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Raúl Gouveia

Born in Reguengos de Monsaraz, Portugal, he began his studies with 14 years old in saxophone at the Philharmonic Society of the same town with professor Jorge Paulino. In 2010 he studied at the Alto Alentejo Regional Conservatoire with professor Ana Quintas, and in 2011 he proceeded to the Professional Course in Music from the portuguese National Conservatoire in Lisbon, with professor Artur Mendes. He ended the course with professor Hélder Alves. In 2014 he continued his studies on Music Graduate (Performance) at the Lisbon University, in the School of Music, with professor José Massarrão. Raúl is currently attending the its 3rd year.

He attended to masterclasses with some of the most well known saxophone teachers, such as Jean Yves Formeau, Albert Juliá, Otis Murphy, Joonatan Rautiola, Jean-Marie Londeix, Hélder Alves, Fernando Ramos, José Massarrão, Kenneth Tse and James Houlik. He attended to workhops and improvement courses within jazz and contemporary music with Paulo Gaspar, Naná Sousa Dias, Francisco Andrade, Jorge Sá Machado and Christopher Bochmann. He worked with the conductors Jean Sebastién Béreau, Francisco Sequeira, Fernando Marinho, Alexandre Branco, Philip Sparke, Adam Gorb, Jacob de Haan, Luís Clemente, Carlos Amarelinho, Alberto Roque, Rafael Agulló Albors, António Menino, Délio Gonçalves, Mitchell Fennell, Tiago Alves, Pedro Sobral Santos, Élio Murcho, Rui Silva, António Rosado, José Veloso, Christopher Bochmann, Nikolay Lalov and Craig Kirchoff.

He has performed in some of the most renowned venues of Portugal, such as Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation’s Auditorium, Teatro Camões, Auditório dos Oceanos from the Lisbon Casino and Aula Magna, from the Lisbon University.

Raul won many prizes, among which: 1st Prize at the 5th International Saxophone Competition“Vítor Santos” (Palmela) in the Junior Category, the 1st Prize at the 9th Music Competition Anatólio Falé (Lagos), the 1st Prize at the 2nd National Saxophone Competition “Sons do Cabral” (Belmonte) in the Júnior Category, and also the 2nd Prize ate the 1st National Competition of Music Interpretation “Cultivarte Jovem” (Lisboa) in the Echelon A, all in 2014. He won the 1st prize again at the no 3rd National Saxophone Competition “Sons do Cabral” (Belmonte) in the Júnior Category in 2015, and the 3rd Prize Ex-Aequo at the 6th International Saxophone Competition “Vítor Santos” (Palmela) in the Senior Category.

In November 2014 he joined the Portuguese Air Force, where he was a musician from the Portuguese Air Force Band until December 2016. In October 2015 he performed as a soloist with the Band, premiering the work “Assimetrik” from Daniel Schvetz for clarinet, tenor saxophone, marimba and wind orchestra.

He is a founding member of the saxophone quartet “Tejo Quartet”, and he collaborated with the Portuguese Youth Symphonic Orchestra and the Cascais Symphonic. He premiered and performed works from composers such as Eurico Carrapatoso and Daniel Schvetz.

Since March 2017 he is a Permanent Musician of the Portuguese Army Band. He is saxophone teacher at the Cascais Music School.

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Marco Alves dos Santos

Marco finished his Vocal Studies at Guildhall School of Music & Drama with a fellowship from the portuguese Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, and beganhis career as a professional soloist on 2003. He performed as soloist in Portugal, Spain,France, Italy, United Kingdom and Germany, giving life to roles such as “Tamino” (Zauberflöte), “Mr. Owen” (Postcard from Morocco de D. Argento), “Tristan” (Le Vin Herbé F. Martin), “Leandro” (La Spinalba), “Orphée” (Descente d’Orphée aux Enfers), “Ernesto” (Don Pasquale), “Anthony” (Sweeney Todd), “Duca di Mantova” (Rigoletto), “Die Hexe – A Bruxa” (Hansel & Gretel), “Prunier” (La Rondine), “The Governor” (Candide, Bernstein), “Ferrando” (Cosí fan Tutte). More recently, he was “Conte Almaviva” (Barbiere di Seviglia, G.Opera), “Acis” (Acis & Galatea), “Male Chorus” (Rape of Lucretia), “Aegisth” (Elektra), “Arbace” (Idomeneo), “Evangelist” at the Christmas, Easter and Ascension Oratorias, and St. John’s Passion (Bach), and also soloist tenor in the 9th Symphony (Beethoven), Messiah (Handel), Petite Messe Solonelle (Rossini) and Requiem (Mozart).

