Martin Bruns

Trained first as a professional violinist, Swiss baritoneMartin Bruns studied voice with Daniel Ferro at the Juilliard School in New York. Among other teachers were Ernst Haefliger, Arleen Auger, Phyllis Curtin, and Mary Morrison in masterclasses and festivals such as Aldeburgh, Siena, Banff and Tanglewood. After winning the New York State Metropolitan Opera Auditions and the Joy in Singing Award, hestartedhis operatic career at the Wiesbaden Opera in leading roles like e.g. Papageno, Guglielmo, Figaro (Barbiere), Dandini, Donner (Rheingold) and Silvio. Guest appearances took him also to the opera houses in Düsseldorf, Freiburg, Bern and the Nationaltheater in Munich.

Known for his vast repertoire spanning from Monteverdi to the contemporary,Bruns has been a soloist with major orchestras including the Choir and Symphony Orchestra of the Bavarian Radio, the Scharoun Ensemble of the Berlin Philharmonic, the NDR Symphony Orchestra Hamburg, the New York Chamber Symphony and the Israel Chamber Orchestra underconductors such as Marcello Viotti, Ivor Bolton, Eric Ericson, YoavTalmi, Heinz Holliger, Peter Ruzicka, Gerard Schwarz, AviOstrowsky, Oleg Caetani and Jonathan Nott.He has sung with early music ensembles such as the Ensemble of the Schola CantorumBasiliensisand the Academy for Early Music Berlin and contemporary music ensembles such as Ensemble ResonanzHamburg and Ensemble Contrechamps Geneva. Premiere performances include works by composers such asAribert Reimann, Wolfgang Rihm,Earl Kim, John Musto and Frangiz Ali-Zadeh.

Bruns has appeared at major concert halls and festivals in, among others, Berlin, Frankfurt, Munich, Bonn, Zurich, Geneva, Lucerne, Salzburg, New York, Washington DC, Seattle, San Diego and Ottawa.

He has been professor of voice at the University of the Arts in Zurich, the HochschulefürMusik und Tanz in Cologne/Aachen, and, since 2011, atthe Hanns EislerHochschulefürMusik in Berlin, where he currently chairs the vocal department. From 2014-2016 he also served as vice president of the school.Martin Brunshas given masterclasses e.g. at Yale University, the Daniel Ferro Vocal Program in Italy, and most recently at the Shanghai Conservatory in China.

Elizabeth Vidal


Elizabeth Vidal, undoubtedly one of the highest voices in the world, studied at the Paris Opera Singing Academy with Elisabeth Grümmer and made her debut at the age of 23 on the stage of the Aix en Provence Festival alongside Jessye Norman in Ariadne auf Naxos, before consolidating her experience with John Eliot Gardiner in the troupe of the Lyon Opera.

Since the 1990s she has been invited to the world's leading stages, Spoleto, Covent Garden, the Accademia Santa Cecilia in Rome, Santiago in Chile, the BBC Proms in London's Royal Albert Hall, Toronto, Hamburg, Berlin, Vienna, La Fenice in Venice, the Lincoln Centre in New York, La Monnaie in Brussels, the Grand Theatre in Geneva and the Arena of Verona in such virtuoso roles as Olympia (Les Contes d'Hoffman), Zerbinetta (Ariadne auf Naxos), the Queen of the Night, Euridice (Orphee aux Enfers - a DVD recording released in 2003), the Princess in L'Enfant et les Sortileges and Lakme. In 2000, after her great success in the role of Gilda alongside Leo Nucci's Rigoletto, she was the first Frenchwoman to be declared Best Coloratura Soprano by a jury of eminent Italian critics presided over by Giorgio Gualerzi, thus following in the footsteps of June Anderson (1990) and Sumi Jo (1995).

More than fifty television broadcasts (Le Monde est a vous, Musiques au cceur. Mezzo I'info, Arte, Victoires de la Musique) and one recent film of Carmina Burana for TF1 (2006) have made her one of the most popular French artists of her generation.

In addition to her recordings with Erato {L'Enfant et les Sortileges conducted by Armin Jordan and Scylla et Glaucis with John Eliot Gardiner), Decca (Thais, with Renee Fleming), Auvidis (L'Enfant et les Sortileges with Alain Lombard and a recital Romances et Chants d'oiseaux), Chant du Monde (Manon by Auber): EMI (Carmen with Roberto Alagna and Angela Gheorghiu), she regularly collaborates with Forlane for her recitals or, in a more specialised repertory with Opera Rara (Cendrillon la Fee, 2002; Ginevra di Scozia, the title role recorded live at Trieste Opera, 2003, and two recitals of songs by Meyerbeer and Ricci in 2004/05).

