Ensemble Mendelssohn Official Website  © 2018 

Musicians

Daniel Rubenstein - violin

Daniel Rubenstein performed extensively as a chamber musician, in recitals or as a soloist, across Belgium, Holland, Germany, Spain, Portugal, France, Italy, Luxembourg, Ireland, Bulgaria, Romania, Brazil, Turkey, Tunisia, Israel, South Korea and Japan. 1st Prize Winner of several national music competitions, Daniel Rubenstein gave his first concert as a soloist at the age of 15 with the National Orchestra of Belgium under the direction of Mendi Rodan. He performed nearly 200 chamber music works with International artists in festivals and important Concert Series, and has created about 30 new works by renowned composers, some dedicated to him. His CD recordings received excellent critics from the International press (Gramophone, Crescendo, Klassik Heute, Fanfare). Graduated with Honors from the Royal Brussels Conservatory (Belgium) and the Indiana University (USA) in 3 instruments (violin, viola & piano), Daniel Rubenstein is presently violin and viola professor at the Royal Conservatory of Mons (Belgium) and Associate Professor in chamber music at the Royal Conservatory of Brussels. 

Sophie Ackermann - violin

A Prize Winner of the 2013 New Tenuto National Competition (Belgium), Sophie Ackermann performed as soloist in Mozart, Aruntunian, Mendelssohn and Brahms concertos, together with the Orchestre Royal de Chambre de Wallonie in festivals in Belgium and with the Symphony Orchestra of the Alicante University in Italy (Musicfest Perugia). After obtaining her Master Degree with High Distinction at the Mons Royal Conservatory in Belgium in the class of Daniel Rubenstein, she pursue her studies in the class of Hagaï Shaham at the Buchmann-Mehta School of Music at the University of Tel-Aviv where she also served as concertmaster of the University Orchestra which worked under conductors such as Zubin Mehta. As a chamber musician, Sophie Ackermann performed in various student/faculty concerts in Mons Royal Conservatory and was also invited in 2014 and 2015 as a Young Artist at the Festival Mozart (Waterloo) where she performed as a violinist and violist in various chamber music works together with International artists. 

Vincent Hepp - viola

First viola-solo at the Liege Philharmonic Orchestra and at the Wallonia Royal Opera House before becoming First-soloist at the Symphony Orchestra of the Royal Opera House in Brussels « La Monnaie », Vincent Hepp graduated with high honours at the Brussels Conservatoire in violin and viola, as well as at the Queen Elisabeth Music Chapel and the Musikhochschule Frankfurt. Prize winner of several competitions, he was a laureate at the Vieuxtemps National Violin Competition, De Bériot National Violin Competition, Chostakovich International Quartet Competition (Moscow) and the 1st Institut International Violin Competition Gdansk (Poland). As soloist, he performed with the Flemish Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Charlemagne Orchestra and the Ensemble Sturm&Klang. As a chamber musician, he was a member of the Kryptos Quartet and now a founding member of the Taurus Quartet, performing regularly with other ensembles such as the Ensemble Modern, Ictus, Oxalys, Het Collectief etc. Vincent Hepp is teaching at the Liège and Brussels Royal Conservatoires where he also serve in 2016-17 as viola professor.

Clément Holvoet - viola

Principal Leader of the viola section for the Europe Summer Tour 2016 with the European Union Youth Orchestra for concert tours in Europe and USA, violist Clément Holvoet, born in Belgium in 1989, leads a highly diversified musical life and has appeared in many chamber music festivals in Belgium and abroad, playing alongside established artists such as Daniel Rubenstein, David Cohen, Vladimir Mendelssohn, Jérôme Pernoo or Sergey Malov. He is founder member of the newly formed “North Sea Ensemble”, a European based Quartet, and of the Amethys Trio, with Camille Babut du Marès and Kacper Nowak, performing also last season in the Bell'Arte Frankfurt RheinMain to play Reger and Brahms String Sextets with Natalia Lomeiko among others. Graduated from the Mons Royal Conservatory and the “École Normale de Musique de Paris” with Great Distinction, he regularly takes part in concerts with the Brussels Chamber Orchestra and the Royal Chamber Orchestra of Wallonia.

