2011 International Voice Summer Program and Festival Salzburg, Young Artists Program, Master class, Opera, Art Song, Oratorio, Belcanto, Singers, 2011 Gesangskurs, Salzburg, Meisterkurse für Gesang, Master classes de Canto, L'atelier du chant, corsi de canto lirico, Competition, Awards, Legendary Singers, Belcanto Era, Golden Age of Singing, young dramatic
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Photo Credit: Jonno Rattman

S V F  S I N G E R S '  R E V I E W S

Due to the demanding curriculum and pursue of artistic excellence, SVF has been since 2011 a very intensive and challenging encounter for all participants, yet for many a rewarding and memorable experience. Here are some reviews and thank you letters from former participants in regards to the Salzburg Voice Festival's environment, curriculum, concerts and faculty members
"I think the most remarkable thing is the level of talent of Teresa and Jonathan. I think I have learned more in the last two weeks than I have learned in the last two years, so that was extremely encouraging! To be able to not only get a good education but to get incredible interpretation with the music that they chose. It was extremely challenging, the types of music that they chose I would have never chosen for myself. But they really challenged you in your technique and really encouraged you to take it to the next level. So I think the setting of Salzburg is so inspiring, just knowing that you were going to be here, I think it was..it lit a fire under me! So, two thumbs up!" Maria [USA]

"I think the concerts are the best part. You kind of realize that music is really universal. Maybe not theoretically universal but, you know, performance wise. And I think that was the whole aim of the program, to get us performing. So if you are going to apply, you know, make sure you have...you are diligent and you are willing to work with others and you are accepting Therese's and Jonathan's opinons and who ever else's. And nice to your peers!" Stephanie [South Corea]

"Of course it is a great experience for me to learn from Therese and Jonathan. They teach me, they taught me a lot of different things I have never learned before, such as the interpretation, which opened my eyes a lot, I think. I think if you really want to come to this kind of a program, you really need to be prepared. Not only your music but mentally, because you need to know that you are here to learn. Not to visit the city, of course that is part of the fun thing. But if you really want to do it, you have to really be prepared and be open-minded enough to receive new ideas. We are from all over the world, different parts of the world, we have different ideas about art, about music." Wee Kiat [Malaysia]

"Dear all, I would like to thank you for providing a great opportunity to be a paticipant of SVF 2014. From the very beginning, from the moment of application to the Festival, its administration showed attentiveness and loyalty to me, in particular by considering my financial situation and providing me with discount. During the Masterclass I highly appreciated the intense programm - we had everyday classes and once in two days - concerts at various stages in Vienna and Salzburg. Separately, I want to thank Jonathan Floril for organization of these concerts and accompanying every artist at each of them. Also, I want to thank coaches of the Masterclass for their professionalism and dedication in everyday work with us, especially Lucija Dedic and Jonathan Floril. Of course, I thank the SVF for an amazing opportunity to work and joint performance with Mahler Philharmonic Orchestra during the Leo Slezak Competition in Schönbrunn Palace. The experience gained at SVF 2014 helped me to grow professionally and I will gladly work with these people again, if I have such opportunity in future." Anastassiya [Kasakhstan]

"First of all, it must be a person who loves his work, who loves singing and can spend all his life on this, because this is a very intensive program and needs a lot of work." Bagdasar [Russia]

"I think one of the best aspects of the program was, that I got to meet people from all over the world who really inspired me by their artistry. And I got to discover many new things about the aesthetics of the Golden Age of singing during the 1920's. And I got to practice my german skills and learn a new language. And the experience of being in a different country and meeting new people was very different." Veronika [Canada]

"It is very interesting to sing here. In fact, one comes here to show one's best, but here we experience such level of perfection that we acquire the capacity to create and enjoy. Enjoy singing! Enjoy what we do! Enjoy creating sounds! Enjoy transmitting the emotions that an aria or a song require. At the concerts, I had an overwhelming experience to show all of these, after 15 days of excellent work. In fact, it was evident and all participants felt it. I think that the utmost benefit of this program is to be guided by an experienced faculty. It is really good to be with qualified professionals because at the end, one ends up singing with a much more polished and a much more felt singing. This is the best reward of having come here. I encourage everybody who would like to apply to attend the Salzburg Voice Festival to do so, since they will discover a new insight on what singing really means. Mostly because of the study on the legacy and aesthetics of the Golden Era. This is certainly what makes the difference! This is what really helps completely understand what the work of a singer and of an artist is about." Javier [Ecuador]

"I am more acquainted with the things I really need to work on. I think I really have an idea now of how specifically I need to work and I wasn't really aware of that as much. The meticulous way that they research and they present and they try to come through with this kind of art I really like and also the other singers have learned out a lot from. I have had a great time with the people." Cloe [USA]

"For me the most positive thing I learned here or I get to know a lot of people from all over the world. People that come from so many different places, with so many different voices and I learned a lot just listening to them. And well, I mean, the surrounding of Salzburg gives me a lot of inspiration." Sabrina [Switzerland]

"Dear Jonathan, thank you for your guidance!! Wee Kiat" [Malaysia]

