About us

BASEL SINFONIETTA
MUSIC IN TUNE WITH THE TIMES

THE ORCHESTRA

The Basel Sinfonietta is a full symphonic orchestra specializing in contemporary music – making it a unique orchestra in the classical music scene. The Principal Conductor of the Basel Sinfonietta is Titus Engel.

Driven by its commitment to performing music in tune with the times the Basel Sinfonietta has been transcending classical concert conventions since its founding in 1980 and embraces an exploratory approach to other genres and cultures in its programming.

The Basel Sinfonietta works with the leading composers of the present day. The orchestra has commissioned numerous works and has presented more than 220 world premieres and national premieres since its foundation.

A highlight of the Basel Sinfonietta's 2024/25 season will be the world premiere of Moritz Eggert's "Die Tiefe des Raumes - ein Fussballoratorium für Basel" in cooperation with Theater Basel. In this season, the only Swiss orchestra for contemporary music will realize many other Swiss premieres and world premieres with works by Yurii Pikush, Sergei Nevsky, Aleksandra Słyż, Stefan Keller, Unsuk Chin, Sofia Gubaidulina, Lera Auerbach, Helga Arias, Liza Lim, Missy Mazzoli, Alex Paxton, Julius Eastman, Jessie Cox, Derrick Skye and Thierry Pécou. In addition, the Basel Sinfonietta is once again collaborating with the Kaserne Basel this season.

The Basel Sinfonietta is a self-governing orchestra. As the orchestra is organized as an association, all musicians can participate in the democratic decision-making process on the orientation and programming of the ensemble.

The Basel Sinfonietta is financially supported by the canton of Basel-Stadt, among others.

Titus Engel

PRINCIPAL CONDUCTOR

Titus Engel

Principal Conductor

In 2020 Titus Engel was named Conductor of the Year by Opernwelt magazine. With his comprehensive view of repertoire from a wide range of musical eras, he consistently grasps works in their diverse interrelationships. The Berlin-based Zurich native recently thrilled audiences with a historically informed Brahms' cycle as well as with Lohengrin at the Tiroler Festspiele Erl and with a monumental production of Messiaen‘s Saint François d'Assise at Stuttgart Opera.

Starting in the 2023/24 season, Titus Engel will take over as Principal Conductor of the Basel Sinfonietta, in his inaugural concert he will lead the Basel Sinfonietta together with the NDR Big Band and the Chorwerk Ruhr at the Ruhrtriennale Festival in September 2023. To open the season, he conducts Tobias Kratzer's new production of Henze's The Raft of the Medusa at the Komische Oper Berlin. He then appears at Theater Basel for the revival of Weber's Der Freischütz (Christoph Marthaler) and at the Grand Théâtre de Genève with Hèctor Parra's new opera Justice.

Guest conducting engagements so far have included the Konzerthausorchester Berlin, Philharmonia Orchestra, SWR and WDR Sinfonieorchester, Mahler Chamber Orchestra, Camerata Salzburg as well as Ensemble Modern and Klangforum Wien. He regularly conducts at opera houses in Frankfurt, Stuttgart, Hamburg, Berlin, Munich, Lyon, Basel, and Geneva, and has led performances of Berg's Wozzeck, Bartók's Blue Beard's Castle, Strauss's Salome, and Haas's Bluthaus, among others. In 2016 together with Lydia Steier he brought the Swiss premiere of Stockhausen's Donnerstag to the stage at Theater Basel – Opernwelt magazine named the production “Performance of the Year”. The premiere of Chaya Czernowin's opera Infinite Now took place in 2017, which he conducted at the Opera Vlaanderen, the Nationaltheater Mannheim, and the Philharmonie de Paris. He has also led numerous world premieres at the Salzburg Festival, Berliner Festspiele, Lucerne Festival, the Ruhrtriennale, and the Wiener Konzerthaus.

After studying musicology and philosophy in Zurich and Berlin Titus Engel studied conducting in Dresden with Christian Kluttig. He has recorded numerous works for radio and CD and is the founder of the Akademie Musiktheater Heute, in addition to having edited several books on contemporary opera.

Laurent Zufferey

ASSISTANT CONDUCTOR

Laurent Zufferey

Assistant Conductor

The young Swiss conductor Laurent Zufferey is taking over the position of Assistant Conductor at the Basel Sinfonietta in the 2022/23 season.

Laurent Zufferey was born in 1993 in Sion in the canton of Valais (Switzerland). He studied at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester (UK), where he was assistant conductor of the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra and worked with renowned conductors such as Wassili Petrenko, Omer Meir Wellber and Joshua Weilerstein.

Laurent Zufferey has already worked with renowned orchestras such as the Orchestre Nationale de Metz, the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra, the Manchester Camerata, the Sofia Philharmonic, the Augsburg Philharmonic, the German Armed Forces Music Corps, the Moravian Philharmonic, the Sinfonietta de Lausanne, the Kammerphilharmonie Graubünden and the Argovia Philharmonic.

In May 2021, Laurent Zufferey won the audience prize at the Tonhalle Conducting Academy conducted by Paavo Järvi. In September 2021, he was appointed musical director of the Swiss ensemble Valéik. And in November 2021 he made his debut at the KKL Luzern with Loredana and the Red Bull Symphonic. In the 2022/23 season, he will also take up the position of Assistant Conductor with the Philharmonic Royal de Liège orchestra in Belgium.