On the symphonic repertoire he worked with the Portuguese Symphonic, the Gulbenkian and the Lisbon Metropolitan Orchestras, the Remix Ensemble, the Algarve Orchestra, Beiras Philharmonic, the Espinho Classical Orchestra, Portuguese Northern Orchestra, the Youth Symphonic Orchestra, Divino Sospiro, Portuguese Music’s Patrimonial Movement, and Ginásio Ópera, on portuguese stages such as S. Carlos, Gulbenkian, CCB, Casa da Música, Coliseu do Porto, Teatro das Figuras and Teatro Aberto among others.

During the season of 2018/19 Marco will perform Gilvaz” (The Rosemary and Marjoram Wars), “Recitant” (L’enfance du Christ), “Don Ottavio” (D. Giovanni), “Tybalt” (Romeo and Juliet), “Evangelist” on the St. John’s Passion and the arias of St. Mathew’s Passion within Portuguese Symphonic Orchestra, S. Roque, Metropolitan Orchestra, CCB, Gulbenkian Foundation and Aix-en-Provence seasons.

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Carolina Figueiredo

Carolina Figueiredo completed her Singing Course at the Lisbon Conservatory of Music in 2005, and studies today on a regular basis with Manuela de Sá. She also regularly attends masterclasses with Susan Waters and Lucia Mazzaria.

Ms. Figueiredo has performed in concert with great national choirs and orchestras, having participated in works such as St. John’s Passion (J. S. Bach), Messiah (Handel), Petite Messe Solennelle (Rossini), Les nuits d’été (Berlioz), Manfred (Schumann), Les Béatitudes (Franck), Christmas Oratoria (Saint-Saens), Il Tramonto (Respighi) and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Mendelssohn). She participated on the premieres of works from portuguese composeres such as Te Deum from Francisco António de Almeida, João de Sousa Carvalho, Brás Francisco de Lima and Jerónimo Francisco de Lima.

In opera, she sang in Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette (Gertrude), Verdi’s La Traviata (Annina), Puccini’s Madama Butterfly (Kate Pinkerton), Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges (Maman, Tasse Chinoise e Libellule), Sousa Carvalho’s L’Angelica (Licori), Pedro Amaral’s Beaumarchais (Countess Rosina), Zemlinsky’s Der Zwerg (3rd Maid), Poulenc’s Dialogues des Carmelites (Mère Jeanne), Leal Moreira’s Ester (Assuero) and Mozart’s Bastien and Bastienne (Bastien). She was conducted by Leonardo García Alarcón, Michael Corboz, Lorenzo Viotti, Michele Gamba, Domenico Longo, Laurence Foster, Aapo Häkinnen, Cesário Costa, Joana Carneiro, Pedro Amaral, João Paulo Santos and Marcos Magalhães, among others.

Ms. Figueiredo often performs in recitals of baroque and romantic music, accompanied by Adriano Jordão, Olga Prats, João Paulo Santos, José Manuel Brandão and Anna Tomasik. She premiered and recorded works of contemporary music (Carlos Marecos, Jorge Salgueiro).

In parallel with her work as a musician, Carolina pursues also a carrier as a legal translator, having graduated in Law and holding a post-graduate Dip Trans qualification from the Chartered Institute of Linguists.

