AIR ZVJEZDANE STAZE 24
TEAM

TEAM

Artist in Residence Programme Zvjezdane staze [Mijakovići, BiH]

CORE TEAM

BELMA BEŠLIĆ-GÁL

Founder & Artistic Director
Belma Bešlić-Gál @ MUD Studio Vienna [04/2023] 𝐏𝐡𝐨𝐭𝐨𝐠𝐫𝐚𝐩𝐡𝐲: Svetlana Gazić
Belma Bešlić-Gál @ MUD Studio Vienna [04/2023] 𝐏𝐡𝐨𝐭𝐨𝐠𝐫𝐚𝐩𝐡𝐲: Svetlana Gazić

COMPOSER – PIANIST – CURATOR – ARTIST

Belma Bešlić-Gál // Born 1978 in the industrial city of Tuzla, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Drawing on various forms of contemporary music with an emphasis on avant-garde concepts of intermedia music theater, her compositions range from orchestral, chamber, and solo works to installation art, media art, and literature. Bešlić-Gál studied piano at the University of Music FRANZ LISZT Weimar (Gerlinde Otto, Lazar Berman) and composition at the Kunstuniversität Graz (Bernhard Lang, Klaus Lang). As of 2011, she has been co-curator of the Transdisciplinary Festival for Music and Sound Art shut up and listen! in Vienna.

In the summer of 1991, the bloody disintegration of Yugoslavia began. The siege of her hometown Tuzla began in May 1992. The subsequent 13-month of living in the war, followed by escape and Refugee Status in Germany, became the most formative experiences of her life, influencing not only her artistic concepts but also the perception of earthly existence per se.

The conceptual basis of her work is an intensive preoccupation with the phenomenon of time. Combining instruments, light and objects, as well as architectural concepts and audiovisual projections, she focuses on exploring ways to manipulate audiences’ sensory perceptions. Other important areas of her transdisciplinary approach to various representations of contemporary composition include the integration of existentialist and futurist ideas and concepts, the influence of microgravity and space science on the hypothetical (extraterrestrial) art of tomorrow, and the destructive effects of reactionism and nationalism on (post-Yugoslav) art, culture, and society in general.

Bešlić-Gál’s works have been presented in numerous concerts and radio portraits in Europe, North and South America, and performed by ensembles such as TENM, Ensemble Phace, mise-en ensemble, Ensemble Kontrapunkte, Ensemble Reconsil, WISE: Wien – International Soloists Ensemble, OENM Ensemble, szene instrumental, Ensamble del Cepromusic, Ensemble Platypus, I z M Ensemble.  She has been invited to festivals such as Soundings Festival (London), Styriarte Festival (Graz), International Computer Music Conference (Ljubljana), World New Music Days (Bratislava), Festival Sláturtíð (Reykjavík), Encuentro del Arte Sonoro Tsonami (Buenos Aires). 

Her work and compositions have received various awards, including the Publicity Prize 2019 (SKE Fund), Austrian State Scholarship for Composition 2014 and 2024 (Federal Chancellery of the Republic of Austria), Work Scholarship for Composition of the City of Vienna 2024, I z S Art & Culture Prize (Ingrid zu Solms Foundation), International Work Scholarship “Composer in Residence – Women Composers to Frankfurt (Archiv Frau und Musik).

www.belmabeslic-gal.eu

ANDREA NIKOLIĆ

VaClaF Festival | WISE – Ensemble [President General & Artistic Director]
Andrea Nikolic © Artist
Andrea Nikolic © Artist

VIOLINIST & VIOLIST – ARTISTIC DIRECTOR & MUSICAL ACTIVIST – LEADER/CONDUCTOR & CURIOUS EXPLORER – TEACHER & EDUCATOR

Andrea Nikolić [Nikolitsch] has developed into a versatile and notably accomplished professional in the art and culture industry. Originally from Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, she has found her artistic and personal home in Vienna after growing up in Varaždin, Croatia.

With a mixture of dedication and tireless energy, Andrea has established herself as an internationally sought-after violinist, violist, artistic director, teacher, conductor and musical activist. Her commitment to pushing boundaries and exploring different musical languages and cultures has earned her recognition for her versatility, integrity and imaginative interpretations.

