Aurelian-Octav Popa

One of the great Romanian musicians, Aurelian-Octav Popa (b. 1937) studied clarinet and composition in Bucharest (1958-62), then continued his studies at the Conservatoire National de Paris and very early became a virtuoso of his instrument. He won prizes at international competitions such as First Prize in 1959 at the Prague Musical Spring, other awards in Budapest (1965), Birmingham (1966),  Utrecht (1967) or Geneva (1967). As soloist, he played with many proeminent orchestras and he has toured in almost all Europe and U.S. with the George Enescu Philharmonic Orchestra.

Aurelian-Octav Popa is celebrated as one of the most proeminent Romanian clarinetists. His 1991 CD, recorded by London Olympia House, was awarded 10 stars and “coup de foudre” (the highest rating possible) by Répertoire des disques compacts, Paris. Same happened with Libre comme un oiseau, a CD that got 4 stars from Le monde de la Musique in 2006. He is a permanent member in different international competitions (Rome, Paris, Jeunesses Musicales Bucharest, etc.) and a clarinet competition in Constanta (Romania, 1993-94) bears his name. He conducts different masterclasses in Greece, Bulgaria, Portugal, Romania.  He recorded 5 CDs in London Olympia House, Sofia MegaMusic, Intersound Munchen, Thalassa Records Constanta.

Aurelian-Octav Popa’s conducting career started in 1977, when he founded and started conducting  the Quodlibet Musicum Chamber Orchestra. He later attended masterclasses with Sergiu Celibidache and conducted all major symphonic orchestras in Romania, such as the George Enescu Philharmonic Orchestra in Bucharest. Between 1989-2004 he was the main conductor of the Constanta Philharmonic Orchestra. He made numerous recordings for the Romanian Radio and Television Broadcasting Company. He participated in the esteemed George Enescu Festival with English Chambers Orcestra and the Copland Concerto.

He is also an arranger for stage and film soundtracks.

Aurelian-Octav Popa was awarded the Prize of the Romanian Composers and Musicologists first in 1991, then in 2009, for his whole activity. In 2012, his 75th anniversary and 50 years of music activity (as a clarinetist and as a conductor) was celebrated by the George Enescu Philharmonic.

Duo with Sanda Crăciun-Popa (viola)

Concerts in Bucharest and all main cities in Romania, as well as international tours.

Festivals: Musik Sommer Baden Baden – 1994/1996, Bach Festival Heidelberg – 1995/1996, Documenta X Kassel – 1999, Musik Sommer Festival MDR Lepzig – 1996, Festival des Fôrets – 1996, Musica Rara Festival Erfurt – 1996, Series of big clarinetists Lincoln Center New York – 1999,  New Jersey – 1999, Houston University – 1999, Festival do Acores – 1999, the first edition of Visual Arts Fair, Bucharest 1999, several editions of the International Week of New Music, Bucharest.

Events: special guests of the UNITER Gala (Bucharest)  in 1999; special guests of the Chamber Music Festival in Sighişoara (Romania), 2001; America Alive Gala, 2001; Artists for artists Gala, 2003;  Christmas for All Gala, the Romanian Atheneum, Bucharest, 2003; the Lucian Blaga Poetry Festival, Sebeş Alba, 2001; The Titu Maiorescu Literary Meetings,  Tescani – 2001/2002/2003; the Arfa concert series – Music, an Adventure,  Goethe Institut, Bucharest 2003.

Museum (guests): the George Enescu Museum; the National Art Museum in Romania, Bucharest; the Art Museum, Constanta; The Brancovan Palace of Mogosoaia; museums in Germany (Manheim, Baden-Baden, Frankfurt);  Casa Mateus, Portugal;  Chateau Imperial and the Franco-American Museum,  Compiègne, France.