Johannes Burghoff - cello

Passionate about chamber music, Johannes Burghoff performed as soloist or as a chamber musician in famous concert halls such as the Tonhalle (Zürich), the Lincoln Center (New-York), the Arts-Center of Seoul etc. Coming from a family of musicians, Johannes Burghoff graduated from Liège and Strasbourg in the classes of Marise Douin and Marc Coppey. Founder of the Trio Mistral, piano trio performing regularly on different continents, a member of the Prosperus4 string quartet, he is also a member of the Ensemble Linea (Strasbourg) and the Concert Olympique (Antwerp). As a chamber musician, he performed with musicians such as Maiko Inoue, Tatiana Samouil, Alissa Margulis, Philippe Graffin, Anne Cambier, Mario Caroli, Aldo Baerten, Marcio Carneiro, Olivier Piguet, Pablo Marquèz, Misha Besverkny, Diederik Suys, Tony Nys, Sheva Tehoval, Ning Kam and others. His discography of more then 10 CD's (labels BMI, UT3-record etcs.) includes works by Beethoven, Bruch, Rachmaninov, Dvorak, Shostakovitch, Mozart... Artistic director of the « Festival International de musique à Jodoigne » (Belgique) , Johannes Burghoff plays on a 1733 cello made by Januarius Gagliano.

Catherine Lebrun - cello

Cello-solo during 2 years of the Guayaquil Symfony Orchestra in Equator with which she travelled throughout South America, Catherine Lebrun has been a Laureate of the Pro Civitate National Competition (now Belfius Classics) and the Fondation Belge de la Vocation. As a chamber musician, she performed during 6 years extensively chamber music at the Queen Elisabeth Chapelle. A founding member of the Ensemble Mendelssohn, she is also a member of several chamber music groups such as the Trio Vidas, Sturm und Klang, Franchomme Duo, Limoncello Quartet as well as with pianist Michel Laurent. Graduated with Honor of the Brussels Royal Conservatory, she also received a Virtuoso Diploma in cello at the Ghent Royal Conservatory. Since last year, she explores the world of baroque music. Catherine Lebrun is an active pedagogue, and have been teaching cello and chamber music at the Namur Hight Institute of Music (IMEP - Belgium), as well as cello pedagogy at the Brussels Royal Conservatory. 

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Partners

Raphaël Aubry

Violist based in Paris, a Recipient of the Cziffra Foundation and a member during 9 years of the Gaudi Quartet as well as a Residence artist at the Abbaye de la Prée, Raphaël Aubry graduated from the Versailles and the Rotterdam Conservatory where he studied with Jean-Jacques Kantorow, receving further advises from the Borodine Quartet and the ProQuartet. He performed in numerous important venues and festivals together with International artists such as Dominique de Williencourt, Christophe Coin, Jean Ferrandis, Emmanuel Rossfelder, Ludmila Berlinskaïa, Jean-Marc Luisada, Caroline Sagemman, Frédéric Laroque, Philippe Muller, etc. He also created works by well-kowned composers and is a member of the Quatuor 132.

Jean-Michel Dayez

Winner of the International compétition of Antwerp, of the Meyer et Emile Bernheim Foundations, pianist Jean-Michel Dayez perform regularly in solo, or in chamber music. Member of the Trio Leos with avec Guillaume Lafeuille and Pablo Schatzman, he works also with the Jongleurs du collectif du petit travers, give numerous recitals with singers, comedians, videos etc. His discography inludes the complete works for cello and piano by Gabriel Fauré, the complete sonatas for cello and piano by Beethoven, a CD dedicated to composer Vincent Paulet, and the 3 first piano trios by Beethoven etc. published by the labels Zig-zag territoires, Contréclisse and Hortus. 

Taras Demchyshyn

Born in Lviv (Ukraine), Taras Demchyshyn is Principal clarinettist of the Kyushu Symphony Orchestra (Japan), guest Principal clarinettist of the New Japan Philharmonic and a Yamaha Official Clarinet Artist. Taras Demchyshyn won several International prizes, among them the First prize in the Da Ponte-Stiftung Competition and Oberstdorf Musiksommer Seminar Competition as well as the First prize at the 12th OSAKA International Music Competition (2011). He later made his conducting debut, recording and performing a Carl Stamitz Symphony and Clarinet Concerto, a CD recording which followed his World Premiere recording of "14 Grandes Etudes" and the album "Agora" with the "Custum Winds" woodwind quintet (ALM Records).

Jean-Marc Fessard

Representing the great tradition of the French clarinet school at the International Congress of Phoenix (USA), Jean-Marc Fessard won several International prizes : 1st prize of Concours d’Interprétation Jacques Lancelot, 1st Prize Illzach and 1st Prize Gdańsk. He now leads an international career both in chamber music and as a soloist accompanied by prestigious ensembles and International orchestras. Frequently on the Polish radio and television, BBC and Radio France, his discography of 30 CD’s received excellent reviews and prizes such as the « Grand Prix de l’Académie Charles Cros ». Jury member of International competitions, author of several books, among others « The Evolution of the Clarinet » (Billaudot Paris), he recorded in 2017 works by Anna Segal with the Ensemble Mendelssohn with which other projects are planned for 2018.

