Biographies UNIVERSE, INCOMPLETE
Christoph Marthaler, Director
Titus Engel, Musical direction
Anna Viebrock, Stage design and costume design
Andreas (Phoenix) Hofer, Light
was born in Erlenbach near Zürich in 1951 and spent the Seventies and Eighties employed as a musician for various German-speaking theatres culminating in a sustained period of work at Theater Basel from 1988 to 1993. His innovative theatrical vocabulary became established in Germany with the 1993 production Murx den Europäer! Murx ihn! Murx ihn! Murx ihn! Murx ihn ab! (Volksbühne am Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz, Berlin). From 2000 to 2004 Marthaler was Artistic Director of Schauspielhaus Zürich, which was voted “Theatre of the Year” twice during this period. More than 15 of his productions have been invited to the Berlin Theatertreffen. He has also been awarded numerous prizes including most recently the Golden Lion at the Venice Biennale and the City of Zürich Art Prize and his productions have been presented at leading festivals around the globe. Marthaler has also directed at several opera houses including in Paris, Zürich, Madrid and the Salzburg Festival.
An openness to innovative projects and concert forms combined with unparalleled technical precision distinguishes Titus Engel as one of the leading creative minds among the conductors of his generation. Alongside his interest in the very newest music and symphonic works of the 19th and 20th centuries he also has a deep passion for baroque music. Born in Zürich in 1975, he studied Musicology and Philosophy in Zürich and Berlin and trained as a conductor in Dresden. After Gerard Mortier invited him to the Teatro Real in 2011 an international career ensued that has taken him to the Vlaamse Opera (Czernowin’s ‘Infinite Now’ - Premiere of the Year 2017), Staatsoper Stuttgart, Staatsoper Hamburg, Staatsoper Berlin, Frankfurt Opera and Theater Basel (Stockhausen’s ‘Donnerstag aus Licht’ – Production of the Year 2016 – and ‘La Traviata’ 2017). In the concert field he enjoys close artistic relationships with the SWR and WDR symphony orchestras and with Klangforum Wien.
was born in Cologne in 1951 and studied stage design with Karl Kneidl at the Kunstakademie in Düsseldorf. Her collaboration with Christoph Marthaler took her to numerous international theatres and opera houses and she was a member of the leading team at Schauspielhaus Zürich until the summer of 2004. She has also developed opera productions with the directing team of Jossi Wieler/Sergio Morabito since 1994. Anna Viebrock’s own career as a director began in 2002 and she has created productions for Staatsoper Hannover, the Opéra de Paris, Staatsoper Stuttgart, Schauspielhaus Zürich, Theater Basel and Schauspiel Köln. She has been given a total of 16 “Stage Designer of the Year” and “Costume Designer of the Year” awards. Exhibitions of her stage design models have been presented in Rotterdam, Prague, Frankfurt am Main, Madrid, Brussels, Ghent, Avignon, Helsinki, Basel and Giessen. The State of Hesse awarded her the Hessian Prize for Culture in 1997, she was presented with the Berlin Theatre Prize in 2004 and the Hein-Heckroth Prize in 2013. Anna Viebrock is a professor at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna.
born 1971 in Vienna, studied chemical engineering in Linz. Initial lighting activities in Posthof Linz then led him to the Vienna Festival and Salzburg Festival, where he accompanied numerous productions since 1997. From 2002 on he created the light for various dance productions from the independent scene. Since 2005, he designed the light for many productions by Christoph Marthaler. At the Bregenzer Festspiele 2015 he was responsible for the lighting design in the production "Hoffmanns Erzählungen" directed by Stefan Herheim. This collaboration has resulted in a lot of new creations in Hamburg, Oslo, Lyon, Paris and Berlin.Other works were done in Vienna, Avignon, Berlin and Köln. Since autumn 2013 he has been teaching lighting design at the scenography class of Academy of Fine Arts Vienna.
Founded in 1919, over the course of its history the Bochumer Symphoniker has evolved into one of the leading concert ensembles in Western Germany. Since Steven Sloane became General Music Director of the Bochumer Symphoniker in 1994, it has twice won the coveted award for “Best Concert Programme”. The orchestra has also made a name for itself internationally. It has toured to Israel, Austria, Estonia and the USA as well as making regular appearances at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam and the Ruhrtriennale. The Bochumer Symphoniker has repeatedly been involved in unusual, cross art form projects: performing on several occasions with Herbert Grönemeyer, accompanying over 65,000 singers as the “auf Schalke” stadium orchestra in Gelsenkirchen, playing with Jethro Tull frontman Ian Anderson and the legendary a capella group Take Six, accompanying Sting in seven cities in Germany and Switzerland and performing on the Harald Schmidt Show. It has also made a name for itself with a series of multi award-winning CD recordings.
combines the benefits of an ensemble culture with the desire to mix different musical styles at the highest level. The Rhetoric Project is a network of musicians brought together by the conductor Titus Engel that performs in varying chamber music and orchestral formations. Its repertoire stretches from ancient music to contemporary music and improvisation. At its core it combines historical expertise with contemporary openness and performative energy. In this way it aims to produce early 21st century music with a rhetorical quality that “stirs the emotions” (Geminiani).
The Rhetoric Project is not a fixed line-up with established positions but is assembled according to the demands of each project from a pool of musicians made up of international soloists, members of special ensembles and musicians from leading orchestras.
Since Schlagquartett Köln made its debut in 1989 it has represented the innovative development of percussion instruments in the 20th century. In addition to nurturing the repertoire of percussion music that has grown markedly in recent years, the Schlagquartett also concentrates on premiering new works. Its four musicians extend the horizon of the world of percussion instruments both within the laboratory conditions of the quartet form and in co-operation with other ensembles. Schlagquartett Köln has achieved considerable success and a worldwide reputation with concert tours, radio recordings, CDs and music theatre productions. It also performs regularly at leading new music festivals including guest appearances at the Berliner Festwochen, the Wittener Tage für Neue Kammermusik, musica viva in Munich, the Ilkhom Festival in Uzbekistan, the Eclat Festival in Stuttgart, Warsaw Autumn, the Transit Festival in Leuven, the Ultraschall Festival in Berlin and the Eight Bridges Festival in Cologne. The quartet has also received numerous prizes and awards for its work and recordings.