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Carla Simões

Born in Lisbon, Carla Simões made her dèbut as “Pamina”, in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte, and went on gathering a vast operatic repertoire of Mozart roles, such as “Donna Anna”, “Fiordiligi or Cherubino”, and others: Avondano’s “Clarice and Lisetta” from Il Mondo della Luna, “Nora” in Vaughn Williams’ Riders to the Sea, Marcos Portugal’s “Countess Ernesta” in Le Donne Cambiate e “Rosina” in O Basculho da Chaminé, Donizetti’s “Norina” in Don Pasquale and Rita, Glück’s “Paride e Pallade” from Paride ed Elena, Leal Moreira’s “Peppa” in A Vingança da Cigana and “Albina” at A Saloia Enamorada, Massenet’s “Crobyle” in Thaïs, “Anna” from Verdi’s Nabucco, Gounod’s “Juliette” in Romeo et Juliette, “IV Mägd” at R. Strauss Elektra, and “Mercédès” from Bizet’s Carmen.
She also appeared in concert as a Soloist in several Oratorio pieces such as: Mozart’s Exultate, Jubilate, Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem, O. Respighi’s Lauda per la Natività del Signore – “Maria”, Verdi’s Requiem, Handel’s Ode on St. Cecilia’s Day, J.S. Bach’s and Pergolesi’s Magnificats, Vivaldi’s Gloria, Haydn’s The Creation or Gershwin’s Catfish Row.
She has performed under the baton of António Vassalo Lourenço, Antonio Pirolli, Cemi’i Can Deliorman, Cesário Costa, Donato Renzetti, João Paulo Santos, Julia Jones, Leo Hussain, Marcos Magalhães, Martin Andre, Moritz Gnann, Osvaldo Ferreira, Paulo Vassalo Lourenço, Pedro Neves, Rui Pinheiro and Tapio Tuomela and worked with prestigious music ensembles such as the Portuguese Symphony Orchestra, Lisbon Metropolitan Orchestra, Gulbenkian Orchestra, the Ensemble «Os Músicos do Tejo» and Cascais & Oeiras Chamber Orchestra. She has been regularly invited to participate in important Music Festivals (MusicAtlântico Festival – Azores 2006, Festival Culturel Européen de Rouen – 2006, Festival de Mateus – 2005, Estoril Music Festival – 2006, Festival Allgarve – 2010, Festival Ao Largo (TNSC – 2012), Festival Cistermúsica (2014, 2016) and great national venues (Lisbon Opera House – TNSC, Lisbon Municipal Theatre – S. Luiz, Lisbon Cultural Centre Main Auditorium, Caloust Goulbenkian Foundation Main Auditorium, etc…).
She has been awarded the 2nd Prize at the Luisa Todi National Singing Competition in 2011.

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Aiman Mussakhajayeva

National Artist of the Republic of Kazakhstan and Rector of Kazakh National University of Arts, Aiman Mussakhajayeva is a prominent public figure. She graduated from the Moscow Conservatory named after Tchaikovsky (with Professor Valery Klimov). Laureate and winner: International Contest in Belgrade (Yugoslavia, 1976), International Contest named after Paganini in Genoa (Italy, 1981), International Contest in Tokyo (Japan, 1983), International Contest named after Sibelius in Helsinki (Finland, 1985), VIII International Contest named after Tchaikovsky in Moscow (1986).

Aiman Mussakhajayeva holds the honorary title of UNESCO «Artist of Peace» (1998), member of the International Academy of Art, Valmont winner (Italy) for Outstanding Artistic Temperament and Peace Mission, Vatican Award, the Silver Cup Santa Chechilliya for contribution to the development and strengthening of cultural ties between countries, the winner of State Award of the Republic of Kazakhstan for literature, art, architecture (2000), an independent award from Kazakhstan patrons of the art “Platinum Tarlan “(2002).

In 2002, the name of Aiman Mussakhajayeva was listed in the World IBC honor roll «2000 outstanding musicians of XX century». Aiman Mussakhajayeva was awarded the State Prize for Peace and Progress of the First President of the Republic of Kazakhstan for special achievements in music art. She is a member of the Association of the winners of the International Contest named after Tchaikovsky. In 2010 Aiman Mussakhajayeva was awarded the Order for contribution and development of Russian-Kazakh Friendship in culture and education. A. Mussakhajayeva’s name entered in the Encyclopedic Dictionary of Cambridge University “Outstanding musicians of the twentieth century” (2002), and the International Biographical Centre in Cambridge awarded her the title of “International Musician of 2003.”

The repertoire of Aiman Mussakhajayeva is made of music of different eras, styles and genres. She performs in the best concert halls in Europe, Asia, USA, works with well-known musicians including Paul Gililov, Michael Kogan, Vladimir Spivakov, etc. She has a CD records with the world leading chamber and symphony orchestras – Winner Symphoniker Orchestra, Royal Symphony Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra of Russia, European Youth Symphony Orchestra and other groups directed by Vladimir Ashkenazy, Pavel Kogan, Vladimir Spivakov, Saulius Sondetsiksa, Mikhail Pletnev and many other. Her talent was applauded in the best concert halls in the world: Carnegie Hall (NY), Musicverein (Wien) Gaveau, Cortot (Paris), Santa Cecilia (Rome), Queen Elizabeth Hall, Wigmore Hall, Barbican Hall (London), Konzerthaus Berlin , Lincoln Centre (USA).

Her musical and social activities include her work as a violinist, member of ensemble, principal of Kazakh National Academy of Music, and as jury member of many international contests and festivals.

