(Submitted by ISCM – SWISS SECTION)
Extraordinary diversity describes the composer and multi-instrumentalist Ulrike Mayer-Spohn (b. 1980) who plays the recorder (with a focus on contemporary music), as well as historical string instruments (fiddle and Baroque violin). She studied composition and audio design with Erik Oña at the Studio of Electronic Music, Academy of Music, Basel, beginning to compose in 2007, and receiving commissions from the festival Forum Valais and the international New MusicDays, Shanghai. Her work has been performed by the Stuttgart Vocal soloists, Ensemble Phoenix Basel, Vertigo, DissonArt, L’Arsenale, cool a cappella (1st Prize world choir games 2008) and her own ensemble Ums’ n Jip in Switzerland, France, Greece, Italy, Russia, Australia, the USA and China, premiered under the baton of Beat Furrer, Mark Foster, Tsung Yeh, Jürg Henneberger and Filippo Perocco and broadcast by the Swiss radio. She was awarded the 1st Prize in the Walter Ferrato composition contest in Savona 2017, the 1st Prize in the Weimarer Frühjahrstage für Zeitgenössische Musik composition contest 2017, the 1st Prize in the London Ear Festival composition contest 2016, the 2nd Prize in the composition competition Culturescapes 2010, 2nd Prize in the composition competition at the Bern music festival 2011, the Scholarship Award for 2011 at the Music Village Mount Pelion in Greece and the Call for Scores Award L’Arsenale Treviso, Italy 2011. In the ensemble Ums’ n Jip she has undertaken research in the field of musical theater (chamber operas One, Two, Three, Four, Five), live electronic music and sound spacialization. She studied recorder with Ulrike Mauerhofer at the Musikhochschule Karlsruhe, with Conrad Steinmann and Corina Marti at the Schola Cantorum Basel before specializing in contemporary music and studying with Dorothea Winter at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague. From 2009-11 she studied for a specialized master’s degree in contemporary performance at the HSM in Basel supervised by Jürg Henneberger, Marcus Weiss and Mike Svoboda and has taken masterclasses with Marion Verbruggen, Peter van Heyghen, Sebastien Marq and Gerd Lünenbürger. She studied baroque violin and viola with Martina Graulich and David Plantier and fiddle with Randal Cook in Basel. Ulrike Mayer-Spohn works with internationally leading composers and annually plays more than 20 world premieres dedicated to her, which she has recorded for the radio as well as VDE Gallo and col legno on CD. Together with the Swiss composer and singer Javier
Hagen, she established the experimental new music duo Ums `N Jip for voice, recorder and electronics, which, alongside the Ensemble Modern, Intercontemporain and Kronos is one of the most active ensembles worldwide and in 2011 won the prestigious MusiquePro scholarship. Since 1999, Ulrike Mayer-Spohn has also performed as a recorder player, violinist, violist and fiddle player in specialized early music ensembles such as the Amsterdam Barok Compagnie, Freitagsakademie, Collegium Musicum Stuttgart, La Chapelle Ancienne, Musica Poetica, Muscadin and La Morra and has performed in Germany, China, the Netherlands, France, Spain, Italy and Switzerland.
fKFW is a 2020 composition for mixed ensemble which received its world premiere during the Festival Forum Wallis in a performance by the Klangforum Wien together with her duo Ums `N Jip on 12 August 2020.