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Advent Concert I • Czech Carols and Rorates
František Xaver Thuri
Antonio Lucio Vivaldi
Georg Friedrich Händel
Czech Carols and Rorates
Jana Brožková oboe
Vladislav Borovka oboe
Jiří Zelba oboe
Tereza Doubravské oboe
Vojtěch Jouza oboe
Ondřej Roskovec bassoon
Jaroslav Kubita bassoon
Tomáš Františ bassoon
Martin Petrák bassoon
Olga Dlabačová harpsichord
Double Reed Orchestra
Ensemble of the Czech Double Reed Instrument Society
En Arché Chamber Choir
Vojtěch Jouza conductor
Rudolfinum — Suk Hall
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Jana Brožková studied oboe at the Prague Conservatory and later graduated from the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague in Jiří Mihule’s class. She achieved remarkable success while still a student of the Prague Conservatory as the winner of the international competition Concertino Praga 1983. In 1989 she was the absolute winner and recipient of a special prize at the Europäischen Musikpreis Zürich. Between 1988 and1993 she studied at the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague and in 1991 she won the third prize at the performance contest of the Prague Spring Music Festival. In 1997 she won the first prize at the international IDRS Gilllet Competition in Evaston, USA. At that time she has already performed as a renowned soloist both at home and abroad and played chamber music in ensembles In modo camerale and Afflatus Quintet, which won the first prize in the prestigious ARD International Music Competition in Munich in 1997. Since 1998 she has taught at the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague. She is also an active chamber musician and often plays as a soloist both in the Czech Republic and abroad. In the years 1987–2002 she was the principal oboist of the Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra, and her recordings of oboe concertos and other compositions for oboe are part of the valuable material of the radio archive. Since 2002 she has been the first solo oboist of the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra.
Born in Netolice (South Bohemia) in 1976, Vladislav Borovka began to play oboe under the direction of Jan Nováček there. 1990–1996 he was studying at Prague Conservatoire under the guidance of Bedřich Vobořil. During this period, he was awarded with several prizes such as Concertino Praga – National Award Second Prize and Competition of Conservatoires in Kroměříž Second Prize. 1996–2002 he was studying at Music Academy of Performing Arts in Prague in the class of Jiří Mihule. In 1998, he went through three-month scholarship at The Toho Gakuen Orchestra Academy in Toyama (Japan). In 2001, he became the Laureate of the Prague Spring International Music Competition winning the Third Prize and went to Paris to study on school year at Conservatoire of Paul Dukas in the class of Jean-Louis Capezzali. He attended numerous master classes with top musicians and professors.
In the Czech Republic, he has been the member of the Prague Philharmonia since its foundation in 1994, teaches on the Prague Conservatory and cooperates with The Czech Nonet and Prague Wind Ensemble. As a soloist, he has been playing with many orchestras: Prague Philharmonia, Prague Chamber Orchestra, Košice State Philharmonic Orchestra etc.
Since january 2011 he has been the member of the Czech Philharmonic.
Like many musicians, he inherited close relationship to music from his parents, mainly through singing in the car on the way to the family weekend cottage. Both his siblings, Zdeněk Zelba and Lenka Machová, also play in the Czech Philharmonic. He began playing the violin and later viola at local Music School but with the approaching conservatory entrance exams, he fell ill and was unable to practice. His father suggested switching to a wind instrument, such as oboe like the tall elegant Czech Philharmonic musician on TV. He then studied oboe at the Prague Conservatory with Pavel Verner, soloist of the Prague Symphony Orchestra and an excellent chamber musician, and Otto Trnka, first oboist of the National Theatre Orchestra. In 1985–1988, he taught at the local Music School in Modřany. In 1997, he graduated from the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague, having studied with Professor Jiří Mihule, the elegant man on TV, who had already been working with him in preparation for the conservatory entrance exams.
He first tasted chamber music while studying, he was a member of a wind quintet and later an octet. Thanks to these ensembles, he also had the chance to travel to the West (Germany and Sweden). His friends from the Army Artistic Ensemble, where he completed his compulsory military service, brought him back to string instruments. He played the viola in a cimbalom ensemble and even a string quartet. He was thinking about abandoning oboe altogether but succeeded in auditions to the Prague Symphony Orchestra FOK in 1988. Nevertheless, he decided to join the Czech Philharmonic instead as the second oboe player and later also cor anglais player. He has performed with various chamber ensembles, including hundreds of concerts with Musica Gaudeans Quartet, the band Camael, which is somewhere between folk, country and jazz, collaborating with violinist and composer Pavel Fischer and the Prague Baroque Soloists alongside his Czech Philharmonic colleagues. As a soloist, he has played with the Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra and Talich Chamber Orchestra. He has appeared as the guest principal oboist in the Czech National Symphony Orchestra and the South Czech Philharmonic. He has never forgotten folk music. Since 1982, he has been regularly playing with Chorea Bohemica ensemble where he met excellent composer, singer and musician Jaroslav Krček. He often plays and sings Czech, Moravian and Slovak folk songs with his brother Zdeněk.
