We are a chamber ensemble specialising in music of the 20th and 21st centuries. Over the years, our desire to present less well-known and entirely new works whose mastery often represents both a mental and technical challenge gradually became a passion and life mission, motivating us to always pursue a more daring and momentous dramaturgy stepping beyond the boundaries of music.
We studied at art universities across Europe (the Academy of Performing Arts in Bratislava, Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien, Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Graz, Mozarteum University Salzburg, Det Kongelige Danske Musikkonservatoriuma, the Janáček Academy of Music and Performing Arts in Brno, Universität der Künste Berlin, and others), which has allowed us to inform our performance with diverse approaches to the musical material. Our members are active as professionals in various orchestras both in Slovakia and abroad, as well as in various educational institutions.
Since the group’s establishment in 2012 and first concert on February 21st 2013, we have performed over a hundred works of both Slovak and international contemporary music, presenting over fifty of these as world premieres. Slovak premieres are also frequent. EnsembleSpectrum regularly initiates the creation of new works, particularly through New Dawn, a project aimed at the young generation. We are delighted to have performed at important festivals dedicated to Slovak music (Melos-Ethos, New Slovak Music) that occupy an important position in our cultural history, thanks to which we can contribute to the improvement of social and cultural values in Slovakia. However, we also appreciate the opportunity to present Slovak music at younger festivals (Galéria hudby, Konfrontácie, Hudba u Fullu), events abroad (Fête de la Musique, Germany; MusicOlomouc, Czech Republic), and at our own dedicated concerts (New Dawn On the Road, Rezonancia farieb, Avantgarda ’60, etc., or the unique nine-hour Sleepover marathon at Nová Cvernovka).
The principal aims of our programming can be divided into three creative directions: work by young composers; Slovak music after 1945; international music after 1945. This conception guiding our repertoire allows us to focus attention on a particular issue or theme and present it to our audiences. Our list of performed works therefore includes composers associated with French spectralism (G. Grisey, T. Murail, F. Romitelli), the Slovak musical avant-garde (J. Sixta, I. Hrušovský, I. Parík, V. Bokes, M. Adamčiak, and others), American experimentalism (J. Tenney, J. Cage, J. Eastman, A. Lucier, P. Niblock), European post-modernism (C. Bauckholt, A. Schnittke, S. Sciarrino, M. Kagel, H. Abrahamsen), and the work of young Slovak (P. Javorka, A. Paluchová, L. Novosedlíková, M. Tóth, T. Hvozdíková, S. Hvozdík, etc.) and international (S. Bušs, H. Arias, A. Arkushyna, S. Kim, P. Siek) composers.
In 2018, we released our debut album, New Dawn, with the Real Music House label. Our 2021 release on the Music Fund label, Avant-garde of the ’60s, is dedicated to the crucial chamber works of 1960s Slovak music. That same year, we established a new branch of our activities, UBU Collection (utopická brána umenia – Utopian Gate of Art), which allows us to contribute to the dissemination of contemporary art through music publishing. The first album on this label was by František Výrostko and BraCk Players: Doublebassement (2021, UBU #01), which was followed by an addition to the New Dawn series: New Dawn Vol. 2 – La femme armée (2021, UBU #02), nominated for the Radio_Head Award in the classical music category. Since then, the label has released the debut profile album of Slovak composer Matej Sloboda – Doctor ONE & Mistress PULSE (2022, UBU #03) – and a piano trio album by the Proxima Piano Trio, Current Vibes (2022, UBU #04).