ICon Arts Ensemble

The Transylvanian contemporary music group ”ICon Arts”  is named after the ICon Arts Festival – the starting point of this ensemble, founded in 2009 at Sibiu, by the percussion player Andrei Marcovici.

The ICon Arts Ensemble is conducted by Gabriel Bebeșelea, a young and talented artist who shares with his colleague the enthusiasm for a fresh approach of both classical and new music. The group  counts 15 young musicians, some – former students of ICon Arts Academy and others – performers in Sibiu National Philharmonic Orchestra, and its primarily goal is to promote contemporary music and  attract new audiences.

Among ICon Arts Ensemble collaborators, one could name: Theo Wolters (conductor), Alexandru Tomescu (violin), Rodica Vica (soprano), Ioana Ilie (piano) and Bogdan Sărătean (actor).

In September 2011, ICon Arts Ensemble was invited to perform during the composition workshop organized within the ”George Enescu” International Festival and it was highly appreciated by the participant lecturers (and members of the ”George Enescu” Composition Contest): Bernard Cavanna (France), Dan Dediu (Romania), Costin Miereanu (France), Octavian Nemescu (Romania), Cornel Taranu (Romania), Hubert Stuppner (Italy), Zygmunt Krause (Poland). Following this experience, the group has recevied the invitation for the next ”George Enescu” Festival, in 2013.

The year 2011 ended for ”ICon Arts” members on Sibiu Philhrmonic stage, performing Mahler’s 4th Symphony (reduction by Erwin Stein), with the Romanian soprano Rodica Vica, and its established conductor, Gabriel Bebeșelea.

Starting from 2013, the ICon Arts Ensemble is part of a 3 year project called the European Contemporary Orchestra (ECO), collaborating with renowned ensembles like Musiques Nouvelles (Belgium) and Telemaque (France), on various stages in Sibiu, Marseilles (France), Mons (Belgium) and also in ”George Enescu” Festival.


SonoMania is a new music ensemble from Bucharest founded in 2012 by composer Diana Rotaru. The purpose of SonoMania is to attract a more numerous audience for modern and contemporary music, through the remarkable enthusiasm, talent and dedication of its members. SonoMania is mostly interested in concerts with an interdisciplinary component (multimedia, photography, dance, performance), as well as promoting the young generation of Romanian new music creators. SonoMania’s repertoire includes new music as well as established works from the XXth century. SonoMania was so far included in international festivals of contemporary music, such as The International New Music Week in Bucharest (2012- 2013, 2016), InnerSound International New Arts Festival (Bucharest, 2012-2016), Bucharest Music Film Festival – ArCuB (2012-2014), Cluj Musical Autumn (Cluj 2016), Musical Craiova Festival (Craiova, 2016), CIMRO DAYS (Bucharest, 2014), The 18th Festival of Contemporary Music – Happoman 2012 (South Korea), the MERIDIAN ISCM-Romanian Section International Festival (Bucharest, 2012-2016), the Bucharest Biennale of Contemporary Arts (2012), Catsheuvel Festival (The Hague, 2014), White Night of the Art Galleries (Bucharest, 30 September 2016).

The core members of SonoMania are: Stefan Diaconu (flute), Valentin Ghita (oboe), Mihai Pintenaru (clarinet), Raluca Stratulat (violin), Tamara Dica (viola), Eugen-Bogdan Popa (cello), Mihai Murariu / Olga Podobinschi (piano).

Official website, HERE.

Facebook page, HERE.


Ion Bogdan Ştefănescu

Born on 25th of April 1969, in Romania, renowned flutist Ion Bogdan Stefanescu studied at the National University of Music in Bucharest (1993) and at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, USA, with Alexander Murray (1994-1995).  He also took diferent courses with proffesors such as Alain Marion, Wolfgang Schulz , Pierre Yves Artaud, James Galway. Since 2002 he has been a doctor in music at the National University of Music in Bucharest. He debuted as a soloist at the young age of 14, at the Atheneum Hall in Bucharest, with  ”Il Cardellino”, by Antonio Vivaldi. Since then, Ion Bogdan Stefanescu has held many recitals and concerts as soloist in Romania and abroad, in England, France, Spain, Czechoslovakia, North Korea, Germany, U.S.A etc.

