About

The Zurich Chamber Singers

The ensemble The Zurich Chamber Singers is looking forward to various engagements at choral festivals and to cooperating with Swiss orchestras in the coming seasons. They are devoted to several innovative and exciting programmes every year, performing sacred and secular choral works, as well as newly commissioned pieces by promising young composers from all over the world. The ensemble has been delighted to cooperate with the US- American composer Kevin Hartnett and the Northern Irish Patrick Brennan in the past, creating musical interactions not only of traditional repertoire with contemporary music, but also of Swiss musicians and audiences with those of from abroad.

The Zurich Chamber Singers were founded in 2015 by the conductor and pianist Christian Erny and the musicologist Emanuel Signer. It is made up of eighteen young singers from the Zurich area in Switzerland, who are dedicated to choral music in a professional capacity. With great individual contributions from each of the choral members, the Zurich Chamber Singers are committed to cherishing works of the established choral repertoire as well as fostering the activity of young contemporary composers.

Singers

The Zurich Chamber Singers are an ensemble of young singers from the region of Zurich, Switzerland. The size of the ensemble can vary in different projects. This is the full list of members.

Meret Roth

Soprano

Domino Schlegel

Soprano

Simona Rigling

Soprano

Sara-Bigna Janett

Soprano

Martina Küng

Soprano

Samina Molfetta

Alto

Martina Zimmerli

Alto

Annika Langenbach

Alto

Andrea Erny

Alto

Florian Glaus

Tenor

Severin Hosang

Tenor

Aedan Christie

Tenor

Philipp Classen

Tenor

Hannes Eggenberger

Bass

Emanuel Signer

Bass

Mario Strebel

Bass

David Gurtner

Bass

Israel Martins dos Reis

Bass

Matias Lanz

Continuo

Christian Erny

Conductor

The Zurich Chamber Singers were founded in 2015 by Christian Erny, pianist and Emanuel Signer, musicologist in Winterthur, Switzerland.

Artistic director

Christian Erny, born 1988 in Winterthur, is co-founder and conductor of the ensemble The Zurich Chamber Singers. He is also choral assistant at the Konservatorium Winterthur, and has been active as a concert pianist and music pedagogue, as well for several years as the artistic director of the concert series Konzerte Freulerpalast in Glarus.

At the age of six years, he commenced his musical training at the Konservatorium Winterthur, where he was first taught on the piano. He continued at the Zurich University of the Arts in the piano class of Hans- Jürg Strub, as well as in the concert class of Jean- Louis Haguenauer at the renowned Jacobs School of Music in Bloomington (USA). As a pianist, Christian received further tuition from Leif Ove Andsnes and Eldar Nebolsin at the Bergen Piano Academy. An especially prominent influence on his conducting has been Markus Utz, professor for choral conducting at the Zurich University of the Arts.

In his teenage years Christian was active as a choral member in the choirs of the Konservatorium Winterthur under the direction of Christoph Bachmann, who kindled his love for choral music. In this time, he made first experiences as a choral conductor. His first CD as a choral conductor is the album Passio, which he recorded with his ensemble The Zurich Chamber Singers for the label ARS Produktion.

Ever since his student days Christian has been active as a concert pianist. He has performed as a soloist and accompanist in Switzerland, France, Germany, Norway, and the USA, and has been broadcast on various occasions on Swiss radio. Upon graduating with his Masters degree, he was awarded a scholarship by the Hirschmann Foundation in 2013 and was prize winner at the international piano competition Île de France in 2015. His first CD with piano works by Liszt and Debussy was released by the label Solo Musica and has been received enthusiastically by audiences and the press. Christian is currently working on his second CD with works by the Russian composer Arthur Lourié with the label ARS Produktion.

Christian’s pedagogic activity, too, dates back to his student years. From 2011 to 2014, he had a teaching assignment in piano at the Konservatorium Winterthur, and since 2016 he has had a piano class at the Pädagogische Maturitätsschule Kreuzlingen.

Project management

Emanuel Signer, from Winterthur, Switzerland, is a PhD student in Historical Musicology at Queens’ College, University of Cambridge.

His research project, supervised by Prof. Iain Fenlon, examines printed musical settings of the mass ordinary produced in Italy between 1563 and 1644. The project seeks to explore how sacred music became a main focus of the Italian printing industry in the aftermath of the Council of Trent, and in which way this blossoming period of sacred music distribution relates to stylistic innovations, changes and developments taking place in the late 16th and the early 17th century. By focusing on the polyphonic mass ordinary – still frequently referred to as a ‘conservative’ or ‘uninteresting’ genre from the point of view of stylistic ‘progress’ – it shall be examined in which way such music for the most sacred of Catholic liturgical rituals was perceived as prestigious and sellable, as adaptable to various forms of compositional change, and therefore at the centre of compositional, distributional, and stylistic history at the turn of the 17th century.

For this project Emanuel was awarded with scholarships by the Cambridge Commonwealth, European and International Trust CCEIT and the Janggen-Pöhn-Foundation, St. Gallen, Switzerland, as well as with the scholarship Doc.Mobility by the Swiss National Science Foundation SNF.

Management

Severin Hosang is currently completing the Master’s degree at the University of St. Gallen Business School. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in political science and modern history from the University of Zurich.

As a recorder player, Severin was first prize winner of numerous music competitions. He has performed as a soloist or in duo and ensemble formations throughout Switzerland. Master classes with Maurice Steger, Hans-Martin Linde, Frans Brüggen, Michala Petri, Dorothee Oberlinger. He received his vocal training in the choirs of the Winterthur Conservatory under Christoph Bachmann. He is also a singer and board member of the professional vocal ensemble The Zurich Chamber Singers.

Severin Hosang works as a Junior Public Affairs Specialist at AXA Switzerland and is a member of the Commission for Public Relations (KOA) of the Swiss Radio and Television responsible body (SRG) Zurich-Schaffhausen.

David Gurtner, born 1987 in Winterthur, Switzerland, studied percussion and timpani at Zurich University of the Arts with Klaus Schwärzler, Rainer Seegers and Raphael Christen and voice with David Thorner. He received his Master of Arts degree in Music Performance in 2015.

He was a member of Gustav Mahler Jugendorchester. As a freelance percussionist he regularly performs with Basel Symphony Orchestra, Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich, Musikkollegium Winterthur and various other ensembles. He is a member and co-manager of the vocal ensemble The Zurich Chamber Singers, a member of the percussion ensemble DeciBells, drummer in his band The Roffs, furthermore he works for Giannini Swiss Drums and is a member of the executive board at Kulturzentrum Gaswerk in Winterthur.