"4 stars"BBC Music Magazine, 01-5-2014
The Netherlands Youth String Orchestra is the place to be for talented string play-
ers between the ages of 12 and 21. Its members include advanced students from
junior talent classes or those who are pre- paring to study at conservatory, as well
as pupils of private teachers and music schools. The orchestra’s aim is to train
young budding professionals and provide concerts at the highest levels. Everyone
is convinced by the enormous energy, infectious enthusiasm and extremely high
musical and technical standards of this young orchestra.
The Netherlands Youth String Orchestra rehearses every Saturday at the inspira-
tional new Conservatory in Amsterdam. It works on three programmes each
year, and every session ends with a series of concerts at important venues in the Netherlands and abroad. The programmes consist of a special mix of standard and less familiar repertoire. NYSO accompanies world-famous soloists, including Claron McFadden, Bart Schneeman, Cora Burggraaf and Liza Ferschtman, all of whom have links with the orchestra. The rehearsals and concerts are directed by violinist and conductor Bas Wiegers. There are also regular sectional rehearsals, directed by specialists from ensembles such as the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Amsterdam Sinfonietta and Cello Octet Amsterdam.
NYSO is the finest youth string orchestra in the Netherlands and therefore also the
finest learning base for talented string players at the very highest levels.
Bas Wiegers studied at both Amsterdam and Freiburg conservatories. As a violinist, he was a member of the Asko Ensemble and trio 7090, and a frequent guest in other ensembles such as Ives Ensemble, Remix Ensemble (Portugal), Anima Eterna, and the Netherlands Bachvereniging. As a conductor, Wiegers has the same broad musical fascination and undogmatic orientation that marks him as a violinist. He was guest conductor for a great number of ensembles and orchestras with a wide range of repertoire. He conducted Holland Symfonia, The Hague Philharmonic, the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra, the Netherlands Symphony Orchestra, the Gelders Orchestra, Amsterdam Sinfonietta,
Asko|Schönberg, the Nieuw Ensemble, Slagwerk Den Haag and many others.
He worked with many renowned soloists, e.g. Claron McFadden, Cora Burggraaf,
Liza Ferschtman, Bart Schneemann and Anssi Karttunen. Also active in the field of opera, Wiegers conducted “Noye´s Fludde” by Britten, “Les Mamelles de Tirésias” and “La Voix Humaine” by Poulenc and ”La Tragédie de Carmen” by Bizet/Brook. He conducted for various international festivals such as the Gaudeamus Festival, the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival, the London Almeida Festival and the Aldeburgh Music Festival. Being very active in the world of new music, Wiegers worked closely with Louis Andriessen, Theo Loevendie, Martijn Padding, Klaas de Vries, Klas Torstensson, George Benjamin, Oliver
Knussen, Michael Finnissy and many others. In September of 2012, he worked along-side Peter Eötvös with the Royal Concert- gebouw Orchestra as the second conductor in the Fourth Symphony by Charles Ives. He was assistant conductor of the same orchestra under Mariss Jansons in Amériques by Edgard Varèse and more recently under Susanna Mälkki during the Holland Festival 2012.
Violinist Liza Ferschtman, recipient of the 2006 Dutch Music Prize, the highest
government award in the Netherlands, is recognized as one of the most significant
artists of her generation. Her performances are known for their passionate and at the same time intellectual qualities. In recent seasons Liza Ferschtman has
performed with all the major Dutch orches- tras, such as the Royal Concertgebouw
Orchestra, Amsterdam Sinfonietta, Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, as well as international orchestras such as Orchestre National de Belgique, Bergen
Philharmonic, and the European Union Youth Orchestra.
As a daughter of Russian musicians, she started playing the violin when she was 5 years old and received her first violin les- sons from Philipp Hirschhorn. Attending master classes with Yvry Gitlis, Igor Oistrach and Aaron Rosand at a very young
age, her extraordinary talent was discovered immediately. Until 1998 she studied
with Herman Krebbers at the Conservatory of Amsterdam, after which she also worked with Ida Kavafian at the prestigious Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia and David Takeno in London.
In 2007 has been appointed artistic direc- tor of the Delft Chamber Music Festival,
the most prestigious chamber music festival of Holland. Liza has been a regular guest at the Concertgebouw Amsterdam since many years, where she performed numerous concertos with orchestra and the complete cycle of the Beethoven violin sonatas with Inon Barnatan at the series of the KAM (Stichting Kamermuziek Amsterdam). She also had a Carte Blanche at their famed
Robeco summer series.
Cora Burggraaf mezzo soprano
The Dutch mezzo soprano Cora Burggraaf graduated with distiction at the Royal
Conservatoire in The Hague in 2002. She pursued her vocal studies in London at the Royal College of Music and the National Opera Studio. She currently studies with Margreet Honig.
She has been the recipient of many prizes including the 2009/2010 ECHO Rising
Star Award, the 2006 Elizabeth Everts Prize, the second prize in the International
Vocalist Competition Den Bosch 2004, the 2003 Maggie Teyte Prize and the Miriam Licette Scholarship. Her studies in London were funded by the Dutch Fonds voor de Podiumkunsten and the Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds.
In opera, Burggraaf has appeared at the Salzburg Festival, the Royal Opera House in London (for which she was awarded ‘Most Promising Newcomer of the Year’ by The Observer), San Francisco Opera, Welsh National Opera, The Netherlands Opera, Garsington Opera, Opéra de Bordeaux and at the Aix-en-Provence Festival, BBC Proms and the Gergiev Festival. Forthcoming enga-
gements include her debut at the Bayerische Staatsoper, Munich and return to the Salzburg Festival and The Netherlands Opera.
She recently made her acting debut when she appeared with Theatre Artemis, and in the solo performance Ophelia with OT Theater Rotterdam. In this show she combined songs of Strauss and Chausson with spoken words by the eminent Dutch writer Bernlef.
She has worked with celebrated conductors such as Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Emmanuelle Haïm, Marc Minkowski, Seiji Osawa, Jaap van Zweden, HK Gruber, Steuart Bedford and many others. Future concert engagements will see her working with Phillippe Herreweghe, Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Frans Brüggen, Neeme Järvi and Peter Eötvös
BBC Music Magazine, 01-5-2014
THE Netherlands Youth Strin Orchestra, which nutures the talents of young budding professionals, presents a programme of music that showcases their infectious energy and enthusiasm.
Northern Echo , 13-3-2014