As founder, producer, general director and artistic director of the Vareš Classic Festival in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Andrea has created an international chamber music festival of great significance since its inception in 2013. The festival has garnered international praise and recognition, with Andrea developing more than 200 original concepts and programs to bring the arts to a wider audience. She also founded and directs the Vienna-based WISE: Wien – International Soloists Ensemble, which curates artistically engaging concert seasons and festivals of contemporary music.

In response to the challenges of the pandemic, Andrea created the CRO-ArT Festival 2020 in Vienna, which presents contemporary art music as a symbol of resilience and rebellion against cultural adversity. Her inventive programming and tireless commitment to artistic excellence have led to growing success and appreciation for the festival.

Throughout her career, Andrea has championed collaboration and partnerships, forging links with international organizations and artists to promote cultural exchange and artistic innovation. As a leader, conductor and curious explorer, Andrea’s artistic journey has been marked by numerous highlights, including performances of forgotten classical concertos, interdisciplinary recitals combining music and literature, and collaborations with contemporary composers on world premieres. Her recent successes include premiering and recording viola concertos, receiving awards for outstanding artistic achievement and expanding her skills as a conductor and composer.

https://www.andreanikolic.com/

GORAN STEVANOVIĆ

AiR Zvjezdane staze [Creative Hub | Mentoring]
Goran Stevanović © Artist
Goran Stevanović © Artist

ACCORDIONIST – COMPOSER – TEACHER/EDUCATOR

Praised by the press as a “true magician” and “ambassador for the versatility of his instrument” (Hannoversche Allgemeine Zeitung), Goran Stevanović is considered an important accordionist of the present day. Like hardly anyone else, the young musician has succeeded in establishing the accordion on concert stages outside the usual repertoire. His versatile musical skills make him a sought-after chamber music partner of artistic personalities such as the oboist Albrecht Mayer, by whom he was introduced in 2020 and played a duo concert as part of the Musikwoche Hitzacker Festival.

His extraordinarily broad repertoire, ranging from early music, Schubert, Bruckner, Mahler and Hindemith to contemporary composers, has allowed Goran Stevanović to develop his own unique sound aesthetic and style over the years. He has already thrilled audiences several times in world premieres, including compositions by George Lewis, Feliz Anne Reyes Macahis, Randall Meyers, Aleksandra Vrebalov and Markus Stockhausen. He is regularly involved in innovative concert formats: in 2020, for example, he premiered Clemens Gadenstätter’s impressive work “Die Zelle” together with Klangforum Heidelberg, and in 2019 and 2021 he was involved in the multi-part world premiere of José María Sánchez-Verdú’s “Commedia”. The third part of this work, based on texts by Dante Alighieri, will have its world premiere in the coming season – combined with a CD production. Other highlights included the multimedia project “Circling Realities” with the Orchester im Treppenhaus, from which a completely new concert format developed in times of Corona, as well as the “melaTONin” with trio.s co-developed by Stevanović – a concert in which a sleep cycle is made musically experienceable in its phases.

The Hannover-based musician has also performed at major festivals such as the Bruckner Festival Linz, Young Euro Classics Berlin and the SWR Festival, and in 2019 he received acclaim in Liverpool as part of the UNESCO Solist Exchange Program. His most important collaborations include regular projects with the Ensemble Mini Berlin and Orchester im Treppenhaus in Hannover. He also forms duos with Hamburg-based double bassist Felix von Werder, viola player Yannick Hettich and is also an integral part of the European concert scene with his trio.s, founded in 2015. In addition to his chamber music projects, engagements took him to renowned orchestras such as the NDR Radiophilharmonie, the Göttingen Symphony Orchestra and the St George Hall Residence Orchestra in Liverpool. His concerts were broadcasted by Deutschlandfunk, NDR, ARD and BR Klassik.

Highlights of the coming season 2023/24 include performances at the Elbphilharmonie, Konzerthaus Berlin, BASF Ludwigshafen, the Thüringer Bachwochen Festival and the Seasounds Festival, along with the scholarship of Alfred Töpfer Foundation’s CONCERTO21 Academy for Soloists.