Along with well-known musicians, Aiman was member of the juries of the international violin contest named after Tchaikovsky (1993) in Moscow, the Demidov Contest in Yekaterinburg (1995), the International Violin Contest by A. I. Yampolskogo (1996) in Dubna (Russia), the International Violin Contest by Michelangelo Abbado in Milan (Italy), the contest named after Franz Schubert (Italy), and Y. Bramsa (Owada). She is a member of the winners of the International Tchaikovsky Contest Association.

Professor A. Mussakhajayeva holds international master classes in Europe, America and South Korea.

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Petio Kalomenski

First Bass of the Portuguese Symphony Orchestra, was born in 1956 in Sofia, Bulgaria. He was a student of Professor Todor Toshev School of Music in Sofia and at the Academy between 1970 and 1981. As graduate, attended masterclasses with the same teacher.
Participated in the national Youth Music Awards, where he earned 2nd place. Beetween 1981 and 1992 played in Sofia Philharmonic and has been since 1988, head of the same suit. First Bass was in Sofia Festival Orchestra – directed by Emil Tchakurov – often worked with the Chamber Orchestra “Soloists of Sofia”. He played as soloist in the Orchestra of the School of Sofia Chamber Orchestra of Sofia Philharmonic, New Philharmonic Portuguese and Portuguese Symphony Orchestra.
He began his work in Portugal in 1992, the New Philharmonic and the Portuguese from 1993 in Portuguese Symphony Orchestra, where he holds the post of head of Suit.

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Carolina Alves

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Lilia Donkova

Lilia Donkova was born in Sofia, Bulgaria in 1980. She started playing the violin at the age of 6 years and was soon accepted into the National Music School in her native city. At the age of only 8 years, Lilia won an award when she appeared on stage at the “Talented Young Musicians” Festival in Sofia. She followed this in 1990 when she was a prize-winner (aged 9 – 12 years old category) in the Kotzian Violin Competition held in Prague.

In 1992, Lilia moved to Portugal with her family, continuing to study the violin with her father. She kept the rest of hers studies privately in Bulgaria and in 1999 she graduated from the National Music School of Sofia as a part-time student.

In the same year, she won a scholarship to study at the Royal Academy of Music in London, where she began her studies under Professor Lydia Mordkovich. Whilst studying at the Academy, Lilia was awarded several scholarships, including the Barbara Kesterton Award, the Belmoore Woodgate Award and the Picker Trust Award. She was also awarded the John Mundy Award and the Winifred Violin Prize. Lilia was also a member of the Academy Soloists – an elite string ensemble directed by Clio Gould.

During her studies, she played on an Italian violin – Postechini, kindly lent to her from the Royal Academy collection.Graduating with a 1st Class Honours in 2003, she continued her studies on the Post-Graduate Course in Performance, finally graduating in July 2004 with an extra award for her final recital.

Lilia performs as a soloist as well as a chamber and orchestral musician, playing at events such as the International Music Festival of Estoril in Portugal, Festival Iberico in Spain, the Cremona Exhibition of Stradivari Violins, where she played a Stradivarius violin with the Academy Soloists. Lilia has given numerous recitals throughout many European countries, such as England, Portugal, Spain and Bulgaria.

In 2004, she played as a soloist with the London Soloists Chamber Orchestra under David Josefowitz at the Queen Elizabeth Hall- Purcell Room at the South Bank Centre in London as part of the “Genius of the Violin” Festival.

As well as being the leader of the orchestra, she currently appears regularly as a soloist with the Cascais and Oeiras Chamber Orchestra in Portugal.

Lilia also played with the London Sinfonietta and worked with such distinguished conductors as Sir Colin Davies, Sir Charles Mackerras, Lutz Kohler and Jean Pascal Tortelier amongst others.

Lilia has participated in many masterclasses including ones given by such eminent musicians as M. Fuks, S. Rosenberg, J. Seiger, C. Myerscough, Z, Zeitlin, N. Brainin, I. Neaman and G. Badov.

Lilia speaks fluent English, Portuguese, Spanish and BulgarianLilia Donkova was born in Sofia, Bulgaria in 1980. She started playing the violin at the age of 6 years and was soon accepted into the National Music School in her native city. At the age of only 8 years, Lilia won an award when she appeared on stage at the “Talented Young Musicians” Festival in Sofia. She followed this in 1990 when she was a prize-winner (aged 9 – 12 years old category) in the Kotzian Violin Competition held in Prague.

