Aljaž Beguš began his musical career at the Ljubljana Moste-Polje Music School with professors Jože Kregar and Franc Tržan. At the age of thirteen, he was admitted to the Secondary School of Music and Ballet, and later to the Academy of Music in Ljubljana, where he graduated in the class of Jože Kotar. In 2008 he continued his studies at the prestigious Escuela Superior de Musica Reina Sofia in Madrid, where, in 2010, he completed his postgraduate studies in the class of Michel Arrignon. He is the recipient of five first prizes from the TEMSIG national competitions in 1995, 1998, 2001, 2004, 2005, and is also the winner of international competitions such as: Citta ’di Carlino and Marco Fiorindo. In 2005 he received the Prešeren Student Award, and two years later he was a semifinalist at the EBU New Talent Eurovision Song Contest in Bratislava. In 2014, with the wind quintet Spirito, he reached the semifinals of the ARD competition. He is very active as a chamber musician, in various ensembles he has played with musicians such as: Mate Bekavac, Dag Jensen, Nicholas Daniel, Enrico Bronzi, Bruno Canino, Dora Schwarzberg, Lorenza Borrani, Alexander Lonquich, Maria Joao Pires, Ensemble MidtVest and others . He collaborates with the orchestras Spira Mirabilis, Orchestra da Camera di Mantova, Orchestra Mozart (Bologna), English National Opera, European Union Youth Orchestra and Gustav Mahler Jugendorchester. He has performed as a soloist with the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra, RTV Slovenia Symphony Orchestra, Gustav Mahler Jugendorchester, Jeaner Philharmonie, Orquesta da camara de Escuela Superior de Musica Reina Sofia, Orchestra da Camera di Mantova, Wind Orchestra of the Academy of Music and RTV Big Band. As a member of orchestras or chamber ensembles he has performed at famous festivals: BBC Proms, Lucerne Festival, Young Euro Classics, Bolzano Festival, Mantova Chambermusic Festival, Salzburger Festspiele, Kammermusikfest Lockenhaus…
Currently he is employed as Bass clarinetist at Slovenian Philharmonic.
Jakob Bobek, born in 1982 in Slovenj Gradec, studied clarinet at the Academy of Music in Ljubljana in the class of prof. Slavko Goričar, graduated in 2005 with honors in art and pedagogy. Two years later (2007) he also completed specialist studies with the same professor. During his studies, he always won a gold plaque and three first and two second prizes at competitions for young musicians of the Republic of Slovenia. He is the recipient of the Antonia Tarsie Award, the Prešeren Student Award of the Academy of Music and the first two awards at the International Summer Academy in Raach, Austria. He also studied with Ralph Mann, Alessandro Carbonar, Charles Neidich, Sylvia Hue, Mate Bekavac, Jiři Hlavač and Sharon Kam. In many performances, both at home and elsewhere in Europe, he has performed as a soloist and chamber musician. The most resounding performances include: solo performances with the SNG Maribor Orchestra (Copland) and the RTV Slovenia Symphony Orchestra (Mozart), a performance at the 2003 World Music Days, a series of concerts with the Alamiré String Quartet at the Autumn Serenades and a postgraduate concert at the Slovenian Marjan Kozine Hall. . He has collaborated with the RTV Slovenia Symphony Orchestra, the Slovenian Philharmonic, the SNG Opera and Ballet Maribor Orchestra, the Ars Musicae Orchestra, and other occasional orchestras. He is a member of the Orchestra of the Immaginary, which performs original music as an accompaniment to silent films (In the Kingdom of the Golden Horn and Eroticon).
Since 2001 he has been teaching clarinet and chamber music at the Ljubljana Moste-Polje Music School, and since 2007 he has been regularly employed as the first clarinetist of the SNG Opera and Ballet Ljubljana.
Urška Zupan (1997) began her musical career with prof. Jože Kregar at the KGBL Music School. She continued her education at the Ljubljana Conservatory of Music and Ballet, in the class of prof. Dušan Sodja, and at the same time she attended Bežigrad Secondary Grammar School. In 2020 she graduated from the Mozarteum University of Salzburg with honors in the class of prof. Wenzl Fuchs, solo clarinetist of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. She is currently completing her postgraduate studies at the Academy of Music in Basel with Prof. Francois Benda.
