Karel Valter

Karel Valter (b. 1980 in Prague) studied flute and conducting at the Prague Conservatory, transverse flute at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis, and conducting at the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts. He regularly appears as a solo flautist with the ensemble Café Zimmermann and with La Cetra Baroque Orchestra. His performances have been recorded for broadcast by many European radio networks. He has recorded albums for Alpha, Tudor, Deutsche Grammophon and Ars Produktion. Karel Valter runs a recording studio specializing in early music in Waldenburg, Switzerland. He also works as a producer for various orchestras, ensembles and music labels. Since 2017, Karel has been the artistic director of Musiktage Valendas in the Canton of Grisons.

Karel Valter and his chamber musician partners

Hadrien Jourdan (b. 1973) set his sights on becoming an organist at an early age and soon obtained his diploma in Geneva, his home town. Musical encounters he had there subsequently took him to Italy and France, where he regularly studied historical organs and harpsichords. He attracted the attention of Swiss organist Guy Bovet, and furthered his education at the Basel Music Academy. He has been a prize-winner at several international competitions (Bruges, Swiss Organ Competition, Council of Europe Juventus). His passion for the other "Artes Liberales" — astronomy, chemistry, architecture, Chinese calligraphy — has not prevented him from experimenting with the "Artes mechanicae": he has designed and manufactured many diverse tools, and has invented ingenious mechanical systems for making instruments. Furthermore, he has immersed himself in jazz, improvisation and traditional music. Hadrien participates in prestigious festivals and has made numerous CD recordings, including such projects as “Tomkins & Gibbons” (Diapason d'Or), which has been described as a discographic milestone in the organ world. He teaches at the Haute Ecole de Musique in Geneva.

Petr Skalka (b. 1974) received his early musical education from his father, a principal cellist at the Orchestra of Western Bohemia. He continued his studies at the Music Conservatory in Pilsen and later at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis, where he specialised in early music and baroque cello. Petr performs regularly with renowned orchestras and ensembles. He has participated in numerous award-winning CD recordings with the ensemble Café Zimmermann and Quatuor Rincontro. In 2001 Petr became Christophe Coin’s assistant at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis.

Violinist Pablo Valetti studied at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis. He regularly performs as a soloist and first violin with well-known early music ensembles such as Les Arts Florissants, Le Concert des Nations, Concerto Köln, Hesperion XXI among others. In addition to his career as a soloist, Valetti regularly conducts the Orquesta Barroca in Sevilla and teaches at the Escola Superior de Musica de Catalunya in Barcelona and at the Conservatoire in Nice. Valetti has devoted himself to the development of the ensemble Café Zimmermann since its founding in 1999. He plays a violin by Giovanni Battista Guadagnini from 1758.

Peter Biely (b. 1969) won a scholarship at the age of 18 to study with Joseph Gingold in the United States. He continued his studies at Yale University, where he studied violin, baroque violin and chamber music with the Tokyo String Quartet. He performed with the award-winning Assai String Quartet at major venues including Carnegie Hall. Since 1997 Peter lives in Granada, Spain, where he works as associate concertmaster of the Orquesta Ciudad de Granada. He is also a co-founder of the Orquesta Barroca de Granada and performs with the Cuarteto Ars Nova and Trio Ecos.

Jan Tuláček was born 1977 in Prague. He graduated from the Prague Conservatory of Music and, in 2006, from the Academy of Musical Arts as a guitarist in the class of Milan Zelenka. He joined the Prague Guitar Quartet in 2002 and appeared in concerts throughout Europe and North America. Tulácˇek performed contemporary music with the ‘Konvergence’ ensemble at the Prague Spring Festival. He currently focuses on solo and chamber music of the early Romantic period, in particular works by Viennese composers of the early 19th century. Tulácˇek performs regularly at the Haydn festival and other specialist music festivals. He has appeared on CD recordings and live radio and television broadcasts in the Czech Republic. Jan Tuláček is an active maker and restorer of historical guitars.