In 1992, Lilia moved to Portugal with her family, continuing to study the violin with her father. She kept the rest of hers studies privately in Bulgaria and in 1999 she graduated from the National Music School of Sofia as a part-time student.
In the same year, she won a scholarship to study at the Royal Academy of Music in London, where she began her studies under Professor Lydia Mordkovich. Whilst studying at the Academy, Lilia was awarded several scholarships, including the Barbara Kesterton Award, the Belmoore Woodgate Award and the Picker Trust Award. She was also awarded the John Mundy Award and the Winifred Violin Prize. Lilia was also a member of the Academy Soloists – an elite string ensemble directed by Clio Gould.

During her studies, she played on an Italian violin – Postechini, kindly lent to her from the Royal Academy collection. Graduating with a 1st Class Honours in 2003, she continued her studies on the Post-Graduate Course in Performance, finally graduating in July 2004 with an extra award for her final recital.

Lilia performs as a soloist as well as a chamber and orchestral musician, playing at events such as the International Music Festival of Estoril in Portugal, Festival Iberico in Spain, the Cremona Exhibition of Stradivari Violins, where she played a Stradivarius violin with the Academy Soloists. Lilia has given numerous recitals throughout many European countries, such as England, Portugal, Spain and Bulgaria.
In 2004, she played as a soloist with the London Soloists Chamber Orchestra under David Josefowitz at the Queen Elizabeth Hall- Purcell Room at the South Bank Centre in London as part of the “Genius of the Violin” Festival.

As well as being the leader of the orchestra, she currently appears regularly as a soloist with the Cascais and Oeiras Chamber Orchestra in Portugal.
Lilia also played with the London Sinfonietta and worked with such distinguished conductors as Sir Colin Davies, Sir Charles Mackerras, Lutz Kohler and Jean Pascal Tortelier amongst others.

Lilia has participated in many masterclasses including ones given by such eminent musicians as M. Fuks, S. Rosenberg, J. Seiger, C. Myerscough, Z, Zeitlin, N. Brainin, I. Neaman and G. Badov.

Lilia speaks fluent English, Portuguese, Spanish and Bulgarian.

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Zhanna Antonyuk

Born in Kiev (Ukraine).She began her musical studies at the age of six. As a child, she was part of the cast of the National Theater of Opera and Ballet of Ukraine.
She completed her training in harpsichord at the National Conservatory’s School of Music. At the age of fifteen she entered the Kiev Higher Musical College. She finished the course with distinction and in the same year entered the Kiev State Higher Conservatory.
Between 1995 and 1997, she was part of the National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine.
Since 1997, she resides in Portugal. For three years she taught at the Ponta Delgada Regional Conservatory. Since 2001, she has been a member of the Cascais and Oeiras Chamber Orchestra

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Viktoria Chichkova

Born in 1971 in Sofia, Bulgária, begun playing the cello at seven years of age at the National Music School of Sofia under the directions of Prof. Todor Baharov.

In 1982 Viktoria won 2nd Prize at the National Competition for childeren “Svetoslav Obretenov” aged till 12. In 1986 she won 1st Prize of the National Competition for Chamber Music and in 1989 1st Prize at the National Competition ” Young Talents” in Kjustendil.

She made her debut as a soloist in 1988 performing with several Bulgarian orchestras in Sofia, Schumen and other towns.

Viktoria has also recorded many works for the National Radio and television including Vivaldi’s Concerto for two celli and Chamber Orchestra

Viktoria continued her studies at the Academy of Music of Sofia graduating in 1995.

After that she resided in Portugal with her family. In 1996 Viktoria began playing with OCCO and now she is a full time member of this orchestra and a teacher at the Music Conservatory of Cascais. Between 1998 and 2002 she was also a teacher at the Professional Music School in Evora, Portugal.

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Ana Elisa Ribeiro

Ana Elisa Ribeiro was born in Lisbon, in 1978. She started her musical studies with her father and continued on the St.ª Cecília Academy of Music, in the class of Prof. João Nogueira, having finished the Complementary Course of Violin in the class of Prof. Vasco Brôco, simultaneously with high school. Here she participated in several auditions, as a soloist and also as a member of a group, namely with the “Concert in A b major for violin, cello and orchestra” of A. Vivaldi, performed at the “Maio Cultural” (Lisbon European Capital of Culture) in 1994.

Had a scholarship by the Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian from 1993 to 1996.

For three years she worked with the “Orquestra Sinfónica de Jovens das Escolas de Música Particulares” (Juvenile Symphonic Orchestra of Private Schools ) carried out during the summer courses, as well as during the period of training of the Juvenile Symphonic Orchestra ’99, of which she was a member from 1998 to 2000 and with whom she recorded a CD with works of the maestro Christopher Bochmann.

