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30 April 2015
""...magnificent recording with all of its articulatory and expressive glow, its drive and finesse, its charme between posh and brisk...""Concerto, 01-3-2016
The lyrical tenor Markus Miesenberger received his education as a singer in Vienna with KS Robert Holl, KS Artur Korn and Sebastian Vittucci as well as in the fields violin and baroque viola with Ernst Kovacic and Michi Gaigg in Salzburg, Linz and Vienna.
Appearances as a concert and lied singer, in operas and as a musician led the artist through Austria, to important European music centres in Germany, France, Spain, Italy, the Netherlands, Belgium, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Switzerland, to Israel, to Mexico and to many more. Thus, it was and is beside regular appearances at the Viennese music association and at the Viennese concert hall to guest with numerous festivals (Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes Mexico City, Festival Oude Muziek Utrecht, MA Festival Brugge, Salzburger Festspiele, Styriarte, Carinthischer Sommer, Schubertiaden Schwarzenberg and Dürnstein, Brucknerfest Linz, Handel Festival Halle, Internationales Musikfest Hamburg, Musica antiqua of the bavarian broadcast Nürnberg, National forum of music Wroclaw, Settimana Musica Sacra di Monreale, Misteria Paschalia Krakow). He sings under the baton of famous conductors like Christian Thielemann, Pierre Andre Valade, Ralf Weikert, Andrés Orozco-Estrada, Jeffrey Kahane, Gunar Letzbor, Michi Gaigg and Rubén Dubrovsky with Staatskapelle Dresden, Vienna and Hamburg Symphonic Orchestra, Ars Antiqua Austria, L’Orfeo Baroque Orchestra, Bach Consort Vienna, Wroclaw Baroque Orchestra and Slovac Philharmonic Orchestra. There is also a strong artistic connection in the field of lied to his former teacher Robert Holl and the pianists David Lutz und Sir András Schiff.
On the opera stage Markus Miesenberger is to be experienced above all in roles of the Mozart’s and Haydn’s field, with baroque opera, with opera of the 20th century and with contemporary music. Engagements led him to the Neue Oper Wien, to the Theater an der Wien, to the Landestheater Linz, to the municipal theatre Bolzano and to the Tirol festival. He sang Ferrando in Mozart’s Cosi fan tutte at Opernfestspiele Bad Hersfeld, 2018 and 2019 Jack O’Brian in Kurt Weills Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny at Laeiszhalle Hamburg and Balthasar Zorn in Richard Wagners Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg with Staatskapelle Dresden under the baton of Christian Thielemann at Osterfestspiele Salzburg, also released on CD, and 2020 at Semperoper Dresden.
In 2011 he won the Franz Joseph Aumann Prize for new discoveries and innovative interpretation of baroque music at the international H.I.F. Biber competition.
Numerous CD productions and radio broadcasts also form a central focus of his artistic career, currently Arias for Silvio Garghetti with Neue Wiener Hofkapelle, Kriegsgeschichten and Liebesabenteuer with music from G.D. Speer with Ars Antiqua Austria (PANCLASSICS) and Psalms for Sacri Concentus 1681 (Challenge Classics).
As a harpsichordist and organist Erich Traxler mainly deals with music between around 1600 and 1800. His main focus in the interpretation is on the exploration of the "musical craft" as a basis for music in the Baroque age as well as the immediate linguistic in the music into the 19th century.
His concert career includes performances as soloist on harpsichord and organ as well as chamber musician with various formations (eg L'Orfeo Baroque Orchestra, Ars Antiqua Austria, Accentus Austria, Bach Consort Vienna, Venice Baroque Orchestra, Ensemble saitsiing, musica novantica vienna, Ensemble Castor) , Previous tours have taken him to most European countries as well as to the USA, South America, South Africa and Japan. Numerous CD and radio recordings (ORF, Gramola, WDR, Upper Austria organ organ) document his activity.
Erich Traxler received his musical education in Linz and Vienna u. a. Michael Radulescu, August Humer, Wolfgang Glüxam, Gordon Murray, Brett Leighton and Augusta Campagne. A postgraduate degree led him to Basel to the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis, where he got important impulses from musicians such as Andrea Marcon, Wolfgang Zerer, Jean-Claude Zehnder and Jesper Christensen. As organist he won 1st prizes at international competitions for organ (Goldrain / I 2003, Bochum / D 2005).
From 2013 to 2018 Erich Traxler worked as a professor for harpsichord at the Music and Art University of Vienna (MUK). Since 2018 he is at the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna (mdw). He also taught at masterclasses in Belgrade, Notre Dame University, USA, and Stellenbosch University in South Africa.
Franz von Biber, he might as well be called 'the Jimi Hendrix of the 17th century'. His virtuosity on violin was unprecedented, and he combined this with a passion for experimentation which is just as remarkable. With his violin skills, Biber's social status quickly improved. After working as the 'musician in residence' for the bishop of Olmütz, he consecutively worked for the archbishop of Salzburg and, as a kapellmeister, for Emperor Leopold I. Biber was a religious man, and it can't be a coincidence both his daughters (he also had two sons) lived in a monastery. Biber composed both instrumental als vocal music. The pinnacles of his body of works are undoubtedly his Rosary Sonatas and his Missa Salisburgensis. The former shows Biber's virtuosity as a compositional art; the latter shows, with its enourmous instrumentation, the capabilities of Biber as a grandiose composer.
"...magnificent recording with all of its articulatory and expressive glow, its drive and finesse, its charme between posh and brisk..."
['']...Wonderfully clear and detailed,Challenge Classic's surround-sound recording perfectly complements the ensemble's incisive vitality...['']
BBC Music Magazine, 01-11-2015
['']...You don't have to listen to all the sonatas at once, of course, though in truth even on repeated listenings the sheer robust joy and commitment of Ars Antiqua's performances are hard to resist...['']
On the one hand they demonstrate the harmonic abundance in a pleasant-dense ensemblesound, on the other hand they give the spirit wings and take liberties in the soloparts of the violins.
Fono Forum, 01-9-2015
"[..]'Ensemble for new baroque music.."
"Biber is in the very best hands with Gunnar Letzbor and his ensemble. The extraordinary high-quality sonatas are brought to life by the Ars Antiqua Austria congenial. The Ensemble plays the precious music with a joy for sound, sublte, with confidence and musically strong."
Sound quality 5/5
Repertoire value 4/5
"Spontanious baroque virtuoso Letzbor makes the court music of Biber sparkle and shine on his violin."