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Ernst Kovacic


Photo: Łukasz Rajchert

Vienna and its inspiring tension between tradition and modernity were the musical background in which Ernst Kovacic grew up and in which he has developed his perspective on form, sound and interpretation. Thanks to performances of J.S. Bach’s solo sonatas and Mozart’s violin concertos, as well as involvement in the field of new music, Kovacic quickly gained a high position among the violinists of his generation. Many composers (including Ernst Křenek, Friedrich Cerha, Gerhard Gruber, Kurt Schwertsik, and Django Bates) have composed their works specially for him. In the last concert seasons, together with Wiener Philharmoniker, London Sinfonietta and RSO Wien, he presented the premieres of violin concertos, including by Beat Furrer, Django Bates and Friedrich Cerha, and in the 2008/09 season, as part of the Wien Modern festival together with the Klangforum Wien he performed a new violin concerto by Clemens Gadenstätter. As a soloist with the best orchestras all over the world, Kovacic has played under the baton of such conductors as: Franz Welser-Möst, Sir Roger Norrington, Sir Simon Rattle, and Esa-Pekka Salonen. He has participated in numerous prestigious music festivals around the world. As a soloist and conductor, he collaborates with many renowned chamber orchestras; in the years 1996–98 he was artistic director of Wiener Kammerorchester. He has played with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, the Irish Chamber Orchestra, the English Chamber Orchestra, Royal Northern Sinfonia, Britten Sinfonia, Stuttgarter Kammerorchester, The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, Norwegian Chamber Orchestra, Klangforum Wien, Ensemble Modern, Camerata Salzburg, Camerata Bern, and Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen. In 2008, together with Steven Dann and Anssi Karttunen, he founded the Zebra Trio. From 2007 to 2014, he was artistic director of the NFM Leopoldinum Orchestra. With this ensemble he performed, among others, at Festival van Vlaanderen, Brückenfestival, Warsaw Autumn (2008) and the Ludwig van Beethoven Easter Festival (2009) in Warsaw. Together with the NFM Leopoldinum Orchestra, he has recorded compositions for strings by Křenek and Berg, published by the record label Toccata Classics, and CDs with works by Beethoven, Schoenberg and Janáček, as well as a selection of fugues. Ernst Kovacic plays a Giovanni Battista Guadagnini violin of 1753.