"Dear Thérèse: Thank you so much for your guidance. Wish that I'll have a chance to work with You + Jonathan one day, again!!! Thanks, again!! Wee Kiat"

"Con gran afecto y gratitud de un amigo que los aprecia. Siguen Adelante! Javier" [Ecuador]

"Estimada Thérèse, No se como decir tantas cosas buenas de ustedes pero quiero resumir en eso GRACIAS se lo quiere un montón. Javier" [Ecuador] 

"Dear Therese, Thank you for the wonderful two weeks. It has been an invaluable experience! Veronika" [Canada]

"Liebe Thérèse, I wanted to thank you sincerely for inviting me to sing in the program this year. I've loved learning about a new wonderful world of music... and in one of the greatest places ever, WIEN! Your insights have helped me see new things, and have new musical ideas. I'm very excited to continue learning more about Mahler, Wagner, and Bel Canto. I wish to collaborate again sometime soon hopefully! Please keep in touch! Hochachtungsvoll, Danielle" [USA]

"Dear Thérèse, you are truly an inspiration and it has been an honor to learn from you these past weeks! Thank you for the amazing opportunity and I really look forward to working with you in the future! With love, Stephanie" [Canada]

"We knew it was going to be a very intense, a very very difficult period. We also knew because through all the communication we got, which I found, I did find excellent, we knew there were very high expectations, very stressful obviously, but that's part of what we do. As far as personally, I have no quams, I have been singing every single day since I came and you know that's fruitful. Very excellent recordings, the recording quality and everything is fantastic, you know having this opportunity. I think I have gained an awful lot of things, started exploring a lot of repertoire which I figured would probably suit me and it actually did. I also gained an enormous amount of... more confidence in myself because I see that I was capable even though in tiredness. It's a nice feeling of having... a self-achievment. So I would come back, I like it!" Stephen [Wales]

"This is actually my second year being here in Salzburg. It is still very wonderful. I am glad to be back. Wee-Kiat" [Malaysia]

"Very good points at this festival was to learn all this repertoire because I actually never learned before so much music. The level was very good for me because it took from me, it was not easy but it wasn't too much. So it was on a really good level. It was just really great for me to work so much on my voice and have lessons every day and work every day. This was really great for me. I think it helped me very much to become more outgoing with my voice and to believe I could do more with my voice just do almost everything." Sarah [Switzerland]
  "I came to the Salzburg Voice Festival to experience my potential, strength and mostly for professional matters. This is my first time in Salzburg and I really liked the experience at this festival. This festival is extremely hard since I had to learn a lot of things in little time and sometimes not all can bear with it since it is very difficult. I was delighted to meet my colleagues and to enjoy the experience with them and with the professors. To work on repertoire that I had never sung was wonderful. I am the only person that speaks neither English nor German but I had a great time, although it was more difficult for me. For future participants, it is very interesting, but very difficult. You need to be prepared for the festival beforehand. Apart from aiming to win, you need to prepare yourself physically and most importantly, mentally. Throughout the festival I acquired a lot of knowledge and now I am starting my work at the Royal Theater of Madrid. Besides offering a great curriculum, for me this festival was a great experience. I learned a lot of things such as the Italian way of singing. Hence, I was very pleased to further some styles of singing and vocalization. Thank you very much! I was delighted to attend, participate and enjoy the experience with my colleagues and professors. I do not want to say goodbye, I say: See you soon!" Natalia [Russia]

"Ich denke, dass man da wirklich eine besondere Erfahrung machen kann, wenn man sich für diese Erfahrung öffnet, dass man zum Beispiel auch Ratschläge oder das, was man eben von Thérèse und Jonathan lernt wirklich...also, dass man sich wirklich überlegt, was es für einen bereit hält. Also, dass man nicht sagt, nein, ich kenn das nicht, das ist mir fremd, ich will das nicht, aber, dass man sich dafür öffnet. Ich denke, das ist sehr wichtig. Natürlich habe ich sehr viel im Singen dazugelernt. In der Technik zum Beispiel, mit Obertönen zu arbeiten. Also Thérèse hat die Fähigkeit einem das zu übermitteln, dass man auch wirklich weiss, wie man es machen soll. Vor allem weil sie es einem auch vorzeigt. Man bekommt eine Idee von der Technik, und vor allem eine Idee, wie man sie selbst anwenden soll. Das finde ich sehr gut. Und mit dem werde ich weiterhin weiterarbeiten. Und vor allem, was ich bei den beiden bewundere, ist ihre Leidenschaft für die Musik und vor allem das genaue hinhören. Ich bin eher so ein Mensch, der, ja, ich hör es einmal und dann sing ich es. Aber zum Beispiel Jonathan zeigt einem, dass man genau hinhören soll, auf den Rhythmus, auf das, was die Musik aussagen möchte und was der Komponist sagen möchte, was der Text sagt, dass man sich wirklich als Musiker da hineinversetzt. Dass man nicht nur einfach etwas runtersingt, aber die Musik lebt und lebendig macht. Ich muss ganz ehrlich sagen, ich hab vorher nicht sehr viel gewusst vom Golden Age und den Sängern. Aber erst durch die zwei Wochen, jetzt bemerke ich wirklich, dass das großartige Künstler sind, und, dass wir in der heutigen Zeit etwas von ihnen lernen können. Ja, ich erwisch mich schon oft dabei, dass ich mir die Musik anhöre und dann überleg, ja, wie hat Elisabeth Schwarzkopf zum Beispiel das gemacht, welche Intensität hatte sie, vor allem in ihrer Aussprache und - ist schon ein sehr interessantes Gebiet. Also da werd ich mir noch mehr anhören und noch mehr in diese Richtung gehen. Also ich find es richtig toll, dass sich die zwei auf das spezialisieren, weil ich auch denk, dass es einen Künstler ausmacht, sich auf ein Gebiet zu spezialisieren und da drinnen eben seine Besonderheiten zu entdecken." Lisa [Austria]