During his career, he was awarded numerous prestigious awards  at national and international competitions, such as: the ”Cultural Merit Medal”, Order of Chevalier, conffered by the President of Romania for Excellency in Culture , 2011 and for Excellency in Music, 2004; the  Romanian Music Magazine Prize for interpretation, 2009;  the Union of Composers and Musicologists Prize for Trio Contraste, 2009 and for  Solo Activity, 2007;  Liones Club Prize for Best Performance in James Galway Seminar, 2003;  the Prize of the “George Dima” Academy of Music, Cluj, Romania, 1987;  First Prize at the “Concertino Praga” competition, Czechoslovakia, 1986; the  Praise-worthy Diploma , G.B.Viotti, Vercelli – Italy, 1984 (Chamber music);  First Prize at the National Flute Competition, 1985.

He participated in numerous national national and international music festivals such as:  George Enescu International Festival, Bucharest;  Contemporary Music Festival, Bucharest and Darmstadt;  Festival of Classical and Contemporary Music, Phoenian, North Korea;  National Flute Assosiation, Kanssas, USA;  International Flute Assosiation, Munchen; Zeit für Neue Musik, Bayreuth, Germania; Wien Modern;  Steingreber Festival

He is member of three very important Romanian contemporary music groups: Trio Contraste, ProContemporania and Profil.  He participated in many Radio and TV recordings ( S.R.R., Deutschlandfunk-Köln, WDR, Société de Musique Contemporaine Lausanne, Bayeriche Rundfunk, DRS 2, Deuchlandfunk, TVR 1, TVR 2, TVR Cultural, Antena 1, B1TV, Alfa TV, TVRM).

Recorded CDs: “Foergetmenot”, Ed. gutingi, Germany, 2012; “Tabu – Violeta Dinescu / Trio Contraste”: Gutingi, Germany, 2010; “A Composer – An Interpreter”, 2009; “Apfelwürmer” (music by Dan Dediu): Cavalli Records, Germany, 2007; “Circuit” (solo flute): Gutingi, Germany, 2005; “Uroboros” (solo flute, music by Doina Rotaru): Ed. Muzicală, Bucharest, 2005; “Wandlungen” (Trio Contraste): Leondra, Germany, 2005; “Sonnengesang” (Trio Contraste): Gutingi, Germany, 2004; “Ansamblul Profil”, 2004; “Romanian Women Composers” (ProContemporania): Arfa – UCMR, Bucharest 2003; “George Enescu – Dixtuorul” (The “G.Enescu” Philharmonic Orchestra): Art Nova, Bucharest 1999; George Enescu – Chamber Symphony (The “G.Enescu” Philharmonic Orchestra): Art Nova, Bucharest 1999.

Recorded DVDs: with the “George Enescu” quintet – “Scarlatti & Beethoven”: AIX Records, SUA, 2002; “Mixtures I”, AIX Records, SUA, 2002; solo – “I.S.Bach”, AIX Records, SUA, 2002

During 1993, he was Solo Flute at the Radio Chamber Orchestra of Bucharest.  Between 1993-1998 and 2008-2010 he teached at the National University of Music in Bucharest. Since 1997 he has been Solo Flute of the “George Enescu” Philharmonic Orchestra, Bucharest, Romania. Since 2007 he has been a Soloist at the Timişoara Philharmonic Orchestra.  Since 2011 he is Professor at “Hyperion” University in Bucharest. Since 2011, he has been a member of Romanian Writers Union. In the past years, Ion Bogdan Stefanescu has also been active as a composer, as a opera libretist, as a poet and as a writer (“Blood Voices”:Tracus Arte, 2012; “The Passing Word”: Tracus Arte, 2011;  ”Chage Unchaged”: Opera Magna, 2010; “Of Stones and Birds”: Axa Publishing, 2006; Flute’s Ages: Libra, 2005; Games of Mirrors: Libra, 2004). His biography is included in “Men of Achievement” (International Biographical Centre, Cambrige, 1988);  ”5000 Personalities of the World” (Two, The American Biographical Institute, Inc., Raleigh, North Carolina, USA, 1989); “Who’s who in Romania” (Pegasus Press, Bucureşti, 2002).

 Official website, HERE.