He has recently been enjoying work with the Cimbalom Ensemble of the Czech Philharmonic the most. The group is specific for a number of reasons, mainly because they have oboe (alternating with cor anglais or recorders) instead of clarinet. They are also not limited to folk songs but perform Baroque music (only exchange the soft cimbalom sticks for hard ones and the sound is undistinguishable from a harpsichord), focusing on pieces inspired by folk music. Many famous composers based their work on folk music and the ensemble just decided to go the other way, playing Johannes Brahms, Béla Bartók, Zoltán Kodály, Franz Liszt, Bedřich Smetana and Leoš Janáček.
He studied with Professor Jiří Formáček at the Prague Conservatory and with professors Jiří Seidl and František Heman at the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague. Before graduating, he had already won many competitions and was the laureate of the International Competition Prague Spring and the Prize of the Pro Harmonia Mundi Foundation (1996).
In 1995, he was one of the founding members of the Afflatus Quintet, which won the 1st prize at the prestigious ARD Music Competition in Munich in 1997. He has performed with the ensemble on many stages in Europe and in Japan and has recorded eight CDs, mainly for the Japanese label Octavia Records, for which he also records as a soloist (CD “Combination” in 2006 and recording of J. S. Bach’s Suites BWV 1007-9 in 2013). He performed in the Czech Nonet between 1989 and 1993.
He is the principal bassoonist of the Czech Philharmonic and has been teaching at the Prague Conservatory since 2002. Together with his colleagues, he founded the Summer Bassoon Academy in Rataje nad Sázavou (Czech Republic). In 2016, he co-founded the Czech Double-Reed Society. He gets invitations to teach abroad, such as the Royal Academy in London, Hochschule für Musik in Vienna and Theater und Medien in Hannover (Germany).
Jaroslav Kubita was born in Olomouc into a family of musicians. At age ten he started learning bassoon from Václav Konečný and subsequently studied at the Prague Conservatory, at the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague, and also took masterclasses in Salzburg and Lugano. From the age of 18 he was the principal bassoonist of the orchestra of the Smetana Theatre in Prague; he acted in the same capacity at the Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra. He has been a member of the Czech Philharmonic since 1996 and its principal bassoonist since 2003.
With a wind trio led by his father, Jaroslav – aged only 12 at the time – received an honourable mention at the international competition Concertino Praga (1978). He is the winner of the Prague Spring bassoon competition (1991), the Kurpinski competition in Leszno, Poland (1988) and received prizes at the Carl Maria von Weber competition in Munich (1987) and IDRS in Manchester (1989).
Jaroslav has recorded classic Czech bassoon concertos on CD and many solo and chamber works for the Czech Radio. He appears as soloist and chamber player both at home and abroad, especially in Europe and Japan. He is a member of the ensembles In modo camerale (finalist of the Osaka international competition in Japan), Prague Baroque Ensemble (which made the first complete Czech CD recording of Jan Dismas Zelenka’s trio sonatas) and Czech Wind Harmony. He has recorded several CDs with these ensembles for the labels Exton, Panton and Studio Matouš. In 2008 he gave the world premiere of Gilles Silvestrini’s Bassoon Concerto in Prague and since 2009 has been teaching bassoon at the Janáček Academy of Music and Performing arts in Brno.
He studied at the Brno Conservatory with Professor Jiří Nykodým and the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague with professors Jiří Seidl and František Herman.
He won in a number of interpretation competitions (Kroměříž 1994, Chomutov 1995, Olomouc 2000) and received the laureate award at the Prague Spring International Competition 2002. With the bassoon quartet Fagotti Brunenses he took the 2nd prize at the International Bassoon Quartet Competition Potsdam (Germany) in 1995.
He became the solo bassoonist of the Brno Philharmonic Orchestra in 1993 and of the newly established PKF – Prague Philharmonia in 1994. He played the Czech premiers of bassoon concertos by French composers André Jolivet (1999) and Jean Françaix (2000) and Czech composer Martin Hybler (2008). As a soloist, he has performed with top Czech orchestras, including the Czech Philharmonic, PKF – Prague Philharmonia, Brno Philharmonic Orchestra, Pardubice Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra, Plzeň Philharmonic Orchestra and others.
He taught at the Janáček Academy of Music and Performing Arts in Brno in 2003–2007, at the summer music academy Prag – Wien – Budapest in Semmering (Austria) in 2003–2013 and has been teaching at the Prague Conservatory since 2007.
He founded the International Music Festival Haná. He regularly takes part in recording projects with French bassoonist and conductor Pascal Gallois. As a performer, he focuses on 20th century and contemporary music.
