Violinist Peter Herresthal is a regular guest with orchestras in Norway and abroad. He collaborates with some of the most important composers of our time and has recorded several violin concertos for BIS and Simax labels. He is professor at the Norwegian Academy of Music and visiting Professor at Royal College of Music in London at New York University. He has previously held the position of professor at Edsberg Manor and at the Royal College of Music in Stockholm. Herresthal is artistic director of the Summeracademy Voksenåsen Strings.
Isabelle van Keulen a truly versital musician. Her versatility lies in the fact that she plays the violin as well as the viola with the same energy, performing chamber music in any thinkable combination and directing chamber orchestra performances. She has over the course of her career engaged in works written by contemporary composers, and has had many concertos written especially for her. She is professor at the Luzern University of Arts and visiting professor at the Norwegian Academy of Music.
Professor Stephan Barratt-Due has had a wide-ranging career as a soloist, chamber musician and chamber music coach. In his teaching career he has taught several of the best Norwegian violinists of the younger generation. He is Artistic Director of Barratt Due Music Institute and leader of the Oslo Camerata.
Mark Messenger is recognised globally as a violinist, conductor, teacher, and educationalist. As a soloist, conductor and chamber musician (member of the Bochmann and Bingham Quartets since 1984) he has worked togheter with many of the great names. Since 2002, he has been much in demand as a teacher, international judge, external examiner, to give masterclasses and as a lecturer. He is currently Head of Strings at the Royal College of Music in London, and consultant for the Norwegian Academy in Oslo.
Magnus Ericsson was 1st concert master of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra from 1984 – 1999 and of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Stockholm, 1999 – 2010. During 1992-2001 he was professor at the Norwegian Academy of Music and 2000-2005 professor at Edsberg Manor and at the Royal College of Music, Stockholm. Since 2005 he is professor at Ingesund Academy of Music/Karlstad University
Alf Richard Kraggerud is one of Europe’s most respected talent developers. He is a violin teacher at the Barratt Due Institute of Music and has been the teacher of several of Norway’s most famous violinists today. In 1994 he founded Valdres Sommersymfoni, a course and a festival that has grown to become Northern Europe’s number one course for classical music talents.
Stephanie Baer is Director of String Studies, Viola and chamber music professor at New York University. She has toured extensively around the world and currently plays together with the piano quartet Metamorphosis. She has toured around the US with the Arioso Ensemble and has been first viola at the Carmel Bach Festival.
Melissa Phelps, described by The Guardian as “one of the most talented cellists of her generation”, has played throughout the world as soloist and recitalist, is in wide demand as a chamber music player. She is also a highly respected teacher, having taught at several major European conservatories. Melissa Phelps currently teaches at The Royal College of Music i London. Her own teachers were Paul Tortelier and Joan Dickson. One of her major musical influence was the late Jacqueline du Pré and in whose BBC Television masterclasses she played. Melissa Phelps has premièred many important new works in the UK including pieces by Witold Lutoslawski, Roger Smalley and Mark Anthony Turnage. She is a member of the Camilli String Quartet who recorded Michael Nyman’s 4th Quartet for Decca and she has also recorded for ASV, Meridian and Teldec, winning a Best Chamber Music Record of the Year award.
Ole Eirik Ree is teaching cello at Barratt Due Institute of Music. He is also artistic director of the organisation Valdres Festival and Valdres Sommersymfoni – a summer course for classical music. Ree has a doctorate in music from Mason Gross School of the Arts, USA, were he studied with the cello legend Zara Nelsona and Guarneri Quartet.
The cellist Henrik Brendstrup trained in Copenhagen with Erling Bløndal Bengtsson and in London with William Pleeth and Ralph Kirshbaum. He is one of the few Nordic musicians who has received both the French music prize Diapason d’Or and the German Deutsche Schallplattenpreis. Henrik Brendstrup has performed as soloist and chamber musician in most of Europe, and has played with most of the Danish orchestras. For several years he has taught cello at the Royal Danish Academy of Music in Copenhagen, but are now working as a professor at The Royal Academy of Music in Aarhus.
Rüdiger Ludwig is born in Mainz in 1970. From 1991 to 1993 he studied at the Hochschule Frankfurt with Professor Günther Klaus. Before he was hired a the NDR Radio Filharmonics he was the basist of the Filharmonic City Orchestra in Mainz. Rüdiger also plays chamber music in the ensemble Kammermusik 21, an ensemble consisting of the two NDR-Orchestras, and Isabelle van Keulen.
Dan Styffe is a central figure in Norwegian music life. Although born in Sweden, his professional career has been based in Norway. He studied with Göran Nyberg, Knut Guettler and Gary Karr. He worked as Karr’s assistant 1981-82 before he accepted the position as Principal Bassist with The Norwegian Opera Orchestra and later the same position in The Norwegian Chamber Orchestra. Now Styffe is Co-Principal Bassist in Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra and Professor at The Norwegian Academy of Music and Barratt Due’s Institute of Music. Styffe is regularly performing at international chamber music festivals as soloist and chamber musician and gives Masterclasses around the world. He records for SIMAX Classics.
Maria Tarasewicz has already gained an enviable international reputation as a chamber musician, duo partner and a pedagogue. The depth and quality of Maria’s credentials can be judged through the collaborations she has had with many great international artists, including Ivry Gitlis, Maxim Vengerov, Gavriel Lipkind, Dora Schwarzberg, Leonid Kerbel, Truls Mørk, Vladimir Perlin, Leonid Gorokhov, Gabriele Ragghianti, Itamar Golan, Paul Gulda, Paul Badura-Skoda and Hogon Austbo.
She is also committed to working with and developing younger artists, and her invitations not only as a performer but also as a teacher and accompanist have taken her to many international musical festivals including Summeracademy Voksenåsen in Norway. Maria has performed in all of London major concert venues including Wigmore Hall, Cadogan Hall, Southbank, Royal Albert Hall and many others. She also appears regularly on BBC Radio 3.
One of Maria’s current projects is the initiative of cofounding The Thinking Musician©, the platform organising summer music courses combining music as art, philosophy, intellectual provocations and speaking of the artist’s role in world.