She has been a member of the famous Gustav Mahler Youth Orchestra since 2022, and regularly collaborates with many other symphony and chamber orchestras, such as the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra, Mantova Chamber Orchestra, Academia Ars Musicae, Sinfonie Orchester Berlin, NOVA Youth Orchestra, Leonore Orchestra. In September 2022, she began a one-year education as an orchestral academician in the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra.
He is additionally trained in master classes with domestic and foreign clarinetists, such as Mate Bekavac, Jože Kotar and Aljaž Beguš, Charles Neidich, Paolo Beltramini, Bence Szepesi, Massimiliano Miani, Pascal Moraguez, Calogero Palermo, Davide Lattuada, Andreas Schablas Helmut Hoedl, Wolfgang Kornberger, Hubert Salmhofer.
Dušan Sodja comes from a musical family. He started his first musical steps with his father, the flutist Lovro, where he studied the recorder. He began studying clarinet with Alojz Zupan, with whom he also graduated from the Academy of Music in Ljubljana. He completed his master’s degree at the Mozarteum University in Salzburg with Alois Brandhofer, and his special studies in chamber music at the University of Music in Cologne with Anthony Spiri. He received the Prešeren Student Award in 1995 for his performance of Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto. As a soloist he has played with many orchestras: the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra, the Slovak Chamber Orchestra of Bohdan Warchal, the Cappella Istropolitano, and the Celje String Orchestra. He has been a passionate chamber musician since his student days – in 1994 he founded the Duo Claripiano together with pianist Tatjana Kaučič. They perform all over Europe and America, from Edinburgh, Stockholm, Berlin, Prague, Leipzig to Madrid, Los Angeles, Florida, Yerevan to China. Many Slovenian composers have written more than 40 new works dedicated to them, which they also recorded for Radio Slovenia. Together they recorded five CDs: Legends of 2000, for which a critic wrote in BBC Music Magazine: “Throughout the recital, both artists are brilliantly natural, which shows their genuine passion for music.” The album Meetings exclusively with compositions by Slovenian composers received excellent reviews in the American magazine The Clarinet. The Romantic Claripiano record with the most beautiful romantic sonatas was praised with the words: “The play of both performers is magical. The great variety of tonal colors from both instruments, together with the subtly nuanced phrasing, are the result of exceptional collaboration. ” Their jubilee album “20 Claripiano” was released in 2014 by ZKP RTV Slovenija. The CD “In the embrace of duality” was released in August 2017 and contains concert compositions by Slovenian composers who wrote on Slovenian folk motifs. In recent years, composers have written new concerts for clarinet, piano and various ensembles: “Claripiano” by Jani Golob, “Ta-Du” by Tomaž Habe, “We are only a shell” by Andrej Makor (with the Slovenian Philharmonic Choir). In 2020, Črt Sojar Voglar wrote “Silver Concert”, which they premiered in June 2021 with the SF Chamber String Orchestra. In March 2022, they performed for the first time the Nenad Firšt Clarinet, Piano and Strings Concerto with the Celje String Orchestra.
In 2001-2005, Dušan Sodja was an assistant professor at the “Junge Kärntner Bläserphilharmonie” in Klagenfurt, and from 2006-2018 he was a clarinet mentor at the Orchestra Camp. He has been mentor at the summer school in Terme Zreče since 2013.
He is employed in the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra and teaches clarinet at the Conservatory of Music in Ljubljana. Since 2014, he has been playing clarinets by the German manufacturer Schwenk & Seggelke.
Violinist Mojca Menoni Sikur graduated from the Academy of Music in Ljubljana in the class of Dejan Bravničar. At the same academy in 2003, she successfully completed postgraduate studies with Vasilij Meljnikov. She perfected with Pavel Vernikov at the Fondazione Musicale Santa Cecilia in Portogruaro (Italy) and at numerous international master classes with renowned professors (V. Snitil, C. Hutcap, I. Ozim, HW Meyer, D. Schwarzberg, L. Honda Rosenberg ). She is the first prize winner of the Competition of Young Musicians of Slovenia and the winner of two Prešeren Student Awards. She performs as a soloist or chamber musician at home and abroad. She plays with pianist Jerneja Grebenšek and cellist Martin Sikur in the piano trio Ars Musica. They studied together with pianist Chia Chou at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Graz. She is a member of the M.ARS String Quartet and the Artes Liberales Ensemble. Mojca Menoni Sikur is the Principal of 2nd violins in the RTV Slovenia Symphony Orchestra.