In 2006, she received international recognition for her interpretation of the Queen of the Night in a recording with Sir Charles Mackerras (Chandos) and in three other productions (Athens, Rome and Reggio di Torino). She was also acclaimed as Countess Adele of Le Comte Ory in the staging of Jerome Savary at opera Royal of Wallonie under Alberto Zedda.

Recently she has performed in two productions of the Abduction from the Seraglio in Torino and Cagliari, conducted by Guschlbauer. She also met tremendous success in Tokyo, Seoul and the Paris Chatelet, where she gave recitals of acrobatic coloratura arias.

Her two latest recordings have just been published by OPERA RARA: unknown gems of Offenbach with Jennifer Larmore and La Serenata and a collection of bubbling French and Italian songs. Both have been granted excellent reviews.

Teimuraz Gugushvili


People’s artist of Georgia, principal soloist of the Tbilisi State Opera and Ballet Theatre named after Paliashvili, Laureate of the State Prize of Georgia and Cavalier of the Order of Honor of Georgia, Professor. Teimuraz Gugushvili also was awarded the Paliashvili Prize, the Andzhaparidze Prize, the Arkhipova Found Prize. He is called Golden Tenor of Georgia; he is one of the most famous opera soloists of modernity. An artist and a pedagogue, he belongs to the pleiad of masters that enriched greatly the national vocal school.
Teimuraz Gugshvili graduated from the Tbilisi State Conservatory named after Saradzhishvili and finished the post-graduate studies of academical singing in the Tbilisi Conservatoire by People’s Artist of Georgia N.Andguladze.
From 1968 to 1970 he was a probationer member at the Teatro alla Scala (Milan, Italy).
More than 20 years the artist is engaged in educational work. He is currently Professor of the department of solo singing at his Alma Mater – Tbilisi State Conservatory.
During his work at the theatre Teimuraz Gugushvili played almost all parts for tenor of the classical opera repertory, among which are Nemorino ("The Elixir of Love" by G.Donizetti), Count Almaviva ("The Barber of Seville" by G.Rossini), Duke of Mantua, Radamés, Don Carlos, Cassio ("Rigoletto", "Aida", "Don Carlos", "Otello" by G.Verdi), Cavaradossi, Pinkerton ("Tosca", "Madam Butterfly" by G.Puccini), Turridu ("Rustic Chivalry" by P.Mascagni), Canio ("Pagliacci" by R.Leoncavallo), Lensky, German ("Eugene Onegin", "The Queen of Spades" by P.Tchaikovsky), parts of the operas by national composers Z.Paliashvili, V.Dolidze, O.Taktakishvili and G.Kancheli.
The tour rout of the singer is as wide as his repertoire. Teimuraz Gugushvili has sung in USA, England, Scotland, Ireland, Spain, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Belgium, Denmark, Holland, Israel and Turkey. He appeared on the opera stages of Moscow (the Bolshoi Theatre), Saint-Petersburg (Mariinsky Theatre), Kazan, Yekaterinburg, Kiev, Baku, Kishinev.

Pavel Egorov


Graduated from the Moscow State Conservatory named after P.I. Tchaikovsky in 1975, where he studied under the guidance of professor Tatyana Nikolaeva and professor Vera Gornostaeva. In 1974 he was awarded First Prize and Golden Medal at the Schumann International Competition in Zwickau, Germany. Since 1976 works and resides in St. Petersburg, where he completed post-graduate studies at the St. Petersburg State Conservatory named after N.A.Rimsky-Korsakov in 1980. From that on he successfully combines teaching with concert engagements.
Professor Egorov has been a frequent jury member of all kinds of National and International Piano Competitions ( the Schumann Competition in Zwickau, the Tchaikovsky Juvenial Competition, “Virtuosi 2000”, “A step to Parnassus” and others) and from 1989 he is the Head of Jury at the annual International Competition of Piano Duets “Brother and sister” in St. Petersburg.
Pavel Egorov combines his artistic and pedagogique work with scientific research. He is the author of the first Russian edition of the Complete Works for piano of Robert Schumann in seven volumes. In 1989 he was awarded the International “Schumann-prize” and elected as Honorary Member of the Schumann Society, Dusseldorf. In 2002 Pavel Egorov has completed the first Russian urtext edition of the Well-tempered clavier of J.S.Bach.
He is a renowned music researcher and scientific editor, Honorary Member of the Filharmonic Society in St. Petersburg, has been awarded the Order of Polish Republic “Merit in Culture” in 2003, elected an active member of the St. Petersburg Department of Education and Scientific Development of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences in 2007.

