International Jury – 2015 Edition – ANCIENT and BAROQUE REPERTOIRE section



Sebastian F. Schwarz was born in 1974 in Rostock, Germany.
He studied vocal performance in Berlin and Venice, musicology in Berlin and theater management in Venice, and has engaged in an active concert career which has taken him to some of Europe’s finest concert venues.
He has worked as a language coach for German, English and Russian productions at Teatro La Fenice in Venice and as an artists’ manager in Milan and Venice and, for several years, he taught history of music and history of Venice at university level. He also worked in the company management of the Wexford Festival Opera in Ireland and as an assistant to opera director Josef Hussek at the Staatsoper in Hamburg.
Mr. Schwarz is currently director of artistic administration and casting at Theater an der Wien in Vienna and the Artistic Director of the Pietro Antonio
Cesti International Voice Competition for Baroque Opera in Innsbruck, of
which he is co-founder.
He is also CEO and Artistic Director of the Vienna Chamber Opera, since 2012 incorporated into Theater an der Wien, for which he has founded an international ensemble of singers for opera productions and concerts at these two venues.
Furthermore, he advises various cultural institutions and festivals on programming and casting matters on a freelance basis.
Mr. Schwarz is a sought-after voice specialist and a regular member of juries
of important international voice competitions and teaches regularly in master
classes for institutions and academies across Europe and internationally.



GLORIA BANDITELLI, a mezzo-soprano from Assisi, obtained a degree in voice at the Conservatory of Music of Perugia.
In 1979, she won the “Concorso del Teatro Sperimentale” in Spoleto, debuting in “Cenerentola” by Rossini and “Dido and Aeneas” by Purcell.
Banditelli has sung in the most important Italian theatres such as La Scala, La Fenice, the Opera of Rome, the Teatro Comunale of Florence, Bologna and Modena, the Teatro Massimo in Palermo and Catania, the San Carlo Theatre in Naples, etc. under the direction of maestros like Abbado, Muti, Gavazzeni, Kleiber, Maazel, Gatti, Chailly and others.
Specialized in the Baroque repertoire, Banditelli has participated in several operas and concerts directed by maestros Savall, Curtis, Biondi, Garrido, Florio, Mc.Gegan, Clemencic, Alessandrini, Ciofini, Scimone, etc. at the Operà Garnier, Champs Eliseè and Salle Pleyel in Paris, the Teatro Real in Madrid, the Opera in Frankfurt, the Konzerthaus and Musikverein in Vienna, the Concertgebouw of Amsterdam and others.
Banditelli has participated in a number of festivals among which are the Salzburg and Edinburgh Festivals.
She has performed in recordings for RAI, Radio France, WDR (German), Swiss, Dutch and Belgian radios as well as for Emi, Decca, Harmonia Mundi, Denon Columbia, Nuova