session 1: presentations

Three inspiring presentations:

Elisenda Carrasco

Elisenda Carrasco has been teaching and conducting for over twenty years. She has particularly developed and deepened her knowledge and technique with choirs for children and equal voices, gaining a lot of respect in the field. Worthy of particular note is her work with the Escolania de Montserrat and the Liceu Superior Conservatory of Music in Barcelona. She studied choral conducting in Barcelona, followed by courses with renowned conductors as Friedrich Bernius, Helmut Rilling and others.

She is the musical director of the “Òpera a secundària”, a project which is organised together with the Opera Theater in Barcelona, Gran Teatre del Liceu and the National Youth Orchestra of Catalonia. She also regularly collaborates with the Educational Service of Barcelona’s Auditori conducting and creating concerts for children and she’s the artistic co-director of Cantània, a singing project where more than 40.000 children are involved. Elisenda has also been the musical director of the Cor infantil Sant Cugat since they began in 1991, and the female chamber choir Voxalba, where she has paid special attention to developing a 20th century repertoire.

She is also active as composer. Since 2012, she is member of the Music Commission of the European Choral Association / Europa Cantat.


Chris Shurety

Chris Shurety (UK) is director of CoMA – contemporary music for all – an organization that gives amateur musicians the chance to take an active part in the performance of works by some of the brightest new composers alongside that of established figures.

When CoMA started, there was a real shortage of quality, modern repertoire, suited to the technical abilities of amateur players. Amongst the first composers to be asked to address this shortage were Michael Finnissy and Diana Burrell, whom CoMA commissioned to write works which could be performed by amateur musicians, without any compromise in musical style or quality. Many leading UK and international composers have written for CoMA including Philip Cashian, Jonathan Harvey, Stephen Montague, Michael Nyman, Alwynne Pritchard and John Tavener to name but a few. Works written for CoMA have been honoured at the British Composer Awards several times.


Merlijn Twaalfhoven

Merlijn Twaalfhoven (1976, the Netherlands) studied viola and composition with Klaas de Vries. With his foundation La Vie sur Terre, he creates projects in the Netherlands and abroad involving professional and amateur musicians, theatre makers and others.

His projects literally cross borders in conflict zones such as Cyprus, Palestine and (in april 2013) Syria. In “Duizend stemmen” (Thousand voices) he builds 40 amateur choirs around 40 professional singers to perform new work in unusual settings.