Nina Pirc started learning the violin at the Krško Music School with Suzana Drobila. She continued her education at the Secondary School of Music in Velenje (Igor Ulokin) and the Secondary School of Music and Ballet in Ljubljana (Jernej Brence). In 2011 she graduated from the Academy of Music in Ljubljana in the class of prof. Dejan Bravničar. She attends seminars at home and abroad (Isabele van Keulen, Rivka Golani, Ida Bieler, Christian Altenburger, Rainer Kussmaul, Helfried Fister, ..). As a chamber musician, she received the Prešeren Student Award for her academic achievements in 2010 with the A la corda quartet. With the string sextet Offstring, the sextet P.I. Tchaikovsky Souvenir of Florence. With the same ensemble, they were invited twice to a seminar in Schaffhausen (Ana Chumachenco, Wolfgang Boettcher, Wen-Sinn Yang, Menahem Pressler). In 2010, she successfully auditioned for Gustav Mahler Jugendorchester, where she was a member until 2013. She is a member of the M.ars String Quartet and the Adora String Quartet.
Since 2011 she has been employed in the RTV Slovenia Symphony Orchestra as the 1st tuttist.
Gea Pantner Volfand (1990) completed her postgraduate studies at the Academy of Music in Ljubljana in the class of prof. Mile Kosi. She has performed as a soloist with the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra, the RTV Slovenia Symphony Orchestra, the Young Ljubljana Soloists Orchestra, etc. She is the winner of the Škerjančeva Award of the Ljubljana Conservatory of Music and Ballet and the Prešeren Award of the Academy of Music. She is a member of the string quartet Accadémia, with which they also received the Prešeren Award of the Academy of Music. Since 2012 she has been a regular member of the RTV Slovenia Symphony Orchestra, and since 2019 she has been a solo violist. She collaborates with all Slovenian professional orchestras and regularly performs in chamber ensembles with renowned musicians such as Mate Bekavac, Irena Grafenauer, Boštjan Lipovšek, Andrej Žust and others. She was also a member of the EUYO and GMJO orchestras.
Martin Sikur studied cello with Ciril Škerjanc at the Academy of Music in Ljubljana, with Enrico Bronzi and Giovanni Gnocchi at the Fondazione Musicale Santa Cecilia in Portogruaro, and chamber music with Chia Chou at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Graz. He has received several awards and recognitions for his musical work. He studied cello and chamber music with renowned professors (H. E. Deckert, B. Gmelin, W.-S. Yang, M. Ostertag, E. Schoenfeld, T. Brandis, G. Gnocchi). From 2001 to 2005 he was a member of the Gustav Mahler Youth Orchestra. He performs as a soloist or chamber musician at home and abroad. He plays in the piano trio Ars Musica, the M.ARS String Quartet and the Artes Liberales Ensemble. Martin Sikur is a member of the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra.
Andrej Žust (1984) graduated from the music school in his native Logatec with prof. Janez Polanc, he continued his education at the Secondary School of Music and Ballet in Ljubljana with prof. Metod Tomac and then studied at the Academy of Music in Ljubljana with prof. Jože Falout and prof. Boštjan Lipovšek. He perfected his knowledge with renowned professors: Hermann Baumann, Radovan Vlatković, Froydis Ree Wekre,… For two years he was a scholarship holder of the prestigious Karajan Academy of the Berlin Philharmonic (2009-2011). As a soloist, he won three national competitions for young musicians (1996, 1999, 2001 – he received an absolute 100 points) and the international competition in Udine (Italy), where he received two special awards in addition to the first prize and was declared the absolute winner. competitions. As a chamber musician, he won the national chamber music competition in 2004 with the horn quartet, in 2006 with the wind quintet, in 2006 he was a quarterfinalist in the prestigious ARD competition with the Savitra wind quintet, and most recently in the Young Talent competition in Bratislava. He is a very active chamber musician, regularly performing at international festivals around the world. As a member of the world-famous Gustav Mahler Youth Orchestras (GMJO) and the Pacific Music Festival (PMF), he has collaborated with the most eminent conductors and soloists. He has performed as a soloist with the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra, the Berliner Barock Solisten Orchestra, the Russian State Orchestra, the Mito Chamber Orchestra, the Slovenian Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra, the Zadar Chamber Orchestra, the SNG Maribor Orchestra, the Russian State Orchestra and the Orchestra. , as well as novelties by domestic and foreign composers. For his achievements, he received the Škrjanč Award from the SGBŠ Ljubljana, the Prešeren Award from the University of Ljubljana and the Beetet Award. For many years he was the solo horn player of the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra, he also collaborated with the RTV Slovenia Symphony Orchestra and the Ljubljana Opera Orchestra.