Exhibitions of great Romanian artists (guests): Marin Gherasim, Corneliu Vasilescu, Ion and Ariana Nicodim (the „Dalla terra all’opera, la forza delle radici” exhibition, Vicenza, Padova, Mogoşoaia), Angela Tomaselli, Alin Gheorghiu, Ana Maria Smighelski, Cela Nemţu, Lucia Puşcaşu, Nicolae Flondor, Wanda Sachelarie, Bogdana Contras, Carmen Marin.

Resident artists at: the Brahms House, Baden Baden, 1996; the „George Enescu” Memorial House, Tescani (Romania), 2002; the Panaci Creative Camp, Romania 2009.

Cultural Institutes (guests): Bucharest, Paris, New York, Tel Aviv, Berlin.




Veronica Anuşca

Born in Piatra Neamț (Romania) on the 21st of April 1985, Veronica Anușca started studying music at the “Victor Brauner” Art High School when she was 12. After one year of guitar practice, she transferred to the cello section where she spent the next three years. It was after finishing the 8th grade that she decided to follow what she now knew was her true calling: singing. Oddly enough, the one who helped her realize and decide her true passion was not one of her instrument teachers nor the singing teacher. It was her Musical Theory teacher, Mr. Ionel Ceobanu that pointed her in the right direction.
In 2004 she was accepted at the National University of Music Bucharest which she graduated in 2009. She went on to successfully follow the N.U.M.B. Master program which she finished in June 2011. All her university studies have taken place under the guidance of her singing teacher, Ph.D. Ionel Voineag and his assistant, Ph.D. Andreiana Roșca Geamănă.
Since deciding to study singing, Veronica Anuşca has attended numerous Masterclass both in Romania and abroad, working with world renowned musicians such as Mariana Nicolesco, Christian Badea, Marina Krilovici, Adrian Butterfield, Elena Botez, Georg Beckmann, Ionel Pantea, Claudio Desderi, etc.
Starting with 2003 Veronica Anuşca has also been a laureate of many national and international music competitions: „Emanuel Elenescu” National Competition, Piatra Neamt (First Prize – 2003), Gala of Young Talents, Arcus (Special Award – 2006), “Mihail Jora” National Singing Competition, Bucharest (“Uniunea Armenilor” Special Award – 2006), “Mihail Jora” National Singing Competition, Bucharest (“Ludovic Spiess” Special Award – 2008), Orange Awards for young musicians finals, Bucharest (Special Award for the most interesting repertoire – 2009), “Hariclea Darcleé” International Competition, Braila (2nd Prize – 2010), “Ion Dacian Trophy” National Competition, Bucharest (Special Prize awarded by the “Ion Dacian” National Operetta Theatre – 2010), “Paul Constantinescu” National Competition, Ploiesti (Grand Prize – 2010), “Mihail Jora” National Singing Competition, Bucharest (First Prize and Special Award – 2011), “Maeştrii Artei Lirice – George Ştefănescu Goangă” International Singing Competition, Bucharest (First Prize and Special Award, including two leading roles in the Bucharest National Opera House’s next season program – 2011), “Sabin Dragoi” International Competition, Timisoara (Grand Prize – 2011), “Romanian Lied Festival” Brasov (First Prize – 2011).
Veronica Anuşca has performed on many of the country’s most prestigious stages such as the Romanian Athenaeum (Bucharest), the National Radio Hall (Bucharest), the National Opera House (Bucharest), the Cantacusino Palace (Bucharest), the National Bank of Romania’s Marble Hall (Bucharest), the Hungarian Opera House (Cluj-Napoca), the “Ion Dumitrescu” Philharmonic (Râmnicu-Vâlcea), the “Ionel Perlea” UNESCO Cultural Centre Concert Hall (Slobozia) and at the Gdansk Conservatory Concert Hall (Gdansk – Poland).
Her repertoire includes varied genres of vocal music, from lied to aria, to oratorio and opera. As a lied singer she has successfully performed in various recitals including baroque, classical, romantic, modern and contemporary music. Her flexibility and open-mindedness allows her to be at the same time the soloist for the St. Josef Catholic Cathedral (Bucharest) and one of the most sought-after contemporary music singer thus switching between styles without pause or fault. She has also performed in aria concerts and oratorios accompanied by some of the most renowned orchestras in Romania: Messe Nelson (J. Haydn) at the “George Enescu” Concert Hall, Bucharest, with the National University of Music Orchestra, conductor Leonard Boga; La Ressurezione (G.F.Haendel), Angelo, at the “George Enescu” Concert Hall, Bucharest, with the Baroque Orchestra of the National University of Music, conductor Adrian Butterfield; Opera Concert with the “Ion Dumitrescu” Philharmonic Orchestra, Râmnicu-Vâlcea, conductor Alexandru Geamana; Opera Concert in the Bucharest Radio Hall with the National Radio Orchestra, conductor Adrian Prabava; Opera Concert with the Gdansk Conservatory Orchestra in Gdansk (Poland), conductor Claudio Desderi, etc.
Veronica Anuşca has been highly acclaimed for her interpretation when performing in some of the many roles in her repertoire. Her more recent appearances include Adina from „L’Elisir d’Amore” (G. Donizetti), Norina from „Don Pasquale” (G. Donizetti), Rosina from „Il Barbiere di Siviglia” (G. Rossini) and Susanna from „Le Nozze di Figaro” (W.A. Mozart). In 2011, Veronica Anuşca has performed several times already on the National Opera House’s stage in G. Donizetti’s Rita (in the role of Rita), G.F. Haendel’s Alcina (in the role of Morgana) and J. Strauss’s Die Fledermaus (in the role of Adele). Needless to say, all performances have been highly prized by both audience and musical critique.
In light of her evolution so far and despite her youth, Veronica Anuşca is widely regarded as an already accomplished soprano with a wide repertoire in a variety of genres and styles. This ability to approach different if not opposite types of music demonstrates intelligence, musical knowledge and a deep passion for singing as well as a voice with limitless possibilities.