She continued her studies on the Academia Nacional Superior de Orquestra (National High Academy of Orchestra) with the concertino of the Lisbon Metropolitan Orchestra at that time, Fulvio Liviabella. She attended master classes of violin with professors Gerardo Ribeiro, Yfrah Neaman and Gareguin Aroutiounian.

She also attended master classes of orchestra with Jean-Sébastian Béreau, Jean Marc Burfin e Bertrand Broudier. In chamber music she attended the master class of Prof. Hege Waldeland and recently, was part of the seminar for master in musical arts on the work of Mozart on modern instruments, carried out at the Escola Superior de Música de Lisboa (Music University of Lisbon – E.S.M.L.) under guidance of Prof. Rien de Reede.

She has collaborated with the Metropolitan Orchestra of Lisbon and with several chamber orchestras, namely the Chamber Orchestra of Braga, the Classical Orchestra of Algarve, the Orchestra of Baixo Alentejo and the Juvenile Orchestra of the City of Évora, with which she participated in concerts at the Music Festival of Badajoz and in Hannover, at the World Exposition 2000. Recently she has collaborated in several concerts as a guest instrumentalist with the Gulbenkian Orchestra and with the Simphonietta Orchestra of Lisbon.

In 2001 she was invited by the E.S.M.L. to integrate the Erasmus Chamber Orchestra, which took place in the Netherlands, in the city of Utrecht, under guidance of professor Charles-André Linale.

She has finished her degree in violin at the Lisbon University of Music (E.S.M.L.) in 2001, in the class of Prof. Alexandra Mendes and in Chamber Music with Prof. Clélia Vital.

In 2004 she was a member of the Vivaldian Chamber Orchestra, having played at the Music Festival of Leiria.

She has also been a trainee member of the Chamber Orchestra of Cascais and Oeiras and, meanwhile, has been made an effective member. She has played as a soloist under guidance of maestro Nikolay Lalov the “Concert for 4 Violins” and the “Concert for Violin and Cello” of A. Vivaldi, among others.

She is presently teaching violin at the Concertino School of Music.

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Catherine Stockwell

Of U.S. origin, Catherine Stockwell studied at Interlochen Arts Academy, Northwestern University, and Yale University, where she completed her Masters in bassoon performance in 1992. She continued post-graduate studies at the Conservatoire de Lausanne in Switzerland where she received a “Prémier Prix” in the Virtuosité class in 1996. During her years of studies, Catherine Stockwell had the opportunity to work with Robert Barris, Willard Elliot, Stephen Maxym, Roger Birnstingl, and Kim Walker.

A resident of Portugal since 1996, she works regularly with the Metropolitan Orchestra of Lisbon, the Cascais Symphony, the Cascais and Oeiras Chamber Orchestra, the Sinfonietta of Lisbon, and the Gulbenkian Orchestra as well as multiple ensembles for chamber music and early music.

Catherine Stockwell worked as professor of bassoon and of chamber music at the Academia Nacional Superior de Orquestra between 1999 and 2012. In 2016, she completed her doctorate in Music and Musicology at the University of Évora, awarded highest distinction.

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Vera Morais

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Tiago Ribeiro

Tiago Ribeiro was born in Lisbon. He started playing the cello at the age of 6 and finished his studies at the Santa Cecilia School in Lisbon with Luis Sá Pessoa. During 1993 and 1997, he received schoolarship from The Gulbenkian Foundation.

Tiago Ribeiro graduated from the High School of Music in Lisbon with Clelia Vital -cello and Irene Lima – chamber music.He has participated in several Master classes with distinguished professors such as Marcio Carneiro and Bertrand Broudier.

Tiago Ribeiro has been a member of The Portuguese Youth Orchestra. He has also played with The Gulbenkian orchestra, Lisbon Metropolitan Orchestra and Algarve Orchestra.
At the moment he is a resident musician of The Cascais and Oeiras Chamber Orchestra and a teacher at the Leiria Music School.

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Ricardo Mendes

Ricardo Mendes was born in Regengos de Monsaraz. He started his studies in Evóra Professional Music School at the age of 12 with Nikolay Lalov.

In 1998 and 1999 he won The Second and the Third Prize of The RDP Competition in Lisbon.

During 3 years he was the principal violinist of The Evora Youth Orchestra performing in countries like Mozambique, Spain and Germany.

In 1999 he finished his studies in Evora Music Schools with highest marks.

