Eighteen young musicians will have the opportunity to practice with the members of the Athens State Orchestra this season, as part of their training at the newly established Young Musicians’ Academy, founded by the country’s oldest standing orchestra thanks to a Stavros Niarchos Foundation donation.
Applications are already coming in from young musicians (who must be no more than 28 years of age) for positions in the strings and percussion sections, while the deadline is September 23. The next phase will be auditions for the selection of the newly founded academy’s first scholars.
“A small percentage of aspiring musicians will pursue the tough career of a soloist, while some will become teachers and others will join orchestras. Good knowledge of an instrument is not enough: A musician must be able to adapt to an artistic ensemble, it must suit his or her personality,” Stefanos Tsialis, the orchestra’s artistic director, told Kathimerini.
The Young Musicians’ Academy will start operating in two phases: From this year, 18 students will be trained in the strings and percussion instruments, while next year, another 18 woodwind and brass musicians will be added to the academy’s talent mix.
The aspiring artists will be trained by a number of the ensemble’s leading musicians as well as other artists, including Chinese violin soloist and Bern University of Arts professor Tianwa Yang and German-born, award-winning cellist Gabriel Schwabe, among others.
“It’s really important for leading musicians to pass their experience onto the younger generation in terms of how they play in an orchestra. The establishment of the academy perfectly combines the artistic and social initiatives taken by the ensemble over the last few years,” added Tsialis.
The academy’s first, pilot stage will conclude with a concert set for June 7, 2017. On the night, the academy’s young musicians will join forces with the ensemble’s professional musicians under the baton of acclaimed German maestro Christoph Poppen, who is also a violin professor at Munich’s University of Music and Performing Arts.