Agnès Pyka - Sébastien Hurtaud
Agnès Pyka is the first prize winner for violin and chamber music from the Scuola di alto Perfezionamento Musicale at Saluzzo, Italy. She is even a graduate of the Conservatory ‘Ferenc Liszt’ in Budapest, Hungary: there she even obtained first prize for violin studying with Ferenc Halasz and vilmos Szabadi and the first prize for chamber music in Ferenc Rados’ class. Pyka even obtained the Master’s degree in performance from the Toronto University, Canada in Lorand Fenyves’ class.
Pyka placed first at the young soloists National Competition ‘Hart House’ in Toronto, Canada, the ‘Schubert’ National Competition and at Moncalieri European Competition, both in Italy.She has played concerti and recitals in different countries including the USA, Canada, Hungary, Italy and also is a memeber of prominent ensembles including Musicatreize (1st violin), the Ensemble Instrumental de Nice and the Baroque ensemble Da Camera (soloist and 1st violin).
At present she also teaches at the conservatory in Toulon. She founded the association Accords en Scène in 2005 and has been its artistic director since then, as well as the director of L’Ensemble des Équilibres.
Agnès Pyka studied all over the world: she joined Scuola di Alto Perfezionamento of Saluzzo (Italy) and the Liszt academy in Busapest (where she received first prizes for violin and chamber music) then moved in North America to work with Lorand Fenyves (Toronto University). She won first prizes in several international competitions such as National Jeunes Solistes Hart House Compétition (Toronto), National Schubert Competition (Italy), Concours Européen de Moncalieri (Italy), and played in France and abroad as a soloist & lead violinist.
In 2006 she created the chamber music ensemble Des Equilibres in which she performs as first violin and acts as Artistic Director. In 2011 she recorded with Des Equilibres a first CD, dedicated to Sandor Veress’ trio and string quartets. The recording of the second quartet was a ‘world première’, rated 4star in the well-known French magazine CLASSICA.
In January 2013 her second CD has been released: the 44 duets by Bela Bartok, performed with the tcheck violonist Jan Talich.
Agnes also holds a teaching position at Toulon regional music school (Conservatoire à Rayonnement Régional).
Interesting fact: she plays a violin crafted by Stefano Scarampella c.1901
Sebastien Hurtaud and his pianist Pamela Hurtado will be the first artists to record the complete cello sonatas by Paul Hindemith for the Naxos label in 2013.
Sebastien Hurtaud is recognized as one of the most talented cellists of his generation. Born in musician and navigator family, his sister was pianist and his brother is tenor and baroque flute player. Sebastien performed the Saint-Säens Concerto with La Rochelle Chamber Orchestra when he was only twelve years old. Since the age of fifteen he has been concertizing regularly as a soloist and chamber musician with world leading musician as Antoni Wit, Werner Andreas Albert, Arie Van Beek, Edmon Colomer, Chee-Yun, Stephen Prutsman, Paméla Hurtado, Charles Wadsworth, Thomas Schwan and many others...
Sebastien Hurtaud is the first French cellist to be awarded First Prize at the Adam International Cello Competition (New Zealand, 2009). Sebastien Hurtaud also won Third Prize at the New York Naumburg Foundation International Cello Competition in 2008 and was Finalist of the Aldo Parisot International Competition in South Korea in 2007.
He has performed in very prestigious concert halls and international festivals in Europe, USA, Asia and New Zealand, such as New York Metropolitan Museum, Theatre National Mogador Salle Cortot in Paris, Haden Freeman Concert Hall, Dallas Caruth Concert Hall, Town Hall in Christchurch, Icho Hall in Tokyo, Deauville Festival, Cordes-sur-Ciel, St Jean Cap Ferras, Salon Musical of Belfort, Manchester Brahms Festival, International Cello Festival of Beauvais under the baton of Edmon Colomer, Charles Wadworth and Friends chamber music serie in Nashville concert Hall, Cello festival in Fort Worth, ’New Virtuoses’’ at Salle Cortot in Paris, Taïwan Youth Symphonic Orchestra, the Wind players of Bordeaux Symphonic Orchestra, the Picardie Symphonic Orchestra, Vexin Festival, Laon Festival, Festival Musique en Ré, Classique au vert, Festival st Maurice, Pouy-sur-Vannes, New-Zealand, La Rochelle concert Hall, Colmar Opera and many others!
You can read on different reviews that Sebastien is acclaimed by the Press Union Newpaper: The highlight of the concert was the Concerto for cello and wind band of Gulda. The public discovered Sebastien Hurtaud. He performed this concerto, inspired by gypsy and jazz melody, with an impressive energy, a strong feeling of rhythm and an amazing concentration during all the music piece.
For the audience this moment was like a breath of euphoria.
Sebastien is deeply interested in discovering and premiering new contemporary works. Thanks to the Salon Belfort Festival, the Dallas Chamber Music Society and Voice of change festival, composers such as Jonathan Grimbert, Thomas Schwan and Simon Sargon dedicated him their cello sonata and trios.
During his studies, Sebastien Hurtaud received the most important recognitions from several world-leading music schools: First Prize from the Conservatoire National Superieur de Musique de Paris (course of Mr. Jean-Marie Gamard), Artist Certificate from Southern Methodist University (course of Manuel Diaz), Distinction Prize for a Post-Graduate Diploma from the Manchester Royal Northern College of Music (course of Karina Georgian).
Sebastien Hurtaud played in several masterclasses with Mstistlav Rostropovich, Arto Noras, Aldo Parisot, Alexander Rudin, Benjamin Zander, Pierre Laurent Aymard, Daria Hovora, Réna Scherechevskaya, Sergiu Celibidache, Menahem Pressler...
Sebastien play on a wonderful modern cello made specially for him by the instrument maker Stephan Von Baehr.