Ladislau Csendes

Ladislau Csendes (b.1964) graduated the National University of Music Bucharest, as violinist and obtained a doctor’s degree in musicology (Theory of musical interpretation). He attended master classes in musical analysis with G.Ligeti (Szombathely1990) and violin with A.Gertler (Bruxelles1981, 1983) and P.Csaba (Paris1990).

Invited to perform in Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Cyprus, Denmark, Egypt, France, Germany, Greece, Holland, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Moldavia, Poland, Portugal, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom and also in important international festivals: Wien Modern(2003), George Enescu (2003), Warsaw Autumn Festival (Poland) 2002, Haydn Festival, Radio Bucharest (Romania) 2001, Appenzeller Winter, St. Gallen (Switzerland) 2000, Bach non stop, Radio Bucharest (Romania) 2000, World Music Days, Bucharest (Romania) 1999, Silezian Contemporary Music Festival, Katovice (Poland) 1998, Tage für Neue Music Darmstadt (Germany) 1996, International New Music Week, Bucharest (Romania) 1995-2006, Bemus, Belgrade (Yougoslavia)  1994, Concerti per l’Europa, Venice (Italy) 1992.

As soloist of G. Enescu Philarmonic, of Virtuozii from Bucharest, of Romanian Radio Orchestras a.o., he collaborated with famous romanian conductors as Horia Andreescu, Ludovic Bács, Sergiu Comissiona, Corneliu Dumbrăveanu, Ilarion Ionescu-Galaţi, Emil Simon. He created an impressive number of Romanian world premiers – such as Caprices et Ragas for violin and orchestra, by Aurel Stroe(1997) and Malinconia furiosa for viola and orchestra by Anatol Vieru (2003). His discography includes chamber and concertant works for violin, viola, viola d’amore from different historical periods and cultural areas: early music as well as contemporary music.

