Jozef Luptak is one of the most prominent figures on the Slovak musical scene. He holds the Award of the Minister of Culture for his achievements as a concert cello soloist and as artistic director and founder of the festival Convergence. He was also nominated for the prestigious Cristal Wing Award in Slovakia and won several international competitions, such as the Cello Competition of Slovak Conservatories in 1986, the jury prize at the Murcia Cello Competition In Spain, the BANFF Centre Long Term Residency Scholarship, the May Mukle Cello Prize at the Royal Academy of Music In London, and the Frico Kafenda Award in 2009. He graduated at the University of Performing Arts (VSMU) in his hometown, Bratislava, and subsequently with Robert Cohen at the Royal Academy of Music, London. Jozef's London experience and the lack of a chamber music scene in his hometown inspired him to create an international chamber music festival Konvergencie (Convergence). From its first edition in 2000 the festival has received excellent reviews by both professional and general audience. Jozef has introduced many prominent artists to the Slovak audience - The Hilliard Ensemble, Jan Garbarek, Doric String Quartet, Fine Ans Quartet - just to name a few. In 2003 he was appointed artistic director of the 7th International Festival of Contemporary Music Melos-Ethos In Bratislava. Jozef Is actively performing throughout the world. His recent concert highlights include: performing with The Hilliard Ensemble, recitals in USA. UK, Italy, performing at Kuhmo Chamber Music Festival, a concert tour in New Zealand, master classes in Italy and Slovakia, concerts at festivals in Charleston (with Robert Cohen) and Arcus Temporum in Pannonhalma (with Gija Kancheli and Gidon Kremer) as well as world premieres of the Cello Concertos by Peter Machajdlk (BHS) Jevgeni lrshai (Convergence Festival), and Peter Zagar (Slovak Radio Orchestra).
His path as a concert soloist has brought him to play with conductors such as Andrew Parrot, Jiří Bělohlávek, Leoš Svárovský, Daniel Gazon, Domonkos Heja and Andrew Mogrelia. He plays regularly with renown chamber music partners from Slovakia and abroad - Daniel Rowland, Nora Skuta, Igor Karsko, Ronald Sebesta, Robert Cohen, Vladimir Mendelssohn, Beny Schmid, Rena Sharon. Peter Mikulas, Mark Gothoni, lvo Varbanov, etc. Jozef does not limit himself to the "classical": he often joins cross-genre projects with such artists as Marian Varga (Slovak rock legendary pianist/composer), Julee Glaub (American singer), Jeff Johnson (singer and producer), Brian Dunning (Irish ftutist). Multicultural and multi-ethnical projects play a specal rote in Jozef's most recent musical journey: 'after Phurikane' (ancient Roma songs played anew by authentic Roman singers) and Chassidic Songs (together with the Bratislava Rabbi Baruch Myers). Part of Jozef's search for his own musical expression is shown in his collaborations with contemporary composers (Tenney, Krauze, Zagar, lrshal, Matej, Ayres, Wolff, Jeffery, Machajdfk, etc.), which resulted In world premlere recordings, such as the World Premiere CD of Vladimir Godár's "Music for Cello", 2-CD of complete Bach Soto Cello Suites (first Slovak recording) as well as his own project "CELLO": a recording of five new compositions inspired by Bach's 1st Suite, including improvisations using cello, his own voice, and a beatbox. His most recent classical release is a live recording of his London Oebut concert in St. John's Smith Square. He is currently planning to produce a CO of his
cello and vocal improvisation, as well as a CD series reliving the concerts from the Convergence Festival.
Johannes Brahms often consolidated his mastery of freshly explored domains by writing two examples in a specific genre in quick succession. His output consequently features such complementary couplings as the Piano Quartets nos. 1 and 2, (Op.25 and 26), the String Quartets Op.51 nos.1 and 2, the Clarinet Trio Op.114 and Clarinet Quintet Op.115, Six Piano Pieces Op118 and Four Piano Pieces Op.119 and, in the field of orchestral music, the Academic Festival Overture Op.80 and Tragic Overture Op.81. A notable exception to this trend is provided by the two sonatas for cello, which are separated by some 21 years and reflect the composer’s changing circumstances: the first is the product of a young man serving notice of his scholarship and maturity, while the second is the work of an older man writing at the peak of his powers with remarkable vigour and intensity. More >>