Ma'alot Quintet - Biography

Ma'alot Quintet

Ma'alot Quintett © Irène Zandel

Ma'alot Quintet

Stephanie Winker - flute (Gewandhaus Leipzig)

Christian Wetzel - oboe (Hochschule Köln)

Ulf-Guido Schäfer - clarinet (NDR Hannover)

Sibylle Mahni - horn (Museumsorchester Frankfurt)

Volker Tessmann - bassoon (Hochschule Hanns Eisler Berlin)

FFounded in 1986, the Ma’alot Quintett soon achieved wide international recognition, winning four first prizes in major international chamber-music competitions, foremost among them First Prize in the 1989 ARD International Music Competition in Munich. Numerous invitations to international music festivals followed, and a lively concert activity has taken them throughout Germany as well as abroad.

The ensemble’s CD releases have been eagerly awaited and enthusiastically received. The Ma’alot Quintet’s repertoire embraces compositions for wind quintet from the Viennese Classics to the present day, as well as arrangements specially prepared by Ulf-Guido Schäfer, and now all available on CD. They place particular emphasis on championing new music, introducing audiences to new sounds and ideas and thereby expanding the chamber-music repertoire.

All members of the Quintet hold leading positions in major German orchestras teach at music conservatories and make regular solo appearances. The CD with works by Dvo­rak was the beginning of a long - term collaboration between the Ma'alot Quintet and Dabringhaus & Grimm. This Disc was awarded the famous German "Echo" Prize as well as the recently released CD with Rossini’s “La Cenerentola” and “Tancredi” in arrangements by Ulf-Guido Schäfer. A new recording of Mendelssohn’s Midsummernight’d Dream has been released in 2012 (MDG).

In 2011, celebrating it’s 25th anniversay, the Ma’alot Quintett has founded the Harmoy Music Festival in Rheda. From 2014 on the festival will take place at the Rittergut Störmede (Westfalen).

The name Ma’alot comes from the Hebrew and symbolizes the path to harmony and musical concord.