«In this wonderful ensemble, each musician is able to preserve his own individuality. There is dialogue as well as venturesome tension…»
The Oliver Schnyder Trio (OST) is celebrating the tenth anniversary of its formation in 2022/23. The ensemble made its debut in the Zurich Tonhalle and shortly afterwards released its first CD on the RCA Red Seal label. Featuring Schubert's two piano trios, it was hailed by the Austrian arts journal Die Bühne as “a new benchmark recording”. CH Media voted both this release and its successor, comprising all of Brahms’s piano trios, the Best Swiss Classical Album of the Year. In 2015 Sony Classical released a double CD, WinterreiseN, with the German tenor Daniel Behle that was voted CD of the Month by Opernwelt magazine, while Pizzicato of Luxembourg honoured it with its Supersonic Award. The Trio’s recording of all of Beethoven’s piano trios for Sony Classical likewise garnered the highest international praise. OST’s album Bohemian Rhapsodies showcasing works by Smetana and Dvořák was released on the Prospero label in 2022 and is currently among the recordings shortlisted for the German Record Critics’ Prize. Releases planned for 2023/24 include the trios of Mendelssohn and Shostakovich, including Shostakovich’s Piano Quintet with Julia Fischer and Nils Mönkemeyer, and Beethoven’s Triple Concerto with the ORF Radio Symphony Orchestra of Vienna under Yi-Chen Lin.
Important stages in the ensemble’s history have included acclaimed appearances at the Schwetzingen Festival, the Stuttgart Liederhalle, Frankfurt’s Alte Oper, Cologne’s WDR Broadcasting House, the Baden-Baden Festival, the Septembre Musical Festival in Montreux, the Linz Bruckner Festival, the Berne Meisterzyklus series of concerts, the Ittingen Whitsun Concerts, the Menuhin Festival in Gstaad, London’s Wigmore Hall, Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw and Muziekgebouw and regular tours of Asia, including appearances with the National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra. The ensemble has also held residencies at the Hirzenberg Festival, at the Musikdorf Ernen Festival and at Schloss Elmau. Among the other musicians with whom the OST has appeared are Daniel Behle, Julia Fischer, Vilde Frang, Martin Grubinger, Nils Mönkemeyer and Lars Anders Tomter.
Oliver Schnyder studied with Homero Francesch in Zurich and with Leon Fleisher in Baltimore, making his debut at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, and with the Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra under David Zinman (Orpheum Young Soloists on Stage). Since then he has appeared as a soloist and chamber musician in most of the world’s leading centres of music, including New York’s Carnegie Hall, the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Moscow’s Great Hall, the Vienna Musikverein, the Cologne Philharmonie, the Lucerne Culture and Congress Centre, Munich’s Philharmonie, Herkulessaal and Prinzregententheater, the Tokyo Opera City Concert Hall, the Seoul Arts Center and London’s Wigmore Hall, while among the major international festivals where he has appeared are Lucerne, Gstaad, Schwetzingen, Heidelberg, Hohenems and Schwarzenberg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Linz, Frankfurt, Garmisch and the Ruhr Piano Festival. Among the orchestras with which Oliver Schnyder has performed are the Academy of St Martin in the Fields, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, the Danish National Symphony Orchestra, the Philharmonia of London, the WDR Symphony Orchestra of Cologne, the Korean Symphony Orchestra, the Hong Kong Sinfonietta, the Dortmund Philharmonic, the South-West German and the Württemberg Chamber Orchestra, the Tchaikovsky Symphony Orchestra of Moscow, the National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra, the ORF Radio Symphony Orchestra of Vienna and all the leading Swiss symphony and chamber orchestras. Among the conductors with whom he has worked are Ivor Bolton, Semyon Bychkov, Vladimir Fedoseyev, James Gaffigan, Philippe Jordan, Sir Roger Norrington, Michail Jurowski, Mario Venzago and David Zinman. As a chamber recitalist and lied accompanist Oliver Schnyder has also worked internationally with many eminent musicians. His award-winning recordings have appeared on the RCA Red Seal, Sony Classical, Telos, Capriccio, Berlin Classics and Prospero labels, garnering multiple accolades that include a German Record Critics’ Prize, a place in Kulturspiegel’s bestseller list, a Diapason d’Or, a Choc de Classica, a Fono Forum Recommendation of the Month and a Pizzicato Supersonic Award. Oliver Schnyder is co-founder and artistic co-director of the Piano District series of concerts in Baden, Switzerland, co-intendant of the Lenzburgiade Festival and artistic director of La Prairie Arts Centre in Bellmund.
Andreas Janke, is the principal concertmaster of the Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra. He was born into a family of German and Japanese musicians in Munich and studied in Igor Ozim’s masterclass at the Salzburg Mozarteum and with the Hagen Quartet. Even as a young musician he was already winning prizes at international competitions, including the Queen Elisabeth Competition in Brussels, the Fritz Kreisler Competition in Vienna and the Prague Spring Competition. As a solo artist he has appeared in many leading venues in Europe and Asia, including Vienna’s Musikverein and Konzerthaus, the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, the Munich Philharmonie, London’s Wigmore Hall, the Zurich Tonhalle and the Taipei National Concert Hall, while the orchestras with which he has performed include the London Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Philharmonic, the Belgian National Orchestra, the Academy of St Martin in the Fields and the Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra. He is additionally a welcome visitor both as a soloist and as a chamber recitalist at many national and international festivals. Among his chamber partners have been Julia Fischer, Nils Mönkemeyer, Martin Grubinger, Vilde Frang, Jörg Widmann and Martin Fröst. In 2013 he was appointed professor of violin at the Zurich University of the Arts. He gives regular masterclasses both at home and abroad. Andreas Janke performs on the “Hozier–Andrews” violin made by Carlo Bergonzi in Cremona between 1733 and 1739 and placed at his disposal by Mercedes-Benz Automobil AG of Zurich.
Benjamin Nyffenegger, has been principal cellist with the Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra since 2008. His international career as a soloist and as a chamber musician – including as cellist with the Julia Fischer Quartet – has taken him to leading centres of music in Europe and Asia. Among these venues have been London’s Wigmore Hall, the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Munich’s Prinzregententheater, the Vienna Musikverein, the Leipzig Gewandhaus, the Zurich Tonhalle and the Taipei National Concert Hall. Among the major international festivals where he has performed are the Schwetzingen Festival, the Prague Spring Festival, the Menuhin Festival in Gstaad, the Frankfurt Festival, the Linz Bruckner Festival, the Septembre Musical Festival in Montreux, the Schwarzenberg Schubertiade and the Pärnu Festival. Among the chamber musicians with whom Benjamin Nyffenegger has shared a platform are Leif Ove Andsnes, Yulianna Avdeeva, Daniel Hope, Marc Bouchkov, Sarah Chang, Wolfram Christ, Vilde Frang, Roberto Gonzalez-Monjas, Maximilian Hornung, Daniel Müller-Schott, Alina Pogostkina, Maxim Rysanov, Jörg Widmann and William Youn. As a soloist he has performed with the Academy of St Martin in the Fields, the Berne Symphony Orchestra, the Winterthur Musikkollegium, the Württemberg Chamber Orchestra of Heilbronn, the National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra and the Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra. He has also worked for numerous public broadcasting corporations throughout the whole of Europe. His first teacher was Magdalena Sterki-Hauri, after which he studied with Walter Grimmer at the Zurich University of the Arts, where he completed his studies under Thomas Grossenbacher in 2005, graduating with a diploma in concert performing. Benjamin Nyffenegger is artistic director of the SeetalClassics series of concerts at Seon in Switzerland.