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Agata Zubel (f)
Composer in Residence

Herkunftsland: Polen
KKA-Residency: 2015

Agata Zubel
Agata Zubel
©Tomasz Kulak
Born in Wroclaw.

She graduated with a distinction (the medal Music Primus Inter Pares) from the Karol Lipinski Academy of Music in Wrocław after composition studies with Jan Wichrowski and voice studies with Danuta Zipser. In 2004 she obtained a doctorate and in 2014 a post-doctorate in musical arts. She also studied in the Netherlands and took numerous courses. She is currently a lecturer on the faculty of the Academy of Music in Wroclaw. She has received scholarships from the Ministry of Culture, the Rockefeller Foundation, Ernst von Siemens Musikstiftung, the Executive Board of the City of Wroclaw, and the International Foundation for Education. The Ministry of Culture honor her with medal “Deserved for Polish Culture”. She is also a member of the Polish Composers’ Union.

She has won several competitions (also international) – in the fields of both voice and composition. At the beginning of 2005, she received the prestigious “Passport” Award of the “Polityka” weekly for classical music. In the same year her 2nd Symphony – commissioned by Deutsche Welle - was premiered during the Beethoven Festival in Bonn. Subsequent commissions have included String Quartet No.1 (Ultraschall Festival in Berlin 2007), of Songs (Wratislavia Cantans Festival2007), Cascando (Central European Music Festival in Seattle 2007), 3rd Symphony (with the assistance of the Rockefeller Foundation 2008), Aphorisms on Milosz (Sacrum Profanum Festival in Krakow 2011), Shades of Ice (London Sinfonietta 2011), Street of a Human City (Deutschlandfunk for the Warsaw Autumn Festival 2011), Labyrinth (Polish Institute in Tel Aviv 2012), What is the Word (Klangforum Wien 2012), Percussion Store (Krakow Philharmonic 2012). In 2010 her opera-ballet Between was premiered in the Grand Theatre -National Opera in Warsaw and in 2011 she was commissioned to write another opera for this theatre - Oresteia. In 2011 she was invited as a “composer-in-residence” to the of Other Minds Festival in San Francisco. During last two seasons (2010-2012) she was also “composer-in-residence” in Krakow Philharmonic. One of the highlights of the 2012 Sacrum Profanum Festival was a concert of the Klangforum Wien ensemble, dedicated entirely to her composition. In 2013 her piece “Not I” recorded with Klangforum Wien representing Polish Radio was given the highest grade during 60th UNESCO International Rostrum of Composers and in 2014 the same piece received “Polonica Nova” Prize.

As a vocalist she has participated in many prestigious musical events. Modern music takes pride of place a special place in her repertoire. Together with the composer and pianist Cezary Duchnowski she established the ElettroVoce Duo in 2001. She has premiered and recorded numerous works by contemporary composers. In the past few years she has performed Chantefleurs et Chantefables by Witold Lutoslawski (Musica Polonica Nova), DW9 by Bernhard Lang (The Warsaw Autumn), Luci mie traditrici by Salvatore Sciarrino (Nostalgia Festival), The Star by Zygmunt Krauze (electroacoustic adaptation by C.Duchnowski at the Polish Theater in Wroclaw), the title role in Phaedra, an opera by Dobromila Jaskot and Madeline in The Fall of the House of Usher by Ph.Glass (The Grand Theatre - Polish National Opera). She received the annual “Orpheus” Award of Polish music critics for the title role in C.Duchnowski’s opera Martha’s Garden. She also participated in an experimental improvisation project during the International Courses of Composition in Darmstadt. She has given many concerts abroad: in Italy, Belgium, Switzerland, France, the Netherlands, Austria, Portugal, Germany, United Kingdom, Ireland, Russia, Ukraine, Lithuania, Latvia, Greece, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Korea, Canada and the United States. She worked together with famous modern music ensembles - Klangforum Wien, musikFabrik, London Sinfonietta, Eighth Blackbird Ensemble, Seattle Chamber Players. Her discography consists of more than a dozen albums. Her monographic CDs encompass inter alia Not I published by KAIROS and “Fryderyk” Award-winning Cascando released by CD Accord. The most impressive examples of her vocal performance can be found at the album Poems containing songs by Copland, Berg and Szymański, as well as “Fryderyk” Award-nominated El-Derwid. Blots on the Sun.