Raluca Stratulat

Violinist Raluca Stratulat was born in Bucharest in 1980. She graduated the National University of Music Bucharest, then she attended Master Classes with Gerhard Hamann, Alexandru Gavrilovici, Şerban Lupu, Monte Belknap, Ladislau Csendes, Wolfgang Klos. She colaborated with orchestras such as Orchestra Internazionale Giovanile da Camera, Philharmonie Junge Donau and the George Enescu National Philharmonic Orchestra. She participated in various music festivals, including the Dinu Lipatti Music Festival, Young People and The Music Festival, Shumsky Musicfest, International New Music Week (Bucharest 2012), Baroque Week (Bucharest 2012). As a violonist, she won several national and international awards.
She performed in concerts and recitals in Romania, Greece, Austria, Germany, Hungary, Belgium, Italy and The United States of America. She currently teaches chamber music at the George Enescu National College in Bucharest since 2005. One of the most appreciated new music performers and promoters in Romania, Raluca Stratulat is also a member of the SonoMania ensemble.

Vlad Maistorovici

One of the most exciting young artists of his generation to emerge from Romania, Vlad Maistorovici is in great demand both as performer and composer. Highlights of 2012 are collaborations with Nigel Kennedy at St Prex Classics, conductor Francois-Xavier Roth at Festival d’Aix-en-Provence.

This season will see Vlad Maistorovici perform at St Prex Classics with guitarist Johannes Moller in an eclectic programme featuring Paganini’s Sonata Concertata, as well as new works by Moller and Maistorovici. The same festival will feature Maistorovici performing with Nigel Kennedy, with the Mercury Quartet and the Nigel Kennedy Quintet. This season he will perform Pierrot Lunaire with the Mercury Quartet and soprano Linda Hirst at Jardins Musicaux as part of the quartet’s Pierrot Lunaire Anniversary Tour, Meridian Festival in Bucharest and London’s King’s Place as part of the European Union National Institute for Culture Debussy celebrations. Starting September 2012, Maistorovici is taking up the post of Solo Violin of Ensemble Contrechamps, for an initial period of 1 year.

His performances display ’technical assuredness, balanced by interpretative willingness to push boundaries that can, and often does make sparks fly’ (MusicWeb International). Winner of Remember Enescu International Competition, The Tillett Trust and a Finalist of Young Concert Artist Trust, he has performed concerti and recitals that have included appearances at major venues such as London Wigmore Hall, South Bank Centre, The Sage Gateshead, Salle Flagey Bruxelles, Kulturhaus Helferei Zurich, Merkin Hall New York, as well as various festivals across Europe, with orchestras such as the European Union Chamber Orchestra, Lausanne Chamber Orchestra, South Bank Sinfonia, Bucharest Radio Orchestra. A committed chamber musician, he has had the privilege of performing from an early age alongside renowned musicians and ensembles, such as Pierre Amoyal, Dora Schwartzberg, Jeremy Menuhin, Ivry Gitlis, Gordan Nikolich.

A versatile performer, he dedicates a lot of time and energy to experimentation and new music. In 2011 he performed Pascal Dusapin’s Violin ConcertoQuad as part of the Festival Archipel Geneva. He is a member of The Mercury Quartet, a dynamic ensemble that focuses on experimental projects. 2011 has seen the launch of Mercury Radar, a seasonal concert series at London’s The Forge, sponsored by PRS, MBF and Vaughan-Williams Trust, which has commissioned so far over 10 works for the quartet. The ensemble also have explored uncharted territories in contemporary classical music improvisation, as can be heard in Mercury Acoustic, an innovative album of live-composed music and DJ remixes, released in 2010 by NonClassical and produced by Gabriel Prokofiev. October 2012 sees the launch of Mercury Cinema, an innovative concept which couples old classics and new cinematic commissions with the sound world of the Mercury Quartet.

