chamber Music Competition proudly announces the 2021 jury. Chairman of the jury is Levon Chilingirian (UK). The jury members are Henninge Båtnes Landaas (NO), Marianna Shirinyan (AM), Øyvind Gimse (NO), Geir Inge Lotsberg (NO), Leonard Disselhorst (DE), and Frederik Øland (DK).
Levon Chilingirian - Jury Chairman
Levon Chilingirian’s long association with Norway and its music was established when the Chilingirian Quartet was invited to give summer courses for the Norwegian Chamber Music Association for well over a decade. Many of the participating young musicians have now become established and highly respected members of the profession. Trondheim, through the inspirational leadership of Kåre Opdal, played a key role in this. Chilingirian is Professor of violin and chamber music at both the Royal Academy of Music and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. His career began with winning the BBC Beethoven (1969) and the ARD Munich International (1971) Competitions with his duo partner, pianist Clifford Benson. In September 1971, the Chilingirian Quartet was formed and established a world-wide reputation for its much-praised interpretations of classical, romantic and contemporary repertoire. As the Quartet approaches its 50th anniversary, it still has two of its founding members, Mark Butler and Chilingirian. Chilingirian is also a soloist and ensemble director and has appeared with the Trondheim Soloists, the Bergen Philharmonic, the Camerata Nordica, the Gothenberg Symphony and many other British and European orchestras. He is honoured to be the Chairman of the Trondheim Quartet Competition since its establishment.
Disselhorst took his first cello lessons at the ageof seven. He completed early studies at the Hanover Conservatory’s Institute for Early Training of highly talented Musicians (IFF), studied with Prof. Martin Ostertag at the University of Music Karlsruhe and with Prof. Jens Peter Maintz at the UdK Berlin. Further studies with the vision string quartet with the Artemis Quartet and Günter Pichler complement his musical education. Leonard has been performing regularly both as a soloist and chamber musician in Germany and abroad and is a regular guest at numerous festivals such as the Mecklenburg Vorpommern Festival, the Lucerne Festival and the Rheingau Music Festival. He was a member of the National Youth Orchestra and has worked with conductors such as Sir Dennis R. Davies and Sir Simon Rattle. Radio recordings were made at SWR, NDR, rbb and Deutschlandradio Kultur. Leonard is a laureate of many prizes in the national competition "Jugend Musiziert", as well as prizewinner of the International Hindemith Competition, the Domenico Gabrielli Competition, several times at the Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy University Competition in Berlin, as well as winner of the renowned Concours de Genève.
Henninge Landaas started playing the violin at the age of three at the Municipal Music School in Trondheim. She continued her musical education at Trøndelag Music Conservatory and the Norwegian Academy of Music, where she studied with Bjarne Fiskum and Magnus Eriksson. She graduated in 1996 with both violin and viola as her main instrument and was awarded top marks. Landaas was a member of the Trondheim Soloists from the beginning in 1987, both as a solo viola player and also as a soloist several times. She has been a soloist with the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra and Trondheim Symphony Orchestra, among others, and she worked for many years as a solo viola player in the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra and the Oslo Philharmonic. From 1994 to 2011, she was a member of the Vertavo String Quartet. In 2014, she formed together with Sølve Sigerland and Ellen Flesjø Ssens Trio. Her extensive discography consists of recordings with both the Vertavo Quartet and Ssens Trio, a number of CDs with the Oslo Philharmonic Chamber group, and as a solist at Lawo Classics with Brahms sonatas with Tim Horton and the Hindemith solosonate op.25. Ssens Trio’s first CD, Beethoven op.3 and op.8, received the "Supersonic Award" from Pizzicato Magazine, and was nominated for the prestigious ICMA Awards in 2018.