Trio Contraste


Ion Bogdan Ştefănescu – flute(s)

Sorin Petrescu – piano

Doru Roman – percussions

 One of the best Romanian new music ensembles, Trio Contraste was founded in 1986. Since than, Trio Contraste has been performing all over Romania and abroad, over 40 concerts per year: Germany, Holland, Luxemburg, Switzerland, France, Denmark, Austria, China, Sweden, Poland. All three members of Contraste  also have highly respected solo careers, performing classical music as well but, when together, their main purpose is to promote Romanian contemporary music. Most of the trio repertoire was dedicated to Contraste by important Romanian composers like: Anatol Vieru, Aurel Stroe, Myriam Marbé, Stefan Niculescu, Nicolae Brandus, Octavian Nemescu, Corneliu Dan Georgescu, Eugen Wendel, Lucian Meţianu, Doina Rotaru, Violeta Dinescu, Maia Ciobanu, Sorin Lerescu, Dan Dediu, George Balint, Petru Stoianov, Irinel Anghel, Diana Rotaru etc

The Trio is permanently invited to take part in the “International New Music Week” festival in Bucharest, which takes place every year, in May. Also it performed in many international festivals like East – Vest Amsterdam (1991); Contemporary Music Festival – Huddersfield (1993); Nueva Musica – Bogota (1993); Musicarama – Hong- Kong (1995); Piano Plus Festival – Bamberg and Zeit fur Neue Musik – Bayreuth (2001); George Enescu Festival – Bucharest (2003, 2007), Culture Escape – Switzerland (2007), Stockholm New Music – Sweden (2008), Krakow New Music Festival – Poland (2008).

Trio Contraste was awarded the Romanian Composers and Musicologists Union Prize (UCMR) in 1986 and 2009 and, a few years later, in 1990, a Stipendienpreis in Darmstadt, Germany. One of its members – Ion Bogdan Ştefănescu – was also awarded the UCMR Prize, in 2007, for his solo activity.  In the same year, Trio Contraste became Solo Trio of “Banatul” Philharmonic in Timişoara.

The Trio is often invited to take part in many brodcasted cultural events. The ensemble has recorded for Romanian Radio Society, Deutschlandfunk-Köln, WDR, Société de Musique Contemporaine Lausanne, Bayeriche Rundfunk, Swiss 2.

Official website, HERE.

Andrei Marcovici

Percussionist Andrei Marcovici studied at the Primary School of music in Sibiu (piano lessons), took percussion lessons at the Iasi High School of Music and studied percussion and piano at the Music University in Wuppertal, Germany.

He has been a percussionist at the State Philharmonic Sibiu since 2006, while performing in over 100 concerts per year both orchestral, and chamber music, as well as solo and jazz concerts. Over the years he has played with famous musicians and conductors, like F. P. Zimmermann, G. Sinopoli, C. Tiellemann, G. Rozhdestvenski, and Larry Livingstone.

During his activity he has had many teachers and collaborated with great ensembles: Christian Roderburg, Eric Forrester, Andy Gilmann, Wolfgang Schneider; Bochumer Symphoniker, Wuppertal Simphoniker, Beethovenhalle Orchester, Duisburger Symphoniker etc.

Along with Sebastian Gheorghiu and Gabriel Bebeselea, he founded in 2009 the ICon Arts Ensemble, dedicated to performing contemporary classical music. Andrei Marcovici has been a member of the Romanian National Orchestra since 2011.

Mircea Ardeleanu

Born in Cluj/Romania, percussionist Mircea Ardeleanu studied music and percussion in Cluj and in Basel. After both solo-exams he became a freelance musician in the world of contemporary music. In 1978 he won first prize at the “Romanian Soloist’s Competition” in Bucharest and one year later, first prize at the International “Gaudeamus”
Competition in Rotterdam. He has performed at many important venues and festivals of contemporary music all around the world and has given world premiere performances in collaboration with contemporary composers. One outstanding aspect of his oncertistic activities is the promotion of young composers.

Mircea Ardeleanu gives master classes, international courses and plays worldwide concerts. Since 1996 he has been invited to teach percussion at the International Summer Courses in Darmstadt.  Mircea Ardeleanu has made recordings featuring works by composers such as K. Stockhausen, I. Xenakis, J. Cage, H. W. Henze and is preparing new releases featuring contemporary Swiss composers. The CD with G. Kurtàg’s compositions earned 2003 in Germany the prize for the best interpretation. He lives as freelance musician in Switzerland.

Official wesite, HERE.