Olga Kondina


People's Artist of Russia, Prize-winner at the Glinka All-Union Vocalists Competition (Moscow, 1984), Prize-winner and Holder of a Special Award for Best Soprano at the Francesco Viñas International Competition (Barcelona, Spain, 1987). She graduated from the Ural State Conservatoire in violin studies (class of Professor Gashinsky) in 1982, and in solo singing (class of Professor Rodionova) in 1982. From 1983 to 1985 she continued her studies as a postgraduate at the Tchaikovsky State Conservatoire in Moscow (class of Professor I. Arkhipova). Olga Kondina has been a leading soloist at the Mariinsky Theatre since 1985. Her repertoire includes all the leading party lyric-coloratura soprano. The singer's extensive chamber repertoire includes a number of solo recitals of works by French, Italian and German composers. Olga Kondina has toured with the Mariinsky Theatre and independently in Europe, America and Japan; she has performed at the Metropolitan Opera in New York and at the Royal Albert Hall in London.
Olga Kondina is a member of the jury of a number of international singing competitions (including the "Three Centuries of the Classical Romance" International Festival-Competition and the William Stenhammar International Music Competition), and is a lecturer in the singing class at the Rimsky-Korsakov State Conservatoire in St Petersburg. For two years she has been in charge of the Department of the History and Theory of Vocal Art.
The singer's discography includes the CD recordings Russian Classical Romances (1993), Sparrow Oratorio: The Four Seasons (1993), Ave Maria (1994), Reflections (1996, with the Andreyev Academic Russian Orchestra), Ten Brilliant Arias (1997) and Unique baroque music (with Erik Kurmangaliev, conductor Alexander Rudin).

Martina Rüping


Martina Rüping has made a name for herself interpreting great opera arias and works from the Lied- and concert repertoire as well as liturgical music. The press praised her "wonderfully scintillating soprano that would do any Botticelli Angel honour" (Berliner Tagesspiegel), her "beguiling pianissimo"(FAZ) and her "crystal-clear coloraturas" (Süddeutsche Zeitung).
Martina Rüping was born in Halle on the river Saale and studied with Prof. Ilse Hahn at the Academy of Music “Carl Maria von Weber“ in Dresden. Subsequently, she started to work intensively with Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, a very productive cooperation that lasted for more than ten years. Her voice is trained by the coloratura soprano Brigitte Eisenfeld.
Following engagements with the opera houses in Halle and Cologne, she started her freelance career.
Initially, Martina Rüping distinguished herself in the German soubrette- and coloratura category, for example as Ännchen (Stuttgart), Queen of the Night (Opera Cologne, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Munich), Blondchen (Karlsruhe) and Zerbinetta (Komische Oper Berlin).
Later, she also sang parts in the modern category, for example the Ida in “The Young Lord“ (Munich) by Hans Werner Henze.
Parts such as Gilda, Sophie, Pamina, Susanna, Oscar and the Fiakermilli complete her repertoire.
She has given guest performances at major national and international opera houses, for example in Los Angeles, Toulouse, Turin, Tokyo, Munich, Stuttgart, Berlin and Karlsruhe as well as at the Bayreuth Festival.
She has worked with well-known conductors such as Riccardo Muti, Kent Nagano, Philippe Herreweghe, Pierre Boulez, Bruno Weill, Edo de Waart, Frans Brüggen, Alessandro de Marchi, Peter Schneider and Michael Schneider.
She is very interested in interpreting baroque parts and has close ties to the “International Händel Festival“ in Halle, where she has already sung in various Händel productions - as Atalanta in Serse, Achill in Deidamia, Clomiri in Imeneo, Esilena in Rodrigo and Iole in Hercules.
In addition, Martina Rüping has a wide-ranging concert repertoire.
She had her fantastic debut at the Teatro alla Scala as the soprano in Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana, conducted by Riccardo Muti.
Together with the Radiokamerorkest, conducted by Philippe Herreweghe, she sang the soprano part in Haydn’s “Creation“ in Amsterdam, Stockholm and Oslo. She also sang in Haydn’s “Seven Last Words of Christ on the Cross“, conducted by Frans Brüggen and Erwin Schulhoff’s “Flames“, conducted by Edo de Waart.
Martina Rüping has dedicated herself to studying the literature of the Lied. Her recital “Alma Mahler - the most beautiful girl in Vienna“ – in cooperation with the Gergiev Festival in Rotterdam – attracts a lot of interest.
Modern music performances are also part of the artist’s repertoire. She sang in "Le troisième et dernier testament" by Nicolas Obouhow at Concertgebouw Amsterdam -conducted by Reinbert de Leeuw.