This year also sees a number of notable appearences as composer. After a critically acclaimed premiere at the Barbican Hall in London, his work for orchestra Halo, commissioned by the London Symphony Orchestra and the Helen Hamlyn Trust, will receive its continental premiere at Festival d’Aix-en-Provence, by the Orchestre Mediteranee de Jeunes under the direction of Francois-Xavier Roth, as well as at the Marseille Theatre Sylvain. The Romanian Institute in London have opened this year’s cultural season with a concert entitled Night Music, a multimedia collaboration with artist Cristian Luchian, with a focus on Maistorovici’s chamber works to date. In February 2013 the Paul Constantinescu Philharmonic of his native town of Ploiesti will feature Maistorovici both as violinist and composer, with a selection of his orchestral works. Maistorovici is currently working on his first violin concerto, for the Ukrainean violinist Valery Sokolov.

Maistorovici’s music is characterised by ‘vivid contrasts’ (London Financial Times) ‘clarity of expression’ (Actualitatea Muzicala Bucharest). In 2003, his string quartet Night Music was awarded the George Enescu Composition Prize. Premiered at the George Enescu International Fesival, a string orchestra version was subsequently commissioned by the European Union Chamber Orchestra. He is an allumnus of the Britten-Pears Programme, where, under the mentorship of Oliver Knussen, Colin Matthews and Magnus Lindberg, he composed Ocean Wing for chamber orchestra, which was premiered at the Aldeburgh Festival in 2008. In 2010 Antoine Francoise premiered transScent for solo piano at the Cadogan Hall, which was awarded the Clive Christian ‘Sound of Perfume’ Award. The same year, the London Philharmonic Orchestra commissioned Fanfara, which was performed four times under the direction of David Angus as part of the “Bright Sparks” Education Programme. The same year he composed Microcosm for the LSO Discovery Panufnik Scheme, which was rehearsed and performed publicly by the London Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Francois Xavier-Roth at LSO St. Luke’s. The success of the work resulted in a commission from the LSO to write Halo for large orchestra, which was premiered by the orchestra at the Barbican Hall in March 2011, in a concert conducted by Sir Colin Davis. The same year, St Prex Classics presented Carte Blanche to Vlad Maistorovici: “Tribute to Freddie Mercury” a cross-over project that features classical redentions of compositions Freddie Mercury intertwined with chamber works by Vlad Maistorovici.

Maistorovici has given violin and composition masterclasses at the Lilla Akademien Stokholm, Dartington International Summer School (on the performance of Schoenberg’s Pierrot Lunaire), Bucharest National University of Music (where the Mercury Quartet annually workshop scores by the composition students). Born in Ploiesti, Romania (1985), he is a former pupil of the Carmen Sylva Art School where he studied violin with Adrian Ceapa and Ioana Croitoru, and piano with his mother, Sanda Hîrlav-Maistorovici. At age 16, at the recommendation of Lory Wallfisch, he gained a full scholarship at The Yehudi Menuhin School, where he continued his violin studies with Natalia Boyarskaya. He studied violin with Felix Andrievsky and composition with Mark-Anthony Turnage and Jonathan Cole at the Royal College of Music London, and later violin wth Pierre Amoyal on a Soloist Master Degree course at the Conservatoire de Lausanne.

Official website here.