Gimse is an internationally renowned teacher who, alongside his position at the Institute of Music at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), has taught masterclasses in Sweden, Denmark, Poland, Spain and Brazil. Chamber music is close to Øyvinds’ heart, and he has performed at all of the major Norwegian chamber music festivals, where he has played with musicians such as Leif Ove Andsnes, Martin Fröst, Anthony Marwood and Bobby McFerrin. Over the course of his 15 years as Artistic Director for the Trondheim Soloists, Gimse developed the orchestra into a fully professional ensemble which is very active on the international music scene. Seven GRAMMY nominations and two Spellemann prizes are the crowning achievements of his six major recordings with the Trondheim Soloists. As musical director Øyvind has also conducted several of Norways’ professional symphony orchestras as well as orchestras in Spain, Lithuania and Vietnam. Øyvind was involved in the establishment of the Trondheim Chamber Music Festival and likewise the setting up of the national talent development programme “Young Musicians”. In recognition of his contribution to cultural life in Trondheim he was awarded the 2013 Trondheim Municipal Cultural Prize.
Geir Inge Lotsberg
Lotsberg began his professional career at a young age and has distinguished himself as one of Norway's most active chamber musicians. He studied with Leif Jørgensen (1927-1988) in Oslo from the age of ten for eight years, Sandor Vègh in Salzburg, Camilla Wicks in Houston and Ana Chumachenco in Munich. In 1991 he became one of the founding members of Oslo String Quartet. He is a widely experienced musician and has been a member of ensembles such as the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra and Camerata Academica Salzburg, and concertmaster of the Bergen Philharmonic and Norwegian National Opera orchestras. In addition to collaborations with other musicians including Håvard Gimse, Einar Steen-Nøkleberg, Vebjørn Anvik and Kåre Nordstoga, Lotsberg has performed as a soloist with the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, the Norwegian National Opera Orchestra, the Norwegian Radio Orchestra and Camerata Academica Salzburg. Lotsberg is much in demand as a teacher and orchestra leader, working regularly since 2005 with TrondheimSolistene and as a teacher at the Barratt Due Institute of Music in Oslo since 1994. From August 2017 he is appointed as Artistic Director of the TrondheimSolistene.
Armenian-born Marianna Shirinyan has received Danish Broadcasting Corporation’s prestigious P2 award for her contribution to Danish music life and the critics prize of the association of Danish critics. She is a frequent guest at a string of international music festivals, among them the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival, Bodensee Festival, the Schwetzinger Festspiele, MDR Summer Music Festival, Festspillene in Bergen. She has won the reputation of being one of this generations leading pianists through solo appearances orchestras as Danish National Symphony Orchestra, Oslo, Helsinki and Copenhagen Philharmonic Orchestras, Munich Symphony Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra, Kammerakademie Potsdam to name a few. Shirinyan is a professor of piano at the Norwegian Academy of Music in Oslo, a Steinway artist and artistic director of the Oremandsgaard Chamber Music Festival in Denmark. From the summer 2020 also co-artistic director of the Valdres Sommersymfoni in Norway. Her recordings has been received enthusiastically by international reviewers and listeners alike. Her latest release, the Fantasy for Piano and Orchestra by Louis Glass, which she has recorded together with the Rheinische Philharmonie Koblenz under the baton of maestro Daniel Raiskin has been awarded the P2 prize of the Danish radio in 2018.
Violinist Frederik Øland was educated by Serguei Azizian at The Royal Danish Music Academy in Copenhagen and Ulf Wallin at Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler in Berlin. In 2009, at the age of 23, he won the position as concert master at Copenhagen Philharmonic Orchestra, and was employed as a teacher of violin and chamber music at The Royal Danish Academy of Music. Frederik Øland has been awarded various Danish prizes such as grants from Jacob Gade Foundation, Victor Borge Foundation and Léonie Sonning Foundation. He is violinist for the award-winning Danish String Quartet, most recently elected as Ensemble of the Year 2020 by Musical America. The quartet tours all over the world and in 2020 completed a concert cycle with all Beethoven's string quartets in Lincoln Center, New York. Their CD series ‘Prism’ was nominated for a Grammy Award in 2019. In 2017, Frederik Øland resigned his position at Copenhagen Phil to focus on working in the Danish String Quartet. However, he continues to assist in several of the Danish orchestras when time allows. The Danish String Quartet is the organizers of both the DSQ Festival and the concert series ‘Series of Four’, both in administrative roles and as artistic directors.
Photo credits: Levon Chilingirian: Garo Berberian, Øyvind Gimse: Sven Erik Knoff, Geir Inge Lotsberg and Marianna Shirinyan: Nikolaj Lund, Henninge Landaas: Rune Bendiksen, Frederik Øland: C. Bittencourt