Sander Geerts

Principal viola of the Royal Flemish Philharmonic Orchestra, a Prize Winner of the Lionel Tertis International Viola Competition (UK), he also won the Grand Prix at the International competition of young performers (chamber ensemble section) in Madeira (Portugal) before winning the First Prize in the Schlern International Competition (Italy). As a soloist, he performed with orchestras such as the Royal Flemish Philharmonic and the Baden-Baden Philharmonic. His ‘Duo Agineko' with pianist Yasuko Takahashi became finalist at the International Johannes Brahms Competition in Pörtschach (Austria) before winning the 1st Absolute Prize and the Special Prize 'Chamber Music' at the Young Musician International Competition in Barletta (Italy).

Koenraad Hofman

Koenraad Hofman has been Solo-bassist of the Amsterdam Sinfonietta string orchestra, of the European Union Chamber Orchestra before becoming Solo-bassist at the Flanders Symphony Orchestra. As a dedicated chamber musician, he performed in chamber music concerts all over Europe, South Africa, the United States, Russia, Georgia, Japan, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Bangladesh, Panama, Jamaica and South America. Koenraad Hofman is a member of Oxalys, and performs also regularly with the Ensemble Mendelssohn, the Danel quartet etc. Koenraad Hofman teach double-bass at the Royal Conservatory of Ghent.

Masahiro Kawakami

Professor at the renowned College of Music of Tokyo, President of the Japan National Society of Kapustin, pianist Masahiro Kawakami have established himself as one of the best interpreters of great Russian composers in Japan. Born in Hokkaido Japan, 4th prize at the International Maria Canals Competition, Barcelona (1988), he released 6 CDs including music of Balakirev, Scriabin, Medtner, and Kapustin. He gives numerous concerts including piano ensembles, chamber music, and performances as a soloist with major orchestras in Japan. He has jointly edited several new scholarly editions of piano works of Medtner and Nikolai Kapustin (Zen-on, PRHYTHM EDITION), also has published an essay book "Chotto Piano-Honkide Piano".

Ayşegül Kirmanoğlu

Born in Istanbul, Principal clarinetist of the Istanbul State Symphony and Tekfen Philharmonic Orchestra, First prize of the Leopold Bellan competition in Paris, Ayşegül Kirmanoğlu was the very first to play the clarinet concertos of composers such as A. Copland, G. Finzi and C.V. Stanford in Turkey. She performed in many countries such as France, Russia, England, Ecuador, China, and throughout Turkey. In 2010 she recorded her first CD with the flutist Sibel Kumru Pensel, the conductor Naci Ozguc and the Mersin Chamber Orchestra, later on recording 2 CDs of chamber music : Nice'tanbul and Trio Giocoso. In 2014 she won the first prize of Year's best wind instrument performer at Donizetti Classical Music Awards organised by Andante classical music magazine

Yasuko Takahashi

Yasuko Takahashi is an internationally outstanding pianist, specialized in chamber music. After receiving several national competition prizes in Japan, she terminated her study at the Royal Music Conservatory in Antwerp. As Duo Agineko together with violist Sander Geerts, she won several international competition prizes, such as 'the international competition of young performers' in Madeira (Portugal), 'the Young Musician International Competition for Chamber Music' in Barletta (Italy), and 'the International Brahms Competition' (Austria). Currently she is also a member of the Danish soloists’ association ‘Solistforeningen’, and plays many chamber music concerts in throughout Europe.

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Composers

Guillaume Auvray

Guillaume Auvray is a Dublin-based multi-awarded Belgian composer, conductor and Extended Realities enthusiast. His compositional career embraces both large and small-scale choral works, orchestral and instrumental pieces and music for visual media. Expert in music and sound editing software, with experience handling a wide variety of programs to compose, synthesise, and revise music, his music has already been played by several ensembles throughout Europe. His increased use of technology in his compositions has impacted his thought processes and his compositions, wherein spatialisation and interactivity are now key. His work Timbres Electroacoustiques N.1 for string quintet and electronics has been premiere recorded by the Ensemble Mendelssohn.

Jean-Pierre Deleuze

Belgian composer Jean-Pierre Deleuze's approach has been influenced by his early musical experiences with Olivier Messiaen with whom he studied at the Centre Acanthes (FR), Alexander Scriabine latest works as well as the discovery of the Oriental and Asian musical references. His approach for micro-tonal music and researches on the use of harmonics give his music a personal and colorful harmonic color. In 2014, he was the winner of the "Sabam Awards" for contemporary music. A faculty member of the Royal Conservatory of Brussels and now at the Mons Royal Conservatory (BE), his works are dedicated essentially to chamber music. His piano quintet «Vues sur le jardin de lumière» (2009) was written for the Ensemble Mendelssohn.