Goran Stevanović is a multiple prize winner of national and international competitions (China, USA, Spain), including the German Accordion Music Prize 2012. Born and raised in Bosnia-Herzegovina, he picked up the accordion for the first time as a child – the instrument being firmly anchored in the SEVDAH – folk music of his home country. For his studies, he moved to Hannover, where he completed his concert exam in 2018 as part of the “Meisterstück” series at HMTM and is now a lecturer at this institution.

www.goranstevanovich.com

BERNHARD GÁL

AiR Zvjezdane staze [Creative Hub |  Mentoring]
Bernhard Gál © Veronika Mayer
Bernhard Gál © Veronika Mayer

COMPOSER – SOUND ARTIST – ARTISTIC RESEARCHER – MUSICOLOGIST

Austrian artist, composer and musicologist Bernhard Gál is equally at home in the fields of contemporary music, installation art and media art. As of now, Gál has created around 80 sound installations and intermedia art projects, combining sound, light, objects, as well as architectural concepts and video projections into multidimensional and prevalently site-specific art works. He composes for acoustic instruments and electroacoustic music. As a laptop musician, Gál has performed extensively on five continents, and worked with numerous musicians of the electronic and improvised music scenes. Another aspect of his work is interdisciplinary collaborations, e.g. with the choreographers/dancers Christian Aichinger and Akemi Takeya, the writer Róbert Gál, the visual artists Susana Gaudêncio and Mandy Morrison, the architect Yumi Kori, the film maker Emre Tuncer, as well as collaborative projects with fellow musicians such as Belma Bešlić-Gál, Kai Fagaschinski, Klaus Filip and Jennifer Walshe.

After studies at the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna (Sound Engineering) and the University of Vienna (Musicology), and a year-long residency in New York City, he has focused on his artistic activities. Since 2006, Gál has been serving as the artistic director of ‘shut up and listen!’- Transdisciplinary Festival for Music and Sound Art, in Vienna. Between 2006 and 2007 he taught sound art at the University of Arts in Berlin. From 2010-13 Gál held a research position at the Paris Lodron University Salzburg, in conjunction with the doctoral college ‘Art and the Public’. In 2021, he completed a PhD at the University Mozarteum Salzburg, with a transdisciplinary thesis about sound installation art. His research activities include scholarly publications, conference participations, lectures and workshops, especially on sound art and contemporary music. Since autumn 2020 Gál holds a teaching position at the Certificate Program in Electroacoustic and Experimental Music (ELAK) at the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna. His research activities include scientific publications, conference presentations, lectures and workshops, particularly concerning installative sound art and contemporary music. As head of the three-year FWF-PEEK project AUDIO GHOSTS, Gál is currently engaged in the artistic exploration of auditory illusions in sound art.

Gál’s works have been presented internationally in concerts, exhibitions, public space installations, and radio portraits, and performed by ensembles such as Alter Ego (Rome), CFMW (Taipei), the Kammerensemble Neue Musik (Berlin), the Ensemble Noamnesia (Chicago), the OENM-Ensemble (Salzburg), and Phace (Vienna). He has been invited to international music and art festivals including Wien Modern, Vienna; MaerzMusik, Berlin; Sonambiente, Berlin; Donaueschinger Musiktage; Nuova Consonanza, Rome; MATA, New York; Soundfield, Chicago; Mutek, Montreal; Musicacoustica, Beijing; FILE, São Paulo. In recognition of his music and art projects, Gál has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the Karl Hofer Prize Berlin 2001, an annual composer fellowship from the DAAD Artists in Berlin Programme 2003, the Austrian State Scholarship for Composition 2004 & 2016, and the Outstanding Artist Award for Music of the City of Vienna 2010. His work has been made available on various audio publications and documented with catalogue books and DVDs. In 2022 his dissertation HÖRORTE | KLANGRÄUME. Eine transdisziplinäre Topografie installativer Klangkunst was published by Wolke Verlag (sinefonia DIGITAL #3, wolke, Hofheim).

www.bernhardgal.com/

www.mdw.ac.at/audio-ghosts/