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Jury 2019

The this year's jury is composed of five experts from different countries.


Jurors

Georg Grün • Saarbrücken, Germany (Chairman)

Georg Grün is counted as one of the most sought after choral conductors and specialists in choral sound throughout the world.  In 1990 he founded the Saarbrücken Chamber Choir and has been its artistic director from this time. With this ensemble he won the most important international and national choir competitions, performed concerts at numerous famous music festivals at home and abroad and regularly produced recordings and CDs.

From 2000 to 2013, Georg Grün was Professor for Choral Conducting at the Mannheim University for Music with whose chamber choir he also won many prizes. From 2012 he changed to become professor at the Saar University for Music, at the same time taking over the direction of the Saarbrücken Bach Choir. Since 2008 he has also sung baritone as a member of the Daarler Vocal Consort.

Georg Grün travels throughout the world as guest conductor, guest professor, jury member and lecturer at international master classes for choral conducting. Since 2010 he has been advisor for the conducting forum of the German Music Council. He is increasingly active in the areas of improvisation (piano/organ) and performance and also concerns himself with composing and arranging.

Dr. Elena Sharkova • Los Altos, USA

Having grown up in St. Petersburg, Elena Sharkova studied music education, piano and conducting at the Rimski-Korsakov Conservatoire in her home city, where she also taught. In 1993 she moved to the USA, where she first of all taught at the Western Michigan University and then later at the San José State University. Convinced that singing together is the best way to bring people together, especially at a young age, she took over the artistic direction of the Cantabile Youth Singers in Los Altos (CA) in 2004. Here, children and youngsters are introduced to singing and trained in various stages from the age of four.

Elena Sharkova is one of the most active choral conductors in the USA - as a lecturer in workshops and master classes, as a conductor at concerts with her own choirs and as guest conductor of other ensembles.

Vytautas Miškinis • Vilnius, Lithuania

Vytautas Miškinis, Professor for Choral Conducting at the Lithuanian Music and Theatre Academy in Vilnius and President of the Lithuanian Choral Union began his musical career at the age of seven as a singer with the Ažuoliukas Boys’ Choir. Vytautas Miškinis has remained faithful to his choral roots until the present time - since 1979 he has been the artistic director of Ažuoliukas (in English „little oak“), which counts today as one of the most important music schools in Lithuania.

With his choirs, he has won numerous prizes at international competitions. As a jury member and lecturer he is much in demand internationally. Many choir enthusiasts will know him as a composer whose works have been published in several countries.

Vytautas Miškinis has accompanied the International Chamber Choir Competition Marktoberdorf from the very beginning and he is known from various sides: as a choral conductor on the stage and as a jury member in front of it.

Zoltán Pad • Debrecen, Hungary

Zoltán Pad ranks among the young generation of internationally recognized conductors. He studied choir conductiong with Prof. Péter Erdei at the Liszt Ferenc Academy Budapest followed by an academic year with Michael Gläser in Munich as well as several Master Classes. As chorus master he has worked with outstanding conductors and ensembles such as Sir Simon Rattle and the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Péter Eötvös and the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, Helmuth Rilling and Daniel Harding. Besides  being chief conductor of the Hungarian Radio Choir he is regularly invited to conduct oratorical works with large orchestras and renowned ensembles, such as SWR Vokalensemble, MDR Radio Choir, Chœur Radio France, ChorWerk Ruhr, Croatian Radio Choir . In 2017 Zoltán Pad was conductor of the World Youth Choir.

Stephen Leek • Chapel Hill, Australia

Born in Sydney, the composer and choral conductor Stephen Leek is active throughout the world and counts as one of the most important personalities in the music scene of the Australian continent. He studied cello and composition at the Canberry School of Music. Stephen Leek founded and directed ensembles such as the vOiCeArT and the Australian Voices, with which he travelled internationally. In addition to his concert activities as a singer and conductor, he has represented his home country at many international organisations such as the Asia Pacific Choral Council and the International Federation for Choral Music of which he was the Vice President in 2017.

His compositional activities have found their expression in 13 operas, numerous orchestral and chamber music works as well as more than 700 choral works, many of them commissioned pieces. He has won several awards for his work, including the Robert Edler Prize for Choral Music.