Described by Classical Music magazine as a musician of “dazzling commitment and versatility,” Dr. Charles Stolte enjoys a career as a saxophonist and composer that takes him throughout the world. He has performed for—and his compositions have been performed for—such musical luminaries as Jean-Marie Londeix, Claude Delangle, Marta Ptasynska, Gunther Schuller, Ned Rorem, Frederick Rzewski, John Corigliano and Henryk Gorecki. Glowing reviews in the Chicago Tribune laud him as a “talented performer with glossy technique and bluesy charm,”and he enjoys frequent support from the Canadian provincial and national governments for his composition projects and performance tours. In 2006 and 2009, Dr. Stolte enjoyed financial support from Canada Council for the Arts and Alberta Foundation for the Arts for tours of Canadian music through Germany and Poland and in 2008 was a distinguished teacher of saxophone at the XII Woodwind Workshop in Szczecinek, Poland. In 2000, Canada Council for the Arts awarded an Outreach Grant supporting the premiere in Montréal of Last Transfer, his large work for saxophone quartet, two pianos and two percussion and The Alberta Foundation for the Arts (2009, 2006, 2004) and Royal Canadian College of Organists (2008, 2006) have funded commissions for several recent works for organ, string orchestra, guitar, saxophone, horn, recorder and a recently premiered concerto for saxophone and orchestra.
CBC radio has broadcast his performances and compositions nationally and his music enjoys performances across North America and in Europe. He can be heard on a variety of recordings as a saxophone soloist, in the Stolte/Segger Duo with pianist Joachim Segger, as alto saxophonist with the Edmonton Saxophone Quartet and as a member of Ensemble Mujirushi, Edmonton’s “New Music Supergroup” (Edmonton Journal). Stolte has presented his own music, and music written for him, at conferences throughout North America and he was a featured composer and performer at World Saxophone Congresses XII and XIII in Montréal and Minneapolis, respectively.
Dr. Stolte is Associate Professor of Saxophone, Music Theory and Composition at The King's University and Instructor of Saxophone at Grant MacEwan Alberta College Conservatory of Music. He has served on the faculties of Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Roosevelt University and the University of Alberta. He holds a Doctor of Music degree in Saxophone Performance from Northwestern University, where he was the first Canadian to be accepted to the doctoral program for study with renowned saxophonist Frederick L. Hemke. Dr. Stolte also holds degrees from University of Alberta and The King’s University College. His teachers include Frederick L. Hemke, William H. Street, Howard Bashaw, Malcolm Forsyth, M. William Karlins and Jay Alan Yim.
Viktoria Reiswich-Dapp’s extraordinary artistry has been recognized with national and international prizes and enthusiastic praise. The Frankfurter Neue Presse, for example, salutes her “high-profile skills”, while the Pforzheimer Zeitung celebrates her “clarity of touch…stylistic sense…[and] breathtaking suppleness”, and the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung proclaims that Viktoria is “an impeccable soloist”. In addition to being a soloist, she has performed with orchestras and in various chamber music formations in Canada, the U.S., Austria, Germany, Israel, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Poland, Russia, Türkiye, Croatia and Uzbekistan, and has recorded CDs in Germany, Canada and Poland. Viktoria has an unusually wide range of accomplishments and her education reflects a breadth and variety of traditions.
She received her early training in the Soviet Union before being accepted at 13 as a pre-student at the University of Music in Karlsruhe (Germany) where she studied with Sontraud Speidel, herself a student of distinguished teachers Yvonne Loriod-Messiaen, Branka Musulin and Géza Anda. Viktoria continued her studies with Irina Edelstein, a student of Jacob Milstein, and Joachim Volkmann, a student of Wilhelm Kempff, at the Frankfurt University of Music and Performing Arts from where she graduated with Diplomas (Master’s equivalent) in piano performance and in piano pedagogy. She came to Canada as the first and only performer to be awarded the prestigious Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship to study at the University of Alberta under Jacques Després, a student of György Sebök and Gilbert Kalish. Her Doctor of Music in piano performance reflects her investigation of intermedial performance strategies that combine music with various media, explore the tension between the live and the mediatized, and reveal the socio-cultural context of both work and performance.
Viktoria’s formal training on three continents has sparked her curiosity for a wide range of genres and styles, including new music and its expansion of musical aesthetics. Every culture and environment has its own ideas and conventions, and she believes that these differences enrich and invigorate musical expression and performance. Viktoria continues to include contemporary works in her solo and chamber music recitals, inviting the audience to experience such nuances on a musical level.
She has also a special love and passion for Art Song. She worked on Art Song with esteemed faculty including Elly Ameling, Barbara Bonney, Julius Drake, Rudolf Jansen, and Helmut Deutsch at the Franz-Schubert-Institute in Baden, Vienna. She has extensive teaching and vocal coaching experience in three languages and is especially passionate about exploring the intricate interaction of poetry and music, particularly in her native languages of Russian and German.
Viktoria has a deep commitment to music education. She teaches piano performance, vocal and instrumental chamber music, piano literature, and piano pedagogy at the University of Alberta, and frequently shares her experiences in lectures and masterclasses at conferences around the world. She is honoured to be able to contribute to the Edmonton music community both as conference convener for the Alberta Registered Music Teachers Association (ARMTA) and as a board member of the Anne Burrows Foundation which supports young musicians from Edmonton and surrounding area.