Semion Skigin


He graduated from the Leningrad State Conservatoire and completed post-graduate course in chamber music and lieder accompaniment. In 1975 he won the international competition for piano accompanists in Rio de Janeiro, which set him firmly on the path to conquering the world’s great concert venues.
From 1978-81 he was guest professor at the Hochschule für Musik Carl Maria von Weber in Dresden. Since 1990 Semion Skigin has been Professor of Accompaniment and Role Study at the Academy of Music "Hanns Eisler" Berlin.
Semion Skigin has iniciated and interpreted a number of recordings unique in content and volume for EMI, Philips, BMG and other leading labels. Together with Sergei Leiferkus, Nucia Focile, Nina Rautio, Violetta Urmana, Olga Borodina, Vladimir Chernov and others he has recorded the complete works for voice and piano of Mussorgsky, Tchaikovski, Glinka and Rachmaninov as well as miscellaneous CDs of romances of Borodin, Dargomyzhsky, Glier, Shostakovitch, Verdi and Wagner for which he was awarded the Gramophone Award in 1995 and the Cannes Classical Award in 1996.
At present Semion Skigin is regarded one of the most acknowledged and engaged masters of piano accompaniment. Among his artistic partners are Olaf Bär, Andreas Schmidt, Robert Hall, Cheryl Studer and Andrik Wottrich.
He regularly directs masterclasses at music colleges in Germany, the Netherlands and the USA. Semion Skigin is Artistic Director of the Theatre Barge Music Festival in Dresden and Vice President and Artistic Director of the Berlin Salon.

Robert Holl


Robert Holl was born in Rotterdam where he studied with Jan Veth and David Hollestelle. In 1971 he won the First Prize at the "International Vocal Competition” in s’-Hertogenbosch, followed by studies with Hans Hotter in Munich. In 1972 he won the First Prize at the "International Music Competition of the German Broadcasting Association” (ARD) in Munich which resulted in TV/Radio engagements and orchestral concerts. Between 1973 and 1975 he was a member of the Bayerische Staatsoper Munich.
Robert Holl is one of the most important Lieder singers of our time, having a particular preference for the Ger-man (especially Schubert) and Russian repertoire. He sings regularly with constant high acclaim in all the great music centres in Europe, Israel, the USA, Russia, and Japan.
His numerous musical activities also include Masterclasses in Holland, Austria, Great Britain and Canada, Ra-dio and TV productions, many recordings with renowned conductors and Lieder-CDs (some with András Schiff and Oleg Maisenberg at the piano).
Robert Holl is artistic director of Schubertiads in Austria and Holland as well as artistic advisor of the "Poetry and Music" series in the Brahmssaal of the Vienna Musikverein.
In 1990 Robert Holl was awarded the prestigious Austrian title of "Kammersänger", in 1997 he was named an "Honourable Member" of the "Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde in Wien" and of the Festival "Carinthischer Sommer" as well. In 1998 he became a Professor for Lied and Oratory at the "Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst" in Vienna. In 2005 he was awarded the "Österreichisches Ehrenkreuz für Wissenschaft und Kunst I. Klasse".
In 2007 he received the high Dutch award of „Ridder in de Orde van de Nederlandse Leeuw” in his home town of Rotterdam.

Vladimir Chernov


Vladimir Chernov graduated from the Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow where he studied with Georgy Seleznev and Gugo Tiz. In 1981 he joined the Kirov Opera in St. Petersburg as a soloist. In this same year he won second prize, and was awarded a Special Jury Prize, in the Glinka Competition. In 1982 he was sent to the prestigious Accademia della Scala where he studied with Guilietta Simionato.
During the following years he achieved notable successes in other major vocal competitions, the Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow, Carlo Galetti in Busetto, Miriam Helin Vocal Competition in Helsinki.
He is recognised throughout the operatic world for his unique vocal qualities, acting ability and an impeccable Italianate style that is the hallmark of his performances in the numerous Verdi and bel canto operas in his repertoire. He had performed practically all opera repertory for baritone at Covent Garden, La Scala, Opera Bastille, Viennese Opera and other major stages. During a long period Vladimir Chernov had appeared in many of Verdi’s operas under the baton of J.Levine at the Metropolitan Opera.
As a recital artist Vladimir Chernov has appeared at many of the world’s leading venues including the Wigmore Hall in London, Lincoln Center in New York, Vienna Konzerthaus, Los Angeles, Finnish National Opera in Helsinki and many other cities. The singer has an immense chamber repertory and appreciates the most Russian, German and Italian vocal music.
In March 2005 he was in residence at UCLA as a Regents’ Lecturer in the Music Department’s Division of Voice and Opera where he coached their young singers in both private and class lessons, taught two Master Classes which were open to the public, and performed in recital. At the present time Vladimir Chernov is a Professor of Vocal Studies at UCLA and a Faculty member of Opera Ischia; he combines teaching with his other professional engagements.