CREATING MUSICAL INDEPENDENCE IN VIEW OF HEINRICH SCHIFFS VISION
> 2023 <
BERNHARD M. VOSS
VALSASSINA ENSEMBLE WIEN
Die Kunst als Selbstzweck und rein ästhetischer Kunstgenuß wird scharf abgelehnt.
Hanns Eisler (1898 - 1962)
Since over 10 years the Valsassina Ensemble Wien creates and pursues musical independence.
2011 León de Castillo invited several young colleagues of the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna to create a sound which is rather unusual as a steady accompaniment for a singer.
In March 2013 their debut concert took place at the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna, putting the Chamber Orchestras history from the beginning at the right place: in between history, politics and art, following their goal to rethink classical music in Vienna.
During the first 3 seasons the cellist and conductor Heinrich Schiff (1951–2016) prepared the Valsassina Ensemble for their concerts. He welcomed the spirit of the chamber orchestra during rehearsals and empowered the initiative of the Ensemble, where many young artists came deliberately together to perform music to make a change.
Since then the viennese chamber orchestra has played at renowned concert halls as the Carnegie Hall NYC, Wiener Musikverein, Wiener Konzerthaus and also the Mexican State Opera Palacio de Bellas Artes and in the big Philharmony Hall of Mexico City, the Sala Nezuahualcóyotl.
Other performances were played at the Schlosstheater Schönbrunn, Theater Odeon, Sofiensäle, Ehrbar Saal, Palais Schönburg, Castillo de Chapultepec MX, Teatro Peón Contreras MX, Teatro de la Ciudad MX, Teatro Juan de la Cabada MX and at the big hall of the Radiokulturhaus (Großer Sendesaal) in Vienna.
Following the dream of innovation the Valsassina Ensemble started in 2016 with transdisciplinary open air concert formats to build bridges between classical music and/or electronic music, alternative pop music, fine / visual arts, history and politics. For example, during their performances at the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna, a theatre play about the refuge seeking of the young photographer Erich Lessing in 1939 took place in different panels in combination with anti-fascist music of exiled composers. Furthermore, the Ensemble cooperated with the contemporary composer Gavin Gamboa (*1985) and the artist collective Teaching Machine (Los Angeles) to initiate a project about Georg Friedrich Händel, Johann Sebastian Bach and Domenico Scarlatti melded with electronic music and visual art.
Remembering the Seneca Falls Convention of 1848 and the first Women's Sunday in June 1908 of the Women's Social and Political Union the Valsassina Ensemble started in summer 2018 with a new yearly based concert format: Fem.Klang. As a feminist project it is focused on the works of female composers from baroque until contemporary music.
On the occasion of the 280th anniversary of Antonio Vivaldi's death, the Viennese chamber orchestra started in summer 2021 an interdisciplinary multimedia project referring to the number 4 at the viennese Karlskirche titled IV Viertual Dimensional Reality: Vivaldiana. The project included projections on one of the biggest churches in Vienna as the performance of The Four Seasons near Antonio Vivaldis grave.
In the year 2022 the Ensemble created the "Baustellen Klassik" to focus on the objective of construction sites as a vehicle of time travel on the constant journey as an investment for a better future. For these series the conductor and composer Bernhard Melbye Voss wrote immersive concept music interacting with the sounds of the machines and the construction workers. It was performed next to the construction site for the new metro station at Kirchengasse, Vienna.
2021 the Ensemble made its debut at the Donauinselfest, which is the largest open-air music festival in the world, with around 3 million visitors over 3 days, playing as the first classical music part of the main festival stage in 40 years festival history.
The Valsassina Ensemble is the Festival Orchestra of the human-rights festival Primavera Festival Wien.
The main conductor is Bernhard Melbye Voss (Denmark).
heinrich schiff /
Ensemble Vienna /
making music since 2011
playing concerts since 2013
Creating musical independence
in view of Heinrich Schiffs Vision