Laurent Zufferey will support Principal Conductor Baldur Brönnimann in his rehearsals and help to shape concert projects of the Basel Sinfonietta with numerous world premieres and Swiss premieres.

Orchestra members

The Basel Sinfonietta consists of about 80 members, the majority of them specialists in contemporary music, who work on a per-project basis and are joined by external members as necessary.

Orchestra members

Daniela Müller

Violin / Concertmaster

Simone Zgraggen

Violin / Concertmaster

David Caflisch Sontòn

Violin / Section Leader

Mirka Scepanovic

Violin / Section Leader

Martina Albisetti

Violin

Cornelius Bauer

Violin

Ulrich Bürgi

Violin

Leonie Flaksman

Violin

Simone Flück

Violin

Delphine Granges

Violin

Renate Hofstetter

Violin

Iliana Hristova-Schierer

Violin

Franziska Németi-Mosimann

Violin

Sylvia Oelkrug

Violin

Claudine Ostermann

Violin

Alicja Pilarczyk

Violin

Virginie Raemy

Violin

Lisa Rieder

Violin

Stephanie Ruf

Violin

Mirjam Sahli

Violin

Sabine Schädelin

Violin

Sandra Schütz

Violin

Livia Schwartz

Violin

Katarzyna Seremak

Violin

Nadia Strijbos

Violin

Friedemann A. Treiber

Violin

Marzena Treiber-Toczko

Violin

Claudia Troxler

Violin

Marie Stockmarr Becker

Viola / Section Leader

Christina Anger

Viola

Sebastian Heimann

Viola

Elisabeth Kappus

Viola

Dominik Klauser

Viola

Tatiana Kunz

Viola

Anja Martin-Glatthard

Viola

Anouk Obschlager

Viola

Mariateresa Pagano

Viola

Elia Portabales Rodríguez

Viola

Carlos Vallés Garcia

Viola

Martina Brodbeck

Cello / Section Leader

Martin Jaggi

Cello / Section Leader

Ekachai Maskulrat

Cello / Section Leader

Friederike Arnold

Cello

Anna Karolina Egger

Cello

Ursula Kamber-Schaub

Cello

Josep-Oriol Miró Cogul

Cello

Aude Pivôt

Cello

Pierre Dekker

Double bass / Section Leader

Mariona Mateu Carles

Double bass / Section Leader

Benedict Ziervogel

Double bass / Section Leader

Claudia Brunner

Double bass

Lukas Burri

Double bass

Philippe Dreger

Double bass

Regula Bernath

Flute

Julian Cawdrey

Flute

Marita Kohler

Oboe

Hanna Langmeier Stenz

Clarinet

Guido Stier

Clarinet

Elise Jacoberger

Bassoon

Lucas Rössner

Bassoon

Heidwolf Arnold

Horn

Simon Kissling

Horn

Carl-Philipp Rombach

Horn

Udo Schmitz

Horn

Christian Schweizer

Horn

Jens Bracher

Trompete

Friederike Huy

Trumpet

Noe Nillni

Trumpet

Rudi Hermann

Trumpet

Anita Kuster

Trombone

Stephen Menotti

Trombone

Artur Smolyn

Trombone

Sophia Nidecker

Tuba

Estelle Costanzo

Harp

Julia Wacker

Harp

Ludovic Van Hellemont

Piano

Fran Lorkovic

Percussion

Kai Littkopf

Percussion

Matthias Würsch

Percussion

Thomas Waldner

Percussion

Premieres

Since its founding, the Basel Sinfonietta has collaborated with the leading composers of our time. The orchestra has commissioned numerous works and has been able to perform a large number of world premieres as well as national premieres since its foundation.

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On Tour

Since its foundation, the Basel Sinfonietta has set musical accents beyond the borders of Switzerland in Europe and as far afield as Asia, as numerous guest performances and invitations to renowned festivals attest.

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MANAGEMENT

The Basel Sinfonietta office is responsible for the management and strategic development of the orchestra, as well as the administration and organization of the multifaceted processes involved in concert projects. The office currently has a team of four employees, consisting of the management and one part-time position each for Orchestra Management, Subscription service/ticketing and fundraising assistance, Orchestra Operations and Library Services. Students have the opportunity to gain diverse practical experience in cultural management as part of an internship at the office.

The orchestra members periodically elect a board from among their own members. The orchestra board is the central representative and decision-making body of the Basel Sinfonietta Association. It is here that, in close collaboration with the management, in particular all strategic decisions are made, the members of the administrative office are appointed and all internal matters within the orchestra are discussed and decided upon.

Franziska Németi-Mosimann

Violin / President

Fran Lorkovic

Percussion

Udo Schmitz

Horn

On behalf of and at the request of the Orchestra Board, the Program Committee creates the programs of the Basel Sinfonietta's self-responsible concerts and thus structures their programmatic and artistic orientation. The commission consists of two elected orchestra members, the Principal Conductor and the management.

Cornelius Bauer

Violin / Program Coordinator

Friedemann A. Treiber

Violin

Titus Engel

Principal Conductor

Daniela Martin

Managing Director

The Staffing Committee is responsible for personnel matters within the orchestra, in particular the assignment of musicians, the admission of new members, the engagement of new members, quality issues as well as the artistic development of the orchestra.
The composition of the Staffing Committee is being renewed.

Photo: Marc Doradzillo

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