2014 – Polish Composers’ Union Award
2014 - “Polonica Nova” Prize for the composition Not I;
2014 - honorable medal “Deserved for Polish Culture”;
2013 - winner of the UNESCO International Rostrum of Composers for the composition Not I;
2010 - “Fryderyk” in category of Contemporary Music for album Cascando;
2009 – “Orpheus” Award
2008 - Wroclaw Music Award for the duo ElettroVoce;
2005 - Wroclaw Music Award;
2005 – Passport of Polityka award for classical music for the year 2004;
2005 - Special Award for the duo ElettroVoce at the Gaudeamus Interpreters Competition
in Amsterdam;
2003 – 2nd Prize at the International Jurgenson Competition for Young Composers
in Moscow;
2003 – 3rd Prize at the International Competition of Interpretation of Contemporary Music
for Professional Soloists Nicati, Switzerland;
2003 – 1st Prize of Leopold Kronenberg’s Bank Foundation at the XX and XXI Century
Music Competition for Young Performers;
2002 – 1st Prize at the Krzysztof Penderecki International Competition of Contemporary Chamber Music;
2002 - Special Award at the 7.Concours Moderne, Chain;
2000 – 1st Prize and a Special Award of Polish Radio at the Adam Didur National Composition Competition;
2000 - 3rd prize at the Composition Competition for Classical Guitar;
1999 – 1st Prize and a Special Award of PWM Edition at the Andrzej Panufnik Composition Competition;

Madrigals for five voices (2015) – 10’
Violin Concerto for violin and chamber orchestra (2014) – CA 13’
Where to for ensemble (2014) – 20’
IN for large symphony orchestra (2013) - PWM 2013 – 12’30
In Between the Ebb of Thoughts and the Flow of Sleep for voice, piano and string orchestra
to poetry by Tadeusz Dąbrowski (2013) - PWM 2013 – 15’
Percussion Store for percussion ensemble and orchestra (2012) - PWM 2012 – CA 15’
What is the word for voice and chamber ensemble to words by Samuel Beckett (2012)
- PWM 2012 – CA 10’
Labyrinth voice and chamber ensemble to words by Wisława Szymborska
(2011) – PWM 2012 - CA 10’
Shades of Ice for clarinet, cello & electronics (2011) – PWM 2012 - 9’
The Streets of a Human City for instrumental ensemble (2011) - PWM 2012 - 16’
Aphorisms on Miłosz for soprano and chamber ensemble to words by Czesław Miłosz
(2011) – PWM 2011 - CA 20’
Suite for percussion trio (2011) - CA 14’
Oresteja dramopera for soloists, actors, choir and percussion to libretto by Maja Kleczewska
(2011) - CA 120’
Not I for voice, chamber ensemble and electronics to words by Samuel Beckett (2010)
- PWM 2012 - CA 21'
Symphony No.3 for trumpet and symphony orchestra (2009) ) - PWM Edition 2010 – CA 25’
Between opera/ballet for voice, electronics & dancers (2008) – 51’
of Songs for voice, cello, choir and orchestra (2007) - PWM Edition 2007 – CA 40’
Cascando for voice, flute, clarinet, violin and cello to words by Samuel Beckett (2007) – CA 15’
Obciążenie dopuszczalne for percussion and computer (2006) – 14’
String Quartet No.1 for four cellos and computer (2006) – CA 12’
Symphony No.2 for 77 performers (2005) – CA 14’
Stories for voice and prepared piano to words by Natasha Goerke (2004) – 16’
Concerto grosso for recorder, baroque violin, harpsichord and choir (2004) – CA 18’
Unisono II for voice, accordion and computer (2003) – 9’
Unisono I for voice, percussion and computer (2003) – 6’
Nelumbo for four marimbas (2003) – 8’
Symphony No.1 for orchestra (2002) – 15’
Lentille for string orchestra, voice and accordion (2001) - PWM Edition 2001 – 13’
Re-Cycle for five percussion sets (2001) – 16’
Trivellazione a percussione for percussion (2000) - PWM Edition 2001 – CA 8’
Parlando for voice and computer (2000) – CA 8’
Photographs from an Album for marimba and string quartet (2000) - PWM Edition 2001 – CA 17’
Ludia and Fu for solo guitar (1999) - EDITION MODRAN 2000 – CA 6’
Ballad for voice, percussion and tape (1999) – 9’
Ragnatela for bassoon and string orchestra (1999) - PWM Edition 2002 – 12’
Meditations for mixed choir a cappella to words by Jan Twardowski (1999) – 5’
A Song about the End of the World for voice, reciter and instrumental ensemble
to words by Czesław Miłosz (1998) – 10’
Three Miniatures for piano (1998) – 5’
Birthday for mixed choir a cappella to words by Wisława Szymborska (1998) - PWM Edition
2003 – 4 ‘
Nocturne for solo violin (1997) -PWM Edition 2000 (An Anthology of Contemporary Music) – 8’
Lumière pour percussion solo (1997) - PWM Edition 1999 – 10’

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