Since 2011 he has been a member of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra.
Ana Mir, born in 2000, began her musical studies at the Škofja Loka Music School and then continued her musical education at the Conservatory of Music and Ballet in Ljubljana in the class of Professor Metod Tomac. After finishing high school, she enrolled at the Academy of Music in Ljubljana, where she is currently a third-year student with Professor Boštjan Lipovšek. She is the recipient of various awards and recognitions at international and national competitions. Among other things, in 2019 she won a silver medal at the Temsig competition with the Et Cetera horn quartet. In the same year, they performed as soloists with the KGBL Symphony Orchestra. In 2020, she received first prize and a gold award at the Temsig National Competition. She participates in various chamber ensembles, orchestras and as a versatile musician she often collaborates with various orchestras in Slovenia and abroad, including the Slovenian Philharmonic and the RTV Symphony Orchestra. In May 2021, she successfully auditioned and joined the Ljubljana Opera Orchestra. She regularly improves her knowledge with renowned professors such as Radovan Vlatković, Johannes Hinterholzer, Dale Clevenger, David Cooper, Sarah Willis, Markus Bruggaier, Szabolcs Zempléni.
Bassoonist Luka Mitev, born on December 16, 1997 in Postojna, began learning bassoon from his father Zoran Mitev. Already in his first appearances and competitions, he drew attention to himself with a convincing playing and high medals. As a soloist, he presented himself for the first time as a twelve-year-old boy with a wind orchestra and later with the Coastal Chamber Orchestra and the Postojna Music School String Orchestra. He participated in several national and international competitions and achieved high results: gold plaque and 1st prize (TEMSIG 2010, 2013, 2016), finalist of the Slovenian selection for the Eurovision Young Musician 2014 and 2016, 1st prize and laureate, 100 points. Mokranjac, Požarevac, 2006), 1st prize, 100 points (D. Jenko, Belgrade, 2007, 2010, 2013, 2014), 1st prize (OFF; Krško, 2009), finalist of the EMONA 2012 competition (4th place, Ljubljana) ) and 1st prize and special prize for the best performance of the obligatory composition at the international radio competition Concertino Prague (Prague 2013). Accompanied by the orchestra, he performed Vivaldi’s, Mozart’s, Francaix’s and Škerjanc’s concerto for bassoon. (RTV Symphony Orchestra, Czech Radio Symphony Orchestra). In 2015, he was the recipient of the Škerjančeva Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Music, awarded by the Ljubljana Conservatory of Music and Ballet. He regularly participates in international chamber festivals (Ferrara Chamber Music Academy, Ljubljana Festival, Lent Festival), in previous seasons he has also participated in major tours of the EUYO Youth Orchestra. He was invited to one of the biggest competitions “Prague Spring” and the GMJO spring tour in 2020, but both events were postponed or canceled due to the pandemic. He is a scholarship holder of the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Slovenia to study at the Mozarteum University in Salzburg with Professor Marc Postinghel, where he completed his undergraduate studies with honors in June 2021. He continues his studies in Berlin with Professor Volker Tessmann. He successfully auditioned for the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra – Karajan Akademie der Berliner Philharmoniker – starting in January 2022. He regularly attends numerous seminars and studies with renowned musicians and professors (Sergio Azzolini, Gustavo Núñez, Giorgio Mandoles Stefano Canuti, Radovan Vlatković, Stefan Schilli, Ole Christian Dahl).