Founded in Bucharest in December 1982, following Sorin Lerescu’s initiative, the Group of New Music TRAIECT has had since its start as guiding light the promoting of contemporary works, particularly Romanian ones. TRAIECT has become, in its more than 30 years lifetime of concerts, both home and abroad, an ensemble dedicated to the most recent composing experiences yet, as well, a true school for the formation of new music interpreters. Numerous works have been written as a result of TRAIECT’s commissioning them, others have been dedicated to the ensemble by composers from various countries.The premiere/first audition was a constant of TRAIECT’s concerts, a trademark just like the idea of drawing towards the values of contemporary music more and more people from the general public.TRAIECT has, following this course, promoted the concept of ‘contemporary music show’, joining to it various ways of visualizing music: dancing, computer and graphic imagery, light works, poetry, all in an all-comprising, unifying vision on the meanings and purposes of art in today’s world.

Official website, HERE.


Tiberiu Soare

One of the most talented and appreciated conductors in Romania today. Born in Bucharest, Tiberiu Soare graduated from the musical performance section of the Bucharest National University of Music in 2000, specialising in the tuba, and from the conducting section of the same university in 2001. Between 2001 and 2002 he took courses of higher study in conducting.

In 1993, 1994, and 1995, he won prizes at the National Musical Performance Competition and in 2003 the Music Criticism Prize of the Mihail Jora Union of Romanian Music Critics, Editors and Creators. In 2006 and 2010 he was nominated as a finalist in the Prometheus Awards for young musicians.

Between 2002 and 2004, he conducted the Giurgiu Philharmonic, and since 2003 he has conducted the Profil Contemporary Music Ensemble. Since 2005, he has also been a conductor at the Bucharest National Opera. Tiberiu Soare is often invited to conduct prestigious symphony orchestras and opera theatre ensembles in Romania, and has also toured in China, Switzerland, Germany, Israel, Poland and Hungary.

On 29 July, Tiberiu Soare conducted the National Radio Orchestra in a concert given as part of the Shanghai World Exhibition, and on 11 September 2010 he was invited to conduct the London Philharmonic Orchestra, the soloist being Angela Gheorghiu. Since November 2010, he has collaborated with the Kammerensemble N in Stockholm.

Mihai Măniceanu

Composer and pianist Mihai Maniceanu was born in 1976 in Bucharest. He studied piano (1995–2000), composition (2000–2005) and the master courses (2005-2006) of both specializations within UNMB. Afterwards he graduated the doctorate studies within the same university (2011). He received an Erasmus scholarship at the University of Music and Theatre Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy Leipzig, (2003-2004). UNMB scholarships at Muzikfest Festival, Hamburg (2001), Junger Künstler Festival–Filmmusik, Bayreuth (2002) and ISA 20. Internationale Sommerakademie, Murzzüschlag (2001). Nominated for Prometheus Opera Prima Prize (2009). Awards: First Prize at Icon Arts competition (2003), Romanian Academy Prize (for Sus) (2011) and UCMR Prize for Symphonic Work (for Sempre risoluto) (2011). His compositions have been played by George Enescu Philharmonic Orchestra, National Radio Orchestra, F.M. Bartholdy University Orchestra, Profil, Propuls,, devotioModerna, Swinepearl and Traiect ensembles, Accoustic and I.C. Danielescu choirs.

MUSIC on internet: Sempre Risoluto (piano concerto), Waltz Invitation, Viii

The State Philharmonic Orchestra of Sibiu

In the 16th century, Sibiu had one of the first European schools for organ, funded by Hyeronymus Ostermayer and the city’s archive contains music scores signed by composers of the 17th and 18th centuries. In 1774, at the court of Samuel von Brukenthal, governor of Transylvania, a professional orchestra held its first concert. In 1792, one year after Mozart’s death, “The Kidnap from Serai” was played in Sibiu, and later in 1800, the “The Creation” Oratorio by Joseph Haydn.

The State Philharmonic of Sibiu was funded on January 1, 1949. Together with the orchestra, artists from Romania and other countries have performed, among them: Ion Voicu,Valentin Gheorghiu, Stefan Ruha, Monique de La Bruchollerie and Jean Jaques Thiollier, Sviatoslav Richter, Rudolf Kerer, Lazar Berman, Dimitri Bashkirov, Ivry Gitlis, andMontserrat Caballé.

In 2004, the new location of the State Philharmonic of Sibiu was moved to Thalia Hall. Built in 1787 by Martin Hochmeister, the hall was destroyed twice through the years, both times due to a fire. The County Council of Sibiu restarted the restoration of the building in 1990. The official inauguration took place on October 7, 2004, accompanied by the notes of Symphony no. 9 by Ludwig van Beethoven.

Official website, here.