MUSIC on internet: Halo

Laura Buruiană

Born in Bucharest in 1980, Laura Buruiana started playing the cello at the age of ten and studied from 1999 to 2004 with Prof. Vasile Tugui and Marin Cazacu. Further studies from 2004 with Prof. Frans Helmerson at the Cologne University of Music lead to her Master Degree in 2007. While taking part in master classes in Germany, France, the Netherlands and Romania, she also benefited from the advice of famous cellists.  A 1st Prize Winner of the Young Concert Artists Award in New York in 2003, which was additionally garnished with five special prizes, the Romanian cellist Laura Buruiana is quickly establishing a reputation worldwide as “a bonafide virtuoso, drawing a wealth of color, drama, and flowing line from her instrument” (The New York Times) in performances where “one might guess she would also be a very fine singer. She embraces her instrument as an extension of her own body, personifying a lyricism that was fitting for an instrument whose timbre is o close to that of the human voice.” (Washington Post).The same year, Laura also won the 1st Prize of the Premio Arturo Bonucci Competition in Rome.
As a soloist, Laura performed the 1st Shostakovich concerto in the Berlin Philharmonie together with the Berliner Symphoniker, the Dvořák concerto with the Bari Symphony while touring Italy, as well as Bach’s A Minor Concerto at the Rheingau Music Festival (Germany) with the Berlin Chamber Orchestra, in 2006. She also played with the Shanghai Orchestra in the Shanghai Grand Theatre. Under the aegis of Young Euro Classics in Berlin, she has been the soloist in the 1st cello concerto of the Romanian composer Anatol Vieru.
In 2005, she made her debut at the Enescu Festival in Bucharest, taking over the cello solo part in Paul Constantinescu’s Triple Concerto and was invited for a recital at the same festival in 2007.  Furthermore, she performed with all major orchestras in Romania, besides other orchestras in Europe, USA and Asia under the baton of conductors such as Oliver von Dohnányi, Gerhard Zimmermann, Cristian Mandeal, Horia Andreescu, Lorenzo Muti, Dorel Pascu, among others.Due to her great success at the New York competition, she has already toured extensively the USA, including concerts at Kennedy Center Washington, Kaufmann Hall New York, Boston, Merkin Hall New York, Pittsburgh, in Virginia, Connecticut, Ohio as well as at the Mostly Tchaikowsky Festival in Pella. Other venues and festivals in Europe included the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, the Diligentia Theatre The Hague and the Holland Music Sessions in the Netherlands, the Spoleto Festival and venues in Rome, Milan and Venice (UNESCO gala) in Italy, Fontainebleau Castle and the “Rencontres Franco-Roumaines” in France, the festivals at Santander and Toroella de Montgri in Spain, the Glyptotek Copenhagen, Salle de concert des Invalides in Paris, Salle Flagey in Brussels and the Bruno Walter Society in Luxemburg. In Germany, Laura appeared repeatedly at the Usedom Festival, the Konzerthaus Berlin, at the EXPO 2000 in Hanover and the Saarbrucken festival. In 2004, she performed twice the complete Beethoven sonatas.
Some critics for the Naxos CD: “This Naxos album features cellist Laura Buruiana and pianist Martin Tchiba in what could be a reference recording of these sonatas. Buruiana’s playing is technically brilliant, with spot-on intonation, sweeping musical gestures, and a clear understanding of the score and how her part dialogues with the piano. Likewise, Tchiba is a elegant pianist who produces a wealth of colors which are so necessary in the frequently changing tonal environment of the Second Sonata” (Mikel D. Brownell, All Music Magazine)“Cellist Laura Buruiana and pianist Martin Tchiba made one of the most remarkable CDs of the year” (Holger Hettinger (Deutschlandradio Kultur).
In 2012 she released her second CD for the label Zig-Zag Territoires: “Enescu – trios with piano” together with violinist Satenik Khourdoian and pianist Mara Dobresco with whom she formed the Trio Brancusi, CD which is a choice of France Musique for 2012 and received 5 diapasons. Together with pianist Matei Varga she has released her third album for Coviello Classics which includes the two famous cello sonatas by J Brahms. In 2013, Laura Buruiana is prepearing to release two more Cds with pianist Ferenc Vizi (F. Mendelssohn – Bartoldy – “Sonatas and variations concertantes for cello and piano”) and with Ana Bondue (J. S. Bach – “Sonatas for cello and piano/viola da gamba and hapsichord”), both released at the label Coviello Classics. As well, she will have concerts together with Trio Brancusi, Trio ALA, pianists Ferenc Vizi and Ana Bondue, soprano Adriana Epstein…
Official website here.