In 2000 R.M. was accepted as a trainee in The Cascais and Oeiras Chamber Orchestra.

In 2002 he became a full member of The COCO.

R.M. is a finalist of the High School of Music in Lisbon studding with António Anjos.

He is regularly playing with the Gulbenkian Orchestra and other Portuguese orchestras.

R.M. participated in several orchestral trainings such as The Youth Orchestra of Portuguese Music Schools and APROARTE Youth Orchestra.

R.M has participated in Master-class with Lydia Mordkovitch at the Music Festival in Estoril in 2000.

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Pedro Santos

Born in Paços de Ferreira, started his musical studies at Escola Profissional e Artística do Vale do Ave (Artave) where he finished in 2002 the basic course of wind instruments on the trumpet class of prof. Maciel Matos, and where he also finished the course of wind instruments on the trumpet class of prof. Vasco Faria in 2005. On the same year he joined the trumpet class of the profs. Stephen Mason and David Burt at Escola Superior de Música de Lisboa (ESML) where he graduated in 2009.

He already worked with the Artave Orchestra, the Calouste Gulbenkian Orchestra, the New Lisbon Symphonic Orchestra, the Beira Interior Orchestra, the Cascais e Oeiras Chamber Orchestra, the Algarve Orchestra and the Juvenile Symphonic Orchestra (OSJ).
On the orchestral context he already worked with conducters like António Saiote, Cesário Costa, Christopher Bochmann, Emílio de César, Ernst schelle, Jean Sebastian Bereau, Michael Zilm, Ricardo Tacuchian, Roberto Pérez e Vasco Pearce de Azevedo.
We worked with the ESML Contemporary Music Group with conducter Alberto Roque and the OSJ Contemporary Music Group with conducters Christopher Bochmann e Pedro Amaral.

Cooperated on the musical “High School Musical II” in the Tivoli Theater in 2008.
Did several work-stages with the ESML’s Wind and Symphonic Orchestras, and also with the Portuguese Symphonic Band. Performed with the ESML Trumpet Ensemble at the International Trumpet Guild anual conferences in 2007 in Massachusetts and in 2011 in Minneapolis, USA.

Attended masterclasses with prestigious trumpeters like André Henry, Christopher Martin, Eric Aubier, Fernando Rey Garcia, Hakan Hardenberger, John Aigi Hurn, Kevin Wauldron, Pierre Dutot, among others.

In 2010 won the first prize of trumpet on the superior level of the Second Albertino Lucas Luso-Galician Competition.

Teaches trumpet at the Almada Music Academy and the Cascais Music Conservatory.

Is part of the permanent staff of the Portuguese Navy Band since 2006.

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José Gato

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Tiago Paraíso

Tiago Filipe Santos Paraíso was born in Leiria, Portugal in 1983. At the age of 8 started his music education at the S.A.M.P. art school in Pousos, Leiria. He was 17 when he entered the Escola Profissional de Artes da Beira Interior to study bassoon with the teacher João Brito. After three years he was admitted to join the bassoon studio at the Instituto Jean Piaget and he graduated after studying the last two years of his academic education with teacher Eduardo Sirtori at the Évora University, Portugal.
Among the masterclasses he attended at the International Music festival and School, in Saarburg (Germany), the Summer Course in Caldas da Rainha with the teacher Hughes Kesteman, the 18th edition of Curso Internacional de Aperfeiçoamento para Jovens Músicos do INATEL in Portalegre. He participated the Bassoon Masterclasses given by Pierre Oliver Martens, Rui Lopes and Afonso Venturieri. Tiago also performed as a member of the workshop of Orquestra Sinfónica do Alto Minho, conducted by maestro Márcio Pereira and the 1st Workshop of Orquestra de Jovens Músicos conducted by Henrique Piloto and Pedro Figueiredo. He performed as an orchestra member in the Conducting Masterclasses by prestigious artists like Maestro Jean Sebastian Bérreau and Mitchell J. Fennell at the Conservatório Nacional in Lisbon.
Tiago found out about his passion for jazz when he attended the Jazz Workshops given by Prof. Pedro Moreira at the Instituto Piaget. Since then, he is been working and experimenting to explore the unusual expressive potential of the Bassoon in Jazz.
Tiago was often invited to be a part of several professional and semiprofessional ensembles like the European Union Wind Orchestra, the Orquestra Sinfónica Nacional of São Carlos, Orquestra Clássica do Sul, Sinfonietta de Lisboa, played as 1st bassoon at the Orquestra da Companhia de Ópera Portuguesa, Ensemble Moderno that belongs to the Conservatório Nacional in Lisbon, Orquestra da Escola Profissional da Beira Interior, Institute Piaget Orchestra, Nossa Senhora do Cabo Students Orchestra, Escola Superior de Música de Lisboa Orchestra, Wind Orchestra of the Conservatório Nacional de Lisboa and played at the orchestra of the musical Sweeney Todd.
As a member of these groups he performed high profile repertoire in most of the European big cities and recorded a number of CDs and concerts for the Nacional Radio RDP-Antena 2. He enjoyed working with very prestigious conductors, among them, Cesário Costa, Rui Pinheiro, Vasco Pierce Azevedo, Alberto Roque, Roberto Peres, Marko Letonja, Jan Cober, Nikolay Lalov, Christopher Bochmann, Francesco Lentini, James Liu, João Paulo Santos and Rui Massena.
He played as a soloist with the Orquestra de Câmara de Cascais e Oeiras and the Institute Piaget Orchestra.
Tiago Paraíso is every week performing in Portugal most important stages, but most frequently in Cascais as a member of the Orquestra de Câmara de Cascais e Oeiras and at Sinfónica de Cascais, where he is full member. In Lisbon, Tiago often appears with the Ensemble de Palhetas Duplas of which he is a founding member.
Passing on professional and artistic experiences to the younger ones is very important for Tiago Paraíso. He is a dedicated teacher at the Cascais and Palmela Conservatories. He has also taught an orchestral Masterclass such as 1.º Estágio de Banda Sinfónica da Beira Interior.
He is finishing the Masters in Music Teaching at Escola Superior de Música de Lisboa.

