VAN KUIJK QUARTET – Winner of the 1st Prize, Haydn Prize, and Beethoven Prize at the 2015 Wigmore Hall International String Quartet Competition in London, the Van Kuijk Quartet is also a laureate of the Aix-en-Provence Festival Academy and the FNAPEC Ensembles Music Competition in France. Formed in 2012, the quartet was rewarded early on with the First Prize at the 2013 Trondheim International Chamber Music Competition. After early studies with the Ysaÿe Quartet, the Van Kuijk went on to study at the Escuela Superior de Música Reina Sophia in Madrid under the tutelage of Günter Pichler. An established presence at major international venues, the quartet has also worked with Gerhard Schulz, André Roy, Heime Müller and the Vogler Quartet.
Valentin Erben – Born in Austria, Valentin Erben studied cello with Paul Freidel, Walter Reichardt and Tobias Kühne. In 1963, he attended a masterclass in Siena where he met his future mentor and pedagogue, French cellist André Navarra. Winner of the 1968 ARD International Cello Competition in Munich, he returned to Vienna in 1969 and co-founded the world famous Alban Berg Quartet and remained its cellist ever since. Member of the Lucern Festival Orchestra under the direction of Claudio Abbado from 2004-2007, Valentin Erben has taught at the University of Music in Vienna for more than 40 years.
With a busy schedule of concerts as a soloist and chamber musician, Mr. Erben also gives musical lectures and masterclasses worldwide, and is known for his numerous collaborations with various composers, singers and dancers.
Mathieu Herzog – Violist, conductor, composer and arranger Mathieu Herzog is a founding member of the Ebène Quartet, which has won the Bordeaux International String Quartet Competition and the ARD Competition in Munich. Together with the Ebène, Mr. Herzog has performed in some of the most prestigious venues in the world. With extensive experience and years of close collaboration and tutelage by such artists as Mitsuko Uchida, Gyorgy Kurtag, and Menahem Pressler, Mr. Herzog decided in 2014 to devote himself to conducting. He was awarded First Prize at the London Classical Soloist Orchestra Competition in London, as well as the Édito Musica prize in Budapest. Working alongside Semyon Bychkov, he earned an immediate invitation to become his assistant.
As a devoted teacher, Mr. Herzog works with many young quartets who have been awarded several prizes at international competitions. Passionate about literature and history, he is currently working on a libretto based on the life of Georges Bizet.