Berkshire Choral International

Heinz Ferlesch

Born in Lower Austria, Heinz Ferlesch has successfully established himself as a conductor of his baroque orchestra Barucco as well as a longtime choirmaster of Wiener Singakademie.

He studied at the Anton Bruckner Conservatory Linz and at the University of Music and Performing Arts with Herwig Reiter and Johannes Prinz. At the age of 27 Ferlesch was appointed Artistic Director of Wiener Singakademie by the Vienna Konzerthaus, the youngest Artistic Director in the choir´s history.

Within his career he has worked with conductors as Georges Prêtre, Valery Gergiev, Gustavo Dudamel, Sir Simon Rattle, Franz Welser-Möst, Kent Nagano, Fabio Luisi, Adam Fischer, Bertrand de Billy, Ton Kopmann, Helmuth Rilling and Simone Young.

Engagements of the Wiener Singakademie took him – besides periodic performances at Vienna Konzerthaus – to London, Zurich, Budapest, Venedig and New York. Close collaboration with orchestras like Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, Vienna Symphony Orchestra, Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra and Zurich Opera House Orchestra have shaped the musical development of Wiener Singakademie and its Artistic Director.

In 2004, Ferlesch founded his orchestra Barucco and since then he has increased his appearances as an orchestra conductor. Barucco, a young ensemble consisting of international baroque specialists, focuses mainly on the music of 18th century. Since its foundation the orchestra has been a regular guest at Vienna Konzerthaus and it is the orchestra in residence of the festival Vokalwoche Melk.

Performing with young Austrian soloists and the Wiener Singakademie is one of the main concerns of the orchestra. In 2009 Barucco was invited to perform at the International Baroque Festival at the monastery of Melk. Various CD recordings and broadcasts show the wide range of the orchestra´s repertoire; in 2004 the orchestra recorded music by Antonio Vivaldi for the Austrian broadcasting station ORF, and in 2006 a live recording of Handel´s Judas Maccabaeus was released by the ORF Edition of Ancient Music. In 2009 a recording of Handel´s oratorio Alexander´s Feast was published.

Ferlesch also works extensively with the choir Ad Libitum, which he founded in 1993. This mixed choir focuses on a capella music and has performed at Festspielhaus St. Pölten, the Brucknerhaus Linz and various festivals such as. Europäischer Kultursommer Aspach, Passauer Konzertwinter and Kultursommer St. Paul. Concert tours took the choir to England, Italy, Greece and Germany.

Conductor Ferlesch and his ensembles have been awarded various national and international prizes. In 2007 he was awarded the highly respected Ferdinand-Grossmann prize. In 2009 he was awarded the Erwin Ortner Prize in honor of his activities promoting choir music in Lower Austria.

Ferlesch has been a guest conductor at Berkshire Choral International and also member of the jury of several national and international choir competitions. In 2010 he was invited to conduct Antonin Dvořák’s Stabat Mater in Paris in cooperation with the Choer de Radio France. Since 2002 he has taught at the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna. In 2013 Ferlesch won the Golden Badge of Honour of the Municipality of St. Valentin in the category of music.

Works conducted at BCI

  • Handel, Judas Maccabaeus, 2010
  • Rheinberger, Kyrie and Gloria, 2008 Mondsee
  • Lauridsen, O Magnum Mysterium, 2008 Mondsee
  • Duruflé, Ubi Caritas, 2008 Mondsee
  • Bruckner, Os Justi, Total Pulchra es maria, 2008 Mondsee
  • Beethoven, Mass in C, 2008 Salzburg
  • Schubert, Mass in B - flat, 2002 Salzburg
  • Mendelssohn, Hymne, 2002 Mondsee
  • Kodaly, Pange Lingua, 2002 Mondsee
  • Fauré, Cantique de Jean Racine, 2002 Mondsee
  • Busto, Ave Maria, 2002 Mondsee
  • Britten, Jubilate Deo, 2002 Mondsee
  • Brahms, Geistliches Lied, 2002 Mondsee