In 2013, he co-founded the Czech Double Reed Society with his Czech Philharmonic colleagues and the Summer Bassoon Academy in Rataje nad Sázavou (Czech Republic). He takes part in the project of the Czech Double Reed Symposium and series of educational concerts for primary and music schools aimed at promoting the bassoon. He collaborates with the National Institute for Further Education and organises courses for music school teachers.
He arranges music for double reed ensemble (made of oboes and bassoons) and various chamber ensembles. He also composes educational pieces for bassoon and other instruments.
He likes all music genres, in accordance with the famous words that “When music is done with truth, passion and love, it is always good”. From among the many composers he likes, Czech authors Antonín Dvořák, Leoš Janáček and Bohuslav Martinů stand out.
The chamber choir EN ARCHÉ was founded by Vojtěch Jouza in 1995. It is comprised of amateur singers who are brought together by their enthusiasm for beautiful music from various stylistic periods. The choir focuses mainly on sacred music, and in its concerts performs alongside chamber ensembles (especially the Prague Baroque Ensemble) and orchestras (the Czech Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra Pardubice, the North Bohemian Philharmonic Orchestra Teplice, the Hradec Králové Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Pilsen Philharmonic Orchestra).
In its repertoire, EN ARCHÉ focuses on music by baroque composers, complemented by works from the pre-Baroque period and the twentieth century (Benjamin Britten, Igor Stravinsky, Arvo Pärt, Leonard Bernstein). EN ARCHÉ has won a number of prizes in international competitions and frequently appears in concerts both in the Czech Republic and abroad (Germany, Switzerland, Norway, Belgium). In 2000 the choir recorded its first CD, František Xaver Thuri’s Stabat Mater and Requiem, featuring the Czech Madrigalists and the Prague Baroque Ensemble. It has appeared alongside the latter ensemble on another CD with the works of Johann Sebastian Bach and Antonio Vivaldi.
Vojtěch Jouza studied oboe at the Prague Conservatory in the class of František Xaver Thuri and subsequently at the Academy of Performing Arts in the class of Jiří Mihule. Later he also graduated from the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague in conducting, which he studied with Tomáš Koutník, František Vajnar, Petr Vronský, Hynek Farkač, Josef Kuchaň, Leoš Svárovský, Charles Olivier-Munroe, Norbert Baxa, Jiří Chvála and Lubomír Mátl. Vojtěch Jouza gained valuable experience early in his youth, for example, as a member of Gustav Mahler Jugendorchester led by Claudio Abbado. While still a student at the Academy, he won a competition to become an English horn soloist of the Prague Symphony Orchestra (1989–1991).
When still at the Prague Conservatory, his interest in early music and chamber performance inspired Vojtěch Jouza to found the Prague Baroque Ensemble in 1982, which has been actively performing ever since and where he takes on the roles of oboist, artistic director and occasionally conductor, presenting many interesting projects. In 2007 he conducted his own reconstruction of Johann Sebastian Bach’s St. Mark Passion with the Baroque Prague Ensemble and the Prague Chamber Choir as part of the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra concert series. In the following years, Vojtěch Jouza featured well- and lesser-known works within the concert series of the Prague Symphony Orchestra and the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra such as Johann Sebastian Bach’s Christmas Oratorio, Easter Oratorio and Magnificat; Missa Dei Patris by Jan Dismas Zelenka and Brockes Passion by Georg Philipp Telemann. In addition to numerous performances in the Czech Republic, the Prague Baroque Ensemble annually tours Japan.
As part of his other artistic activities, Vojtěch Jouza devotes himself to conducting choirs – in 1995 he founded the En Arché chamber choir where he is the choirmaster and conductor. In 2009, he became the choirmaster of the Česká píseň (Czech Song) Choir in Pilsen. In 2014, he was invited to teach at the Convivium International Summer School of Sacred Music as a choirmaster lecturer.
As a conductor, Vojtěch Jouza has collaborated with leading Czech and Slovak orchestras and choirs such as the Czech Philharmonic, PKF – Prague Philharmonia, Slovak State Philharmonic in Košice, Prague Chamber Choir, Kühn Choir of Prague, Martinů Voices, Talich’s Chamber Orchestra, Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra of South Bohemia, Pardubice Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra, Pilsen Philharmonic Orchestra and Bohuslav Martinů Philharmonic Orchestra in Zlín. Together with the BERG Orchestra, Vojtěch Jouza staged two operas by Bohuslav Martinů, Comedy on the Bridge and The Marriage. As a co-creator and especially conductor he has been involved in the past seasons in successful educational programs of the Czech Philharmonic entitled “Penguins in the Rudolfinum”. In the years 2015–2017 he was Assistant to Chief Conductor of the Czech Philharmonic, Jiří Bělohlávek. In the 2016/2017 season he was involved in preparation of the recording of Tchaikovsky’s compositions for Decca with Semyon Bychkov.