Well, I am so happy to be here, to be the first prize winner of the Leo Slezak International Competition in its first edition. I have to say, for me it has been a nice, very nice experience in all sense. I have learned so much, I have had friendships with so many singers, very talented, very high level vocal from all over the world. And for me also has to be the first approach to German music because of the rules of the competition, what we had to sing, two German songs. In fact, it was the first time of my life that I sing Mahler songs and I have to say, from now on I love Mahler. I love Mahler and also this kind of mentality of the Jury because probably Leo Slezak Competition is the only contest, international contest in the world, that has the critieria of Bel Canto from the first part of the 20th century, which is very good. Also, prior to the contest, we had the opportunity to attend the two weeks course. In this course we have had the opportunity to go deep inside, to get more insights of the German diction, German style and German repertoire. It this course we have had the opportunity also to perform, each of the singers, everyone performed a recital in a very beautiful place – Barocksaal Doblinger. It has been a very creative and nice experience singing close together with the other fellows, which has a very high level of singing. They are very good artists. Regarding of the prize of the competition, I have to say that I was very surprised because I did not expect to get it, sincerely, the first prize. Because of the high level of my friends, the other singers, the other competitors, which, they come from all over the world. From Australia, from South Korea, from Italy, from the United States, from Canada. And I was really surprised, it was a very high honor for me that I got finally the first prize. Finally I have to say I am really lucky, I have to thank from the deep of my heart – this beautiful teacher, Therese Mahler, she is a very very talented musician, she is a great artist and a very good teacher because she speaks also perfectly German, French, Spanish, so many languages, which is very very necessary to teach in a proper way." Aurelio [Spain]

"Dear Jonathan, I am really grateful to have you as a teacher. You are an incredible Pianist. Thank you so much for everything and especially your patience!!" Lisa  [Austria]

"Liebe Thérèse, ich danke dir recht herzlich für alles, was du für mich getan hast. Deine Gesangsstunden waren wirklich die besten, die ich je hatte und vorallem hast du mir dabei geholfen, wieder meine Liebe zur Musik zu entdecken. Dafür und für deine wunderbare Persönlichkeit bin ich dir sehr dankbar. Alles Liebe, Lisa" [Austria]

"Dear Jonathan, Thank you very much for the incredible time I'll never forget." Sabrina [Switzerland]

Liebe Thérèse, Vielen Dank für die gemeinsame Zeit! Ich habe viel gelernt und bin glücklich! Alles Gute, Sabrina" [Switzerland]

"Your talent and kindness overwhelm me! Thank you for this lifetime opportunity and my pleasure to work and play and learn alongside the most passionate persons in the world! Maria" [USA]

"Dear Jonathan, How can I thank you! These two weeks are a singers dream and you and Thérèse the most beautiful stars that bless us with your gifts! I will never forget this time! Vaya con Dios, Maria" [USA]

"Thérèse, Thank you for making my dreams come true! Salzburg is the most magical place in the world! And your love and spirit and talent surpass all my expectations. God bless you, Maria" [USA]

"Dear Jonathan, I am so greatful that I was able to work with you again in such a wonderful setting! Thank you so much for believing in me and all the guidance you've given me over the years. All my best, Cloe" [USA]

"Dear Thérèse, I am so grateful for your guidance, wisdom and inspiration. It has been a truly wonderful 2 weeks and I am so happy to have had the opportunity! All my best, Cloe" [USA]

"Dear Jonathan, I would like to thank you for your positive attitude throughout all those coachings. You have been such a great support and I would not have made it through without your kindness. Your brilliance amazes me and I wish both you and Thérèse happiness. With sincerest regards, Stephanie" [Canada]

"Well, it was a feast! It is wonderful to hear all these young voices and to see these people, many of them through so much into it. They are very good actors as well as singers. And I have full admiration for Jonathan who does all the accompaniments, I mean, had to learn so many different pieces and very different styles and I think all together it made a wonderful entertaining evening." Edward [Public Guest]

"Not only representing my country but also Latin America. I believe that the fact of living new experiences makes one not only a better professional but also a better human being. The fact of having done a lot of things to be able to be here has been indeed an enriching experience. In general, I believe that the fellowship with the other festival's singers has been an essential aspect since they are already professionals and help one to go one and not to get stuck." Diego [Ecuador]
More reviews from other SVF participants will be published soon!