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La Biennale di Venezia

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Biennale Musica 2021

Neue Vocalsolisten

Silver Lion

Award ceremony

Monday 20 September 2021, 12:00 noon
Ca’ Giustinian, Venice

Neue Vocalsolisten

La Biennale di Venezia will present the Silver Lion to the ensemble Neue Vocalsolisten.

The ensemble based in Stuttgart obtains the acknowledgement “for its creative collaboration with some of the greatest living composers and for its development of a vocal a cappella repertoire within the field of contemporary composition”. The award ceremony for the Golden Lion to the Neue Vocalsolisten, one of the most representative vocal ensembles dedicated to contemporary music, will take place on September 20th in the Sala delle Colonne at Ca’ Giustinian, the headquarters of La Biennale (at 12 noon). “Its seven exceptional soloist members – Johanna Vargas, Susanne Leitz-Lorey, Truike van der Poel, Daniel Gloger, Martin Nagy, Guillermo Anzorena, Andreas Fischer – have formed an ensemble which is also an experimental laboratory for vocal dramaturgy, an open discussion group on contemporary vocal techniques and the meaning of singing together from a historic perspective and as future potential. For great composers such as Salvatore Sciarrino and Georges Aperghis, the Neue Vocalsolisten are a living laboratory for the voice and for the more ample and diversified vocal techniques, a remarkable training ground that leads to operatic composition” (from the motivation for the award).

On September 19th, at the Teatro alle Tese in the Arsenale (at 4 pm), the Neue Vocalsolisten will present two world premiere performances: a work for voice and electronics by the American composer George Lewis, commissioned by Biennale Musica, and a work for vocal theatre in concert for six solo voices by Russian composer Sergej Newski. The electronics will be developed and performed by the CIMM (Centre for Computer Music and Multimedia of La Biennale di Venezia).

Biographical notes

The seven singers of the Neue Vocalsolisten – Johanna Vargas, Susanne Leitz-Lorey, Truike van der Poel, Daniel Gloger, Martin Nagy, Guillermo Anzorena, and Andreas Fischer –  see themselves as explorers and discoverers who are constantly searching for new forms of vocal expression in their exchange with composers. One focus is their work with artists who virtuously exploit the possibilities of digital media, with a desire for networking, playing with genres, dissolving space, perspectives and functions. The ensemble's projects are characterised by idiosyncratic interdisciplinary formats between music theatre, performance, installation and concert staging. With more than 30 premieres a year, the ensemble's work is regarded worldwide as leading and unique in the field of contemporary vocal music. The ensemble's partners are always top-class specialist ensembles and orchestras, international opera houses, the independent theatre scene, electronic studios and numerous organisers of festivals and concert series of new music all over the world.

Against this background, the Neue Vocalsolisten have shaped the genre of vocal chamber music theatre, which contemplates works by Georges Aperghis, Carola Bauckholt, Luciano Berio, Francesco FiIidei, Luca Francesconi, Gordon Kampe, Mischa Käser, Sarah Nemtsov, Sergej Newski, Lucia Ronchetti, Katharina Rosenberger, Oscar Strasnoy and Claude Vivier.

The Neue Vocalsolisten work regularly with artists from non-European musical cultures and genres. In VOICE AFFAIRS, the Neue Vocalsolisten 2021 initiate artistic border crossings in which contemporary music is crosspollinated through the diversity of Lebanon's experimental music scenes. The project connects the singers with eight artists from Lebanon, Egypt, Palestine and Israel who, from the perspective of composition, electronic music, sound art, improvisation and avant-pop, speak of the diversity, contradictions, explosiveness and poetry of this cultural space. In its new "Magical Spaces" series, the ensemble, together with three young web designers, explores future performance formats between analogue and digital perception, and exploits all the possibilities of digital media.

Numerous world premieres are slated for 2021, by Cynthia Zaven, Raed Yassin, Dániel Péter Biró, Aya Metwalli, Samir Odeh-Tamimi, Youmna Saba, Manolis Manousakis, Christian Mason, Alessandro Bosetti, Juliana Hodkinson, Sergej Newski and George Lewis, among others. Despite the pandemic, the Neue Vocalsolisten are giving concerts in Stuttgart, Berlin, Marseille, Lisbon, Darmstadt, Salzburg, Beirut and Venice.

Biennale Musica
Biennale Musica