Borletti-Buitoni Trust
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Press contact for BB Trust
Debra Boraston
Telephone: +44 1424 883307
Press release date: October 2016

Bram van Sambeek Aho and Fagerlund Concertos / Solo Works on BIS SACD

Press release date: 25 October 2016
Bram van Sambeek
SACD release on BIS label
Two Bassoon Concertos by
Kalevi Aho and
Sebastian Fagerlund
Lahti Symphony Orchestra conducted by
Okko Kamu and Dima Slobodeniouk
International release date 2 December 2016
“I endured long trials to define my own limits, such as when my nose started bleeding or I had
to find a note that other bassoon freaks on the internet claimed to have played.”
(Bram van Sambeek on the intensity of learning these two works for bassoon)
Dutch instrumentalist Bram van Sambeek is a passionate advocate for the versatility and
expressivity of his bassoon and is the lead ambassador of the Save The Bassoon campaign
(launched at the Holland Festival 2015).
His debut recording on the BIS label features bassoon concertos and solo works by two
Finnish composers at the top of their game, Kalevi Aho (on a mission to compose a concerto
for every main orchestral instrument) and Sebastian Fagerlund. These two composers have
very different styles and have devised substantial symphonic works that put the bassoonist
very much to the fore and push the instrument’s and player’s capabilities to the extreme.
In Mana, Fagerlund’s concerto, he gives the bassoon the role of a spiritual leader (van
Sambeek says he feels like a kind of shaman) conjuring up new sound worlds from the
orchestra. (Kalevi Aho, on the other hand, has endeavoured to enrich and expand the solo
instrument’s sonic and expressive possibilities through his use of orchestration and describes
his concerto as ‘quite symphonic in character’.
In preparation for the concerto Fagerlund also wrote the solo piece Woodlands, which van
Sambeek includes here together with Aho’s dramatic Solo V. Robert von Bahr, founding
director of BIS, refers to Bram as ‘indecently gifted’ and goes on to say “The playing is beyond
incredible – how can anyone play an unwieldy instrument like that?” The Lahti Symphony
Orchestra is conducted by Okko Kamu for the Fagerlund, and Dima Slobodeniouk for the Aho.
As part of van Sambeek’s 2011 Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award, BBT co-commissioned Mana and
supported this recording. The Trust is also co-commissioning another concerto from Kalevi
Aho for two bassoons and orchestra for Bram.
See Bram’s premiere performance of Fagerlund’s Mana here:
FURTHER PRESS INFORMATION: Debra Boraston T. 01424 883307 M. 07989 434388
First bassoonist to receive the prestigious Dutch Music Prize
In 2011 he won a Borletti-Buitoni Award and was admitted to
the Chamber Music Society Two Programme of New York’s
Lincoln Center.
2002-2011 he was principal bassoonist of Rotterdam
Philharmonic Orchestra, a post he left to pursue a solo career.
As a soloist he has performed with, among others, the
Gothenburg, Lahti and Oulu Symphony Orchestras, Netherlands
Chamber Orchestra and Combattimento Consort.
He plays regularly as guest principal with leading orchestras such
as London Symphony Orchestra and Mahler Chamber Orchestra.
His own festival, Liquid Music Festival, at the Muziekgebouw
starts in July 2017 and aims to fluently combine extremely
different styles of music within one flowing concert of 17 parts
lasting three days and nights.
He embraces many musical styles including jazz, rock, heavy
metal and world music as well as classical.
He teaches bassoon at the conservatories in Rotterdam,
Amsterdam and The Hague.
See interviews with Bram here on the BBT website:
See Bram’s premiere performance of Fagerlund’s Mana here:

Press release date: February 2014

Borletti-Buitoni Trust announces 2014 Award Winners

The Borletti-Buitoni Trust (BBT) now gives awards every other year (the last ones were in 2012) and has significantly increased the amount given to each winner, making Awards now worth up to £30,000, Fellowships £20,000 and the Special Award £25,000. Apollon Musagète Quartet, soprano Ruby Hughes and violinist Itamar Zorman all receive Awards in 2014 in recognition of their enterprising careers and distinctive talent. Apollon Musagète has founded a festival while its spiritual mentor, Apollo, is the inspiration for many of the key works it commissions. Featured in Opera Now magazine’s ‘Who’s Hot in Opera’, Ruby Hughes likes to seek out challenging and unusual repertoire, while Itamar Zorman continues to develop a distinguished international career performing at concert and chamber halls worldwide. The Fellowships, awarded to musicians at an earlier stage in their careers, go to rising stars of the violin, piano, clarinet and horn. Benjamin Beilman and Gloria Campaner have a string of prestigious prizes and awards, as does Mark Simpson who forges a dual career as performer and composer. As well as being principal horn with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Alec Frank-Gemmill is also pursuing a successful career as a soloist and chamber musician. A Special Award goes to pianist and composer Kate Whitley who is passionately committed to bringing music to the most diverse and  ininitiated audiences.

Apollon Musagète Quartet string quartet (Poland)
Ruby Hughes soprano (UK)
Itamar Zorman violin (Israel) 

Kate Whitley piano/composer (UK) 

Benjamin Beilman violin (USA)
Gloria Campaner piano (Italy)
Alec Frank-Gemmill horn (UK)
Mark Simpson clarinet/composer (UK)

Press release date: February 2014

World Premiere Flute Concerto by Huw Watkins for Adam Walker

In addition to supporting Adam Walker’s acclaimed 2012 recital CD, Vocalise, BBT has also, with the London Symphony Orchestra (LSO), co-commissioned a flute concerto from composer Huw Watkins. Walker will perform the new work on 23 February with the LSO (of which he is principal flute) conducted by Daniel Harding at The Barbican London.

Tickets £10 -£37.


Press release date: February 2014

Debut solo CD release for harpist Sivan Magen

In February 2014 Linn Records releases the first of two solo harp recital CDs recorded by Sivan Magen. Entitled Fantasien, it features a variety of works by JS Bach, CPE Bach, Mozart, Brahms, Walter-Kuhne and Henriette Renié.

Press release date: February 2014

Fundraising Showcase Concert

Young guitarist Sean Shibe is on a mission to buy a guitar made by Spanish luthier Francisco Simplicio from the 1920s and ‘30s. Renowned for their golden tone and special affinity to the guitar music of the period, these instruments are akin to Stradivari in the violin world. To augment his remaining BBT Fellowship funds, he is giving a fundraising recital featuring works by Villa-Lobos, Agustín Barrios and Alberto Ginastera on 3 April hosted by the Vernon Ellis Foundation at 49 Queen’s Gate Terrace, London SW7 5PN.

Tickets £20 including refreshments. Booking by e-mail to