Marin Cazacu

Born on September 30th, 1956, at Vidra-Ilfov county, Marin Cazacu studied the cello at the Dinu Lipatti Music Lyceum in Bucharest with professor Ion Urcan, and afterwards at the Ciprian Porumbescu State Conservatoire with the well known professors Serafim Antropov and Aurel Niculescu. Furthermore, he improved his musical skills in Weimar with professor Mezö Lászlo and was the assistant of maestro Radu Aldulescu in the latter’s master classes in Costineşti and Sinaia. Marin Cazacu is a laureate of the international competitions held in Geneva, Markneukirchen, Leipzig, Bologna, Belgrade.

Since 1983, he has been a soloist of the George Enescu Philharmonic and has carried out an intense activity both in Romania and all over Europe, Asia and the two Americas, under the baton of a number of outstanding conductors: Ghennadi Rojdestvenski, Sergiu Comissiona, Lu Jia, Nanse Gum, Cristian Mandeal, Horia Andreescu, Antoni Ros Marba, Mendi Rodan, Misha Katz, Jean Périsson. He also performed as a member of different chamber music ensembles in the company of prestigious artists such as Vladimir Orlov, Valentin Gheorghiu, Radu Aldulescu, Mihaela Martin, Mirel Iancovici, Ilia Grubert, Jeremy Menuhin. Moreover, he is a member of the Pro Arte Trio (Trio in Residence at the Romanian Atheneum Concert Hall in Bucharest) and has contributed to the Voces Quartet. His name could be seen quite often in the ads of some important festivals such as those held in Berlin, Bratislava, Bucharest, Hong-Kong, Macao, Munich, Milan, Mateus, Osaka, Singapore, Seoul, Sofia, Tokio, Valencia, Venice.

Starting 1992, he has also worked as a professor at the Bucharest National University of Music, his students successfully asserting themselves in the Romanian and foreign concert halls. In 1998, he founded the Cellissimo Quartet together with Alexandra Guţu, Răzvan Suma and Olga Mănescu. Moreover, together with his students, he performed in recitals including 8 up to 12 cellos as part of the Violoncellissimo ensemble.

In 1999, Marin Cazacu set up the International Festival Enescu and the music of the world held every summer in Sinaia on the eve of great musician’s birthday (August 19th, 1881). For the organisation of this festival and the setting up of the first national youth orchestra (the Romanian Youth Orchestra under Cristian Mandeal’s baton), he was rewarded (in 2008) with the Award for the Project of the year by VIP and Actualitatea Muzicală magazines.

In 2004, he was granted the Meritul Cultural (Cultural Merit) Order with the Chevalier degree, while in 2006, he obtained the title of Doctor of Music with Summa cum laude, for the thesis entitled Cello concertos in the Romanian musical creation from Constantin Dimitrescu to Pascal Bentoiu.

His recordings for Electrecord, Olympia, BMG and AIX Records are a definite evidence of the qualities of this „excellent musician” as Ghennadi Rojdestvenski has called him.

His performances have been enthusiastically commented upon by the audience and the media, all over the world.

Marin Cazacu plays a Lorenzo Ventapane cello (1820). (source)

Laurenţiu Darie

Bassoonist Laurentiu Darie was born in 1977 inGalati,Romania, where he started his musical education at the age of ten. After he graduated in bassoon at theUniversityofMusic-Bucharest, he went toMunichin order to improve his musical interpretation with Prof. Marco Postinghel. Here he had the opportunity to attend master classes held by Reinhard Goebel (baroque music), Maurice Bourgue (oboe), Zakar Bron (violin). He has also participated in summer master classes for bassoon with well-known teachers: Klaus Thunemann, David Rachor, Frank Lebloi and Andreas Schultze-Florey. He has won the first prize in several national competitions. Laurentiu Darie has collaborated with The Munich Symphonic Orchestra, Philharmonie der Nationen, The Lebanese National Symphony Orchestra, The State Symphony Orchestra of Mexico and The Vienna Walzer Orchestra. Since 1998, he is principal bassoon player inBucharest”George Enescu” Philharmonic Orchestra and in 2011, as part of the “YouTube Symphony Orchestra”, he perfomed in Sidney Opera House and the concert was the largest live stream YouTube ever made. Conductor Michael Tilson Thomas and Los Angeles Time noted Romanian bassoonist Laurentiu Darie’s excellent playing.