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Jean Aroutiounian

Born in Yerevan, capital of Armenia. Began studying violin at the age of 5 with his father, Gareguin Aroutiounian, giving his first recital at the age of 7. At 8 years old wins the first prize in the Young Talents of Armenia and at 9 wins the Young Performers Competition studying in the class of Villi Mokatsian, distinguished teacher at the Professional School of Tchaikovsky.
In 1990 moves to Portugal and complets the National Conservatory of Music where he was concertmaster of the main orchestra. In 2005 obtains the degree in violin at the Escola Superior Música Lisboa.
Throughout his career as a student, studied regularly with teachers such as Zakhar Bron (Reina Sofía College of Music), Boris Belkin (Maastricht Conservatory), Maxim Vengerov (Lubeck Music School), also had lessons with the conductor Rudolf Barshai and Itamar Golan (chamber music).
Has performed various recitals, concerts and festivals as a soloist and chamber music performer with a wide repertoire as concerts Tchaikovsky, Sibelius, Beethoven, Max Bruch, Mendelssohn, Mozart, Paganini, Sonatas for Violin and Piano, and several violin pieces.
Has worked with conductors such as Gustavo Dudamel, Lawrence Foster, Simone Young, Jean – Claude Casadesus, Michael Zilm, Pinchas Zukerman, Gennady Rozhdestvensky, John Axelrod, Alexander Frey, Christian Badea, Joana Carneiro, Nikolay Lalov, Osvaldo Ferreira, Pedro Neves and others.
Is one of the founding teachers of Project Orchestra Geração, teacher at the Academy of Amadores Música, often conducts master classes, workshops and orchestra courses.
Is a founding member of the Muzart Association that dedicates to the promoting and supporting of young performers.
Is a member of the Ad- Hoc String Quartet as Viola.
Since September 2013 integrates the Orchestra de Câmara Cascais Oeiras as Viola.

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Gergana Bencheva

Gergana was born on August 26th 1980 in Sofia, Bulgaria and started studying the violin at the age of five.

In 1999, she graduated from the National School of Music Liubomir Pipkov, in Sofia, with professor Julia Anguelova.

In 2003, Gergana ended her Bachelor degree in the National Academy of Music in Prof. Ginka Gichkova’s violin class and Prof. Dimitar Kozev’s chamber music class.

Whilst studying, she plays as a soloist in many Bulgarian orchestras and participated in many master-classes of violin of several professors, such as Prof. Neaman, Prof. Frishenshlager, Prof. Kisš, Prof. Minchev and other.

Gergana was a concertmaster at the New Symphony Orchestra, in Bulgaria and “Junge Europa Philharmony”, in Germany.

Between 2003 and 2005 Gergana was a trainer at the Cascais and Oeiras Chamber Orchestra (OCCO). Since September 2005, she is a resident musician of OCCO.

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Alto Patrocínio / High Patronage

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