Miriam Allan - Soprano
Miriam Allan, a graduate student of Emma Kirkby and Julianne Baird, was a prize winner at the 2003 London Handel Society's singing competition. Since completing her studies at the University of Newcastle (Australia), she has developed a lively concert career. She has performed the most important works of Bach, Handel and Purcell with such leading choirs and orchestras as the Australian Chamber Orchestra and the Sydney Philharmonia. Additionally and this is quite unusual for such a young singer she gives recitals. These are mostly devoted to the repertoire of the 17th and 18th centuries.
Michael Chance - Countertenor
Michael Chance's carrier began, as did so many of his colleagues, in King's College, Cambridge, as countertenor in England's conceivably most famous choir. Today he is one of the worlds most sought after countertenors, not only for opera - he sang, for example, the military governor in the world première of Judith Weir's "A Night at the Chinese Opera" - but also for oratorios and songs. He is a visiting professor at the Royal College of Music, London. He performs often in Paris, Amsterdam, Stuttgart and Berlin and has also been in America, Japan and Australia many times. Frieder Bernius, Frans Brüggen, John Eliot Gardiner and Trevor Pinnock are just some of the conductors that he works with regularly. A specialty of Michael Chance's is the song evenings he gives with the Gamben-Consort Fretwork, Nigel North and, more recently, Roger Vignoles, in which he sings pieces for voice and lute from the English Renaissance and also, frequently, works from contemporary, mostly English composers.
Michael Chance (left) and Mark Le Brocq (right) during the performance
of "The Messiah" at the church of Monastery Maulbronn.
Mark Le Brocq - Tenor
Mark Le Brocq held a choral scholarship at St Catherine's College, Cambridge where he read English. He won several prizes and awards at the Royal Academy of Music including the Blyth Buesset Opera Prize, the Royal Academy of Music Club Prize and the Worshipful Company of Musicians' Medal. He was formerly a company principal with the English National Opera. Over the years, the tenor has worked together with many important directors, including David Alden, David Poutney, Jonathan Miller, Niklaus Lehnhoff, Graham Vick and David Freeman. He performed regularly with the Gabrieli Consort under Paul McCreesh. He sang with Monserat Caballé and Dennis O' Neill in Verdi Opera Galas in Bath, the Mozart and the Verdi Requiems in the Barbican Centre, London and the Mozart Requiem with The English Concert under Trevor Pinnock in Salzburg.
Christopher Purves - Bass
Christopher Purves received vocal instruction from David Keren and Diane Forlano. He made his solo debut at the 1988 Aix-en-Provence Festival, appearing in a Mozart program with "The Sixteen" ensemble under the direction of Harry Christophers. He has appeared as soloist in numerous operas (including works by Mozart and Monteverdi) and major Handel oratorios. He has made an earlier appearance in Maulbronn in a production of Judas Maccabaeus. His concert engagements have taken him to major concert halls throughout the world in the company of such ensembles and conductors as The Sixteen, Philippe Herreweghe, Richard Hickox, the Gabrieli Consort Covent Garden, John Taverner and the Academy of Ancient Music.
Hanoverian Court Orchestra (Hannoversche Hofkapelle)
The Hanoverian Court Orchestra maintains the tradition of the historic court orchestras and performs with both chamber and symphonic instrumentation. The fact that its members also play in other European Baroque formations, helps forge the sound of the ensemble. The repertoire of the Hanoverian Court Orchestra not only incorporates Baroque music in all its forms, but also Romantic pieces and Classical works, especially Mozart's operas and the Romantic genre. The continual involvement with the music of the 17th and 18th century has allowed each of the Court Orchestra's musicians to become a master of his instrument. From this emerges the expressive and elegant playing that allows the Hanoverian Court Orchestra to maintain its prominent position.
Maulbronn Chamber Choir
The Maulbronn Chamber Choir was founded by its director, Jürgen Budday, in 1983 and is one of the top choirs in Germany today. In addition to learning a baroque oratorio, the ensemble compiles a sacred and secular a-cappella programme every year, its focal point being 19th and 20th century literature. First prize at the Baden Württemberg Choir Competition in 1989 and 1997, second prize at the Third German Choir Competition in Stuttgart in 1990, and a victory at the Fifth German Choir Competition in Regensburg in 1998 document the chamber choir's extraordinary musical standard. The Maulbronn Chamber Choir has received, among others, invitations to the Ettlingen Palace Festival, the chamber music series of the Dresden Philharmonic, the cloister concerts at the Walkenried convent, the First International Festival of Sacred Music in Rottenburg, and the European Music Festival in Passau. The choir has also made a name for itself internationally. The 1983 debut tour through the USA with concerts in, among others, New York and Indianapolis, and the participation in the Festival of Music in New Harmony, Indiana, as well as concert tours through numerous European countries, Israel, Argentina (1993 and 1997), South Africa, and Namibia (2001) were all greeted with similar enthusiasm by the public and critics alike. The third tour through South America followed in autumn 2003 with concerts in Argentina and Uruguay.
Jürgen Budday (Conductor)
Jürgen Budday is director of church music and artistic director of the concert series at the monastery of Maulbronn, of the cantor choir and of the Maulbronn Chamber Choir. He studied music education, church music and musicology at the Academy of Music in Stuttgart and, since 1979, has taught at the Evangelic Theology Seminar in Maulbronn. For his teaching and artistic activity, he has received many awards, including the Bundesverdienstkreuz am Bande (German Cross of Merit) and the Bruno-Frey Prize from the State Academy, Ochsenhausen. Since 2002, Jürgen Budday has also held the chair of the choral committee of the German Music Council. Several concert recordings have been made under his artistic direction. They have often received international recognition and high praise from critics. These have included the Handel oratorios "Samson", "Judas Maccabaeus", "Saul", "Solomon" and "Belshazzar" with Emma Kirkby, Michael Chance, Nancy Argenta and Stephen Varcoe.