Maria Chifu

Maria Chifu was born in Bucharest in 1981. She studied bassoon at the George Enescu High School and then she was the student of professor Miltiade Nenoiu at the National University of Music in Bucharest. She attended professor’s Heintz Righebauch (Germany) and David Rachor (USA) Masterclasses in 2001 and 2002. She studied at the Janacek Music Academy,Brno, Czech Republic during Ceepus scholarship, and at the Universitaet fuer Musik und darstellende Kunst , Graz, Austria, completing her masters degree.

Since 2012 she has a PhD in Music Interpretation at the National University of Music in Bucharest, with a dissertation on the bassoon in contemporary Romanian music.

Maria Chifu played in the Celibidache Orchestra and now she is a very active participant of the contemporary musical life, both as member of ensembles and as solo player. Maria played in international festivals such as Hilltown New Music Festival, the International Week of New Music, Tom Johnson Festival, “Meridian” International New Music Festival, The 18th Festival of Contemporary Music – Happoman 2012 (South Korea). She had concerts in Romania, Ireland, Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic, Bulgaria.  She is a member of the synchretic group SeduCant, based in Bucharest, where she performs as a musician (bassoon, recorder, percussions) as well as a dancer.

Ana Chifu


Ana Chifu, one of the most active and recognized performers and supporters to promote the classical and new-modern music in Romania, Greece and throughout Europe, Ana Chifu studied flute in Bucharest, in Dortmund, Germany and Paris, having won seven international and national awards and prizes. Her concert activity brought her in countries like France, Holland, Germany, Poland, India, Korea, Ireland, Italy, Finland, Bulgaria and Greece.

Ana has collaborated with the Athens Symphony Orchestra as principal flute. She has worked in the educational program of the Greek National Opera House“Opera Interactive in Primary Schools” throughout elementary schools in all the Greek territory. She has collaborated with the Greek Radio Symphony OrchestraΚαμεράτα Ορχήστρα των Φίλων της Μουσικής/ Armonia Atenea and the Bucharest Philharmonic Orchestra “George Enescu”. She was a member of the Metropolitan Chamber Orchestra of Bucharest and is a member of the contemporary music ensembles Profil-Sinfonietta, Propuls, devotion Moderna,, InterArt and SonoMania. Ana is a founding member of the Syncretic group of contemporary arts seduCant, creating and taking part in interactive multimedia shows both as a musician (flute, percussion) and as a dancer.

Ana played solo concerts with the Orchestre de Flytes Français, the Concerto Orchestra, Lyceum Strings Orchestra and Profil-Sinfonietta. She has been invited in famous contemporary music festivals such as International Festival of Contemporary Music “Warsaw Autumn” - Poland, International Week of New Music- Romania, Meridian Festival- Romania, Hilltown New Music Festival- Ireland, “Tom Johnson” Festival- Germany, the Festival of Contemporary Music Happoman (Masan, South Korea).

In 2012 obtained her doctorate degree from the National University of Music in Bucharest, receiving “summa cum laude” (highest) praise, writing about the music of the 20th and 21st century. The book is in the process of publication.

Recently, Ana invited to ARFA (Romanian Association of women in Art) and is now an active member.

Future performances include recitals and chamber music concerts in Switzerland and Austria, as well as solo performances with orchestra in India.

Ana is an active member (in activities such as in India, Fukushima-Japan, Greece, Amazon, Sierra Leone and other parts of the world) of the non-profit organization Keys of Change. Keys of Change is a charitable organization made up of people with different backgrounds who believe deeply that playing and sharing music can make this world a better place. Founded in 2011 to promote the improvement and upgrading of the lives of children and youth around the world through music education and access to live performances of classical music.

Official website HERE.