Jacqueline Fontyn

Former composition professor at the Royal Conservatory of Brussels, she is a regular guest of universities and conservatoires in Europe, the USA, Israël, Egypt, Asia and New Zealand. Among her numerous awards, most notably the Spanish Oscar Espla Prize and the Prix Arthur Honegger (France). Her Violin Concerto has been the imposed work for the 1976 Queen Elisabeth Music Competition, and has twice undertaken commissions from the Koussevitsky Music Foundation in the Library of Congress of Washington where most of her manuscripts are hosted since 2006. A member of the Belgian Royal Academy, she was granted in 1993 by the King of Belgium the title of baroness in recognition of her artistic merit. In 2019, she will adapt her quintet "Sul Cuor Della Terra" for the Ensemble Mendelssohn.

Hajime Fukagawa

Japanese composer and arranger Hajime Fukagawa graduated from the Senzoku Gakuen College of Music in Jazz composition, and worked as an Assistant in charge of arranging music for all stage performances. As a composer and an arranger, he was commissioned works focusing on Chamber music, also arranging music for concerts, stages and recordings, mainly Classical music but also Jazz, Musicals, Japanese music and other various types of music. Hajime Fukawa participated in Oita Arts and Culture Festival as an arranger in 2010. His Quartet for 2 violins, cello & piano was written at the request of pianist Masahiro Kawakami who gave the Premiere in Tokyo with members of the Ensemble Mendelssohn.

Ola Gjeilo

Born in Norway, a full-time music composer based in New York City, Ola Gjeilo is currently composer-in-residence with Voces8 and DCINY. Also very interested in film, his albums include Ola Gjeilo on the Decca Classics label, a portrait of his choral and piano works featuring Tenebrae and Voces8. His debut recording as a composer and pianist, the lyrical crossover album Stone Rose, was followed by its 2012 sequel Piano Improvisations, both on the 2L label. Phoenix Chorale’s bestselling Northern Lights collection of Ola’s choral music on Chandos was named iTunes Best Classical Vocal Album of 2012. His works are published by Walton Music, wind band works by Boosey & Hawkes, and piano pieces by Edition Peters. "Brooklyn" for piano quintet was written for the Ensemble Mendelssohn.

Michel Lysight

Belgo-canadian composer and conductor Michel Lysight was awarded the Silver Medal at the International competition for composers of the Académie Internationale de Lutèce in Paris (FR), the Trophée Fuga 1997 by the Union of Belgian Composers, and was nominated at the « Octaves de la Musique 2012 » (contemporary music category). One of the major personalities in New Consonant Music in Belgium, he wrote about 100 works, many recorded on CDs. Professor at the Royal Brussels Conservatory, former composer in residence in the Conservatoire “Darius Milhaud” in Paris (FR) and guest professor at the Bilkent University of Ankara (Turkey). The Ensemble Mendelssohn premiered and recorded his "3 Croquis" for string quintet as well as "Hexagramme" for string sextet dedicated to the Ensemble Mendelssohn. 

Stéphane Orlando

Since his first piano lessons at the age of 7, Belgian composer Stéphane Orlando has been composing and improvising music. In November of 2001, he became an improviser at the Royal Film Archive of Belgium (Cinematek), providing accompaniment for over 500 silent films. Stéphane Orlando divides his time between music composition, his improvised concerts, and the teaching of song writing, improvisation, piano, music history and computer music. He is president of the Belgian Composers Forum and president of the Belgian Society for Musical Analysis (Société Belge d’Analyse Musicale). His piano quintet "Taïko" is written for the Ensemble Mendelssohn who gave the World Creation in Japan in November 2016.

Anna Segal

Critically acclaimed Israeli composer Anna Segal is a versatile composer that has been performed in Important Venues by many orchestras, ensembles, soloists choirs and singers, for instance : Berliner Symphoniker (conducted by Lior Shambadal at the Berlin Philharmonie), London Mozart Players, Trier Philharmonic Orchestra, Ukraine National Philharmonic Orchestra, Kiev Camerata, Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra, Irkutsk Philharmonic Orchestra, Daego Chamber Orchestra (KR), Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra, Baskent Chamber Orchestra (TR) as well as by Uwe Komischke, Paul Archibald, Ramon Jaffe, Wolfgang Weigel etc. In 2017, the Ensemble Mendelssohn created her Il Walzer del le Rondini for clarinet & strings, and recorded as World Premiere 2 of her recent septets.

Hao-Fu Zhang

Born in 1952 in Xi'An (China), Hao-Fu Zhang won many prizes including the 4th prize of the International Composition Competition of the Havre, and the Vantino Bucchi International Competition in Roma etc. Composer of the Philharmonic Orchestra of the Radio of China (Beijing), his works has been performed in many international festivals accros Europe, Asia and North America, collaborating also with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, the National Orchestra of Belgium, the Hong Kong Chinese Orchestra, the Symphony orchestras of Beijing, Shanghai... His string quartets has been recorded by the Quatuor Danel (label Cyprès) among other CD's. The Ensemble Mendelssohn will give the Premiere of his piano quintet at the Festival Loop 2019.

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