Eriks Ešenvalds is one of the most sought-after composers working today, with a busy commission schedule and performances of his music heard on every continent. After study at the Latvian Baptist Theological Seminary and the Latvian Academy of Music, he was a member of the State Choir Latvija. In 2011 he was awarded the two-year position of Fellow Commoner in Creative Arts at Trinity College, University of Cambridge. Ēriks has won multiple awards for his work and undertakes many international residencies working on his music and lecturing. Recent premieres include Visions of Arctic: Sea for Saxophone and Liepāja Symphony Orchestra, Lakes Awake at Dawn for the Boston Symphony and City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Dreams Under your Feet for the Gewandhaus Leipzig, A Shadow for the BBC Proms Youth Choir. His full-scale opera The Immured was premiered at the Latvian National Opera in 2016 to great acclaim. His compositions appear on Hyperion, Naxos, Ondine, Harmonia Mundi, on Decca Classics, and others.
Ivo Antognini teaches ear training and piano at the Conservatorio della Svizzera Italiana in Lugano (Switzerland). His choral works have won many awards in national and international choral composition events and have been performed in more than 55 countries.
A concert dedicated completely to his choral music took place in March 2016 at the Lincoln Center, for the performing art in New York and in the same year his first major, extended work A Prayer for Mother Earth, for mixed choir, children’s choir, orchestra, soprano soloist and piano, was premiered at the Carnegie Hall in New York.
Recent recordings with Antognini’s music include Canticum Novum, a portrait CD featuring the Salt Lake Vocal Artists, To Bethlehem (Resonus) with Kantorei of Kansas City, Invisible stars and Perpetual Twilight (Signum Records), with UCD Choral Scholars and Sacred Songs of Life & Love (Pentatone) with South Dakota Chorale. His choral pieces are published by Alliance Music Pub., Walton Music, Hal Leonard, G. Schirmer, Colla Voce, Boosey & Hawkes, PH Publishers, ECS Publishing, Carus-Verlag, Edition Peters Ferrimontana and others.
Graduated with honors in piano and in philosophy, he trained as a choir conductor at several academies with internationally renowned teachers. First prize at the R. Gandolfi International Competition for Choir Conductors, he has also won many prizes in national and international choral competitions conducting choirs such as the Ensemble Vocale Mousiké and the Torino Vocalensemble. He collaborates as choirmaster with the professional Ensemble Verdi Barocca and the Symphonic Choir of Milan and has collaborated as choirmaster with Ars Cantica Choir on the occasion of important festivals and musical seasons. He studied singing with internationally renowned teachers and collaborates as a singer with several professional groups including LaBarocca, Il Canto di Orfeo and Ars Cantica Choir. He is invited as a guest conductor for seminars and concerts, also in collaboration with orchestras, and as a juror in national and international choral competitions. He carries out an intense activity as a piano and choir conducting teacher at different academies and regularly holds courses and seminars for singers and conductors.
With a diploma in clarinet, she specialised in choral conducting with M. Berrini, L. Donati, T. Visioli, G. Abbà, N. Conci, M. Lanaro, S. Korn and M. Mora. In 2007 she obtained the specialisation certificate as choir conductor, European level 3. Since 1992 she has been teaching choir practice at the "Istituto musicale pareggiato della Valle d'Aosta". She carries out an intense activity in the choral field as an expert in didactics and children's vocality. She is the creator and curator of the MusiCantando project that she has been carrying out for many years in the elementary school of the region. Since 2007 she has been conducting the Canto Leggero choir of the M.I. Viglino Foundation for Musical Culture, formed by about forty boys and girls with whom she performs many concerts and boasts collaborations with prestigious artists (Ray Lema, Elisa, Bil Aka Kora). In May 2017, the choir won first prize and a special prize at the F. Gaffurio National Choral Competition in Quartiano in the youth choir section.