Iwona Kisiel (b. 1972) Polish composer, arranger, a graduate of the Fryderyk Chopin Academy of Music in Warsaw in the class of composition of Professor Zbigniew Rudziński. Her music is based on tonal harmony, an unabashed characteristic of all her works. 20th-Century music, jazz, and film soundtracks have had the biggest influence on the composer’s idiom. Classically understood tonality is the basis on which the composer creates polytonal harmonic combinations, also employing jazz-specific harmonic language based on 9th and 7th chords. Her style is characterised by marriage of dissonance with consonance, and a palette of strong, dynamic emotions. She has written for orchestra, chamber and string orchestra, chamber ensembles, as well as a considerable number of vocal and solo works. In February 2020, the world premiere of the work Once Upon the Sea…, composed especially for the centenary of Poland's return to the Baltic, took place in the European Parliament in Brussels. Iwona has also composed more than sixty jazz and pop songs, and two mini-operas for children. Endowed with absolute pitch, she has a gift of chromesthesia, i.e. associating sound with colours.
Aleksandra Joanna Garbal, Polish composer, pianist, harpsichordist, singer, music theorist and teacher. She is a graduate of the Karol Szymanowski Academy of Music in Katowice, Poland, where she received degrees in music theory (1996), composition (1998), harpsichord (1998), and piano (2005). She also completed Postgraduate Music Theory Studies (2000) and Postgraduate Composition Studies (2012) at the Fryderyk Chopin University of Music in Warsaw under the supervision of Professor Marian Borkowski. She is a member of the Polish Composers' Union, and the Polish Society for Contemporary Music. Aleksandra received multiple scholarships from, among others, Poland’s Ministry of Culture and Art; the Janaček Academy of Musical Arts in Brno, Czech Republic; the Academy of Music in Rheinsberg, Germany; the Gaudeamus Foundation in Amsterdam, Holland; and the Society of Authors ZAiKS, Poland. She composes solo, chamber, choral, symphonic, instrumental, vocal and vocal-instrumental music, both religious and secular.
Alicja Gronau-Osińska (b. 1957), Polish composer and music theorist. She won awards at numerous composers’ competitions at home and abroad. Her works have been performed in Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, France, Germany, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, and the US and her music appears on a number of commercially available CD titles; one of them received Polish recording industry’s main award, the Fryderyk Prize. Alicja’s didactic and research activities concentrate on creative teaching, Dalcroze Method, integrated education, music analysis, genre analysis, studies in 20th-Century music, and compositional techniques. She authored four books as well as many articles on contemporary music published in monographs and the leading periodicals. As guest-lecturer, Alicja appeared at universities and schools of music in Chile, Germany, Romania, Spain, and Ukraine. Between 2009 and 2015, she served as General Secretary of the Polish Composers’ Union and is currently President of that organisation. Alicja Gronau-Osińska is a full professor at the Fryderyk Chopin University of Music and the head of the Doctoral Studies (since 2008) and the Doctoral School (since 2020) there.
Zbigniew Kozub (b. 1960 in Szczecin, Poland), Polish composer, pedagogue, and organist. He is the author of symphonic, chamber, solo, choral, and vocal-instrumental works, as well as music for film, theatre, and radio. For his compositions, he received a number of important prizes and honourable mentions at several Poland’s most important composers’ competitions. Zbigniew studied composition with Florian Dąbrowski at the Academy of Music in Poznań, graduating in 1985. He is currently full professor at his Alma Mater, where he teaches composition and chairs the Department of Film and Theatre Music. Since the early 1990s, he has led the Sound Design Studio within the Animation Department at the University of Arts in Poznań. His works have been performed regularly in Poland and abroad. Since 2007, he is Artistic Director of the Poznań Music Spring festival, one of the oldest and most prestigious New Music events in Poland.
Born in Poland and living in Canada since 1989, Piotr Grella-Możejko holds an M.Mus. degree in Composition from the University of Alberta, as well as a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from the same institution. Described by the German press as demonstrating "uncompromising honesty" (Neue Zeitschrift für Musik), he has been compared to Charles Ives, John Cage, Eric Satie and Hans-Joachim Hespos (Hannoversche Allgemeine Zeitung), his work has also been called "brawny, high-contrast... full of rich counterpoint and compelling textural changes" (The New York Times), "strikingly individual" (The Toronto Star), and "wonderful-sounding" (The Buffalo News, Buffalo, USA). Grella-Możejko has written on commissions from The Alberta Foundation for the Arts, The Canada Council for the Arts, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, the Canadian Polish Congress, Ensemble MW2, International Conversatorium of Organ Music, the Polish Ministry of Culture and Art, the Flanders Festival and Polish Radio, to name just a few. Presented in thirty-seven countries on five continents, Grella-Możejko's music has been commissioned, played and recorded by symphony and chamber orchestras in Canada and abroad, as well as by a host of outstanding ensembles and soloists around the world.
Rafał Stradomski (b. 1958 in Warsaw), Polish composer and writer, a graduate of the Fryderyk Chopin Academy of Music in native city. He holds degrees in Composition and Oboe Performance. In 1986, he received two awards: at the Young Composers’ Competition for his Wind Quintet and at the prestigious Grzegorz Fitelberg Competition for his A tre for large symphony orchestra. Between 1992 and 1993, having been awarded a grant by the French Government, he studied at the École Normale de Musique in Paris. In his compositions, Rafał Stradomski seeks new solutions in the domain of construction rather than new sound effects. In some works, he employs serialism or dodecaphonic technique, though not treating them rigorously. He draws on the experience of aleatoric (chance) strategies and uses elements of jazz, combining them with different compositional techniques, some of which he has invented, often for the use in a single work. Between 1984 and 2001 he organised concerts – also featuring contemporary works – on behalf of the Warsaw Music Society. As a performing artist he played standard and contemporary music on the oboe; currently he focusses on the piano. In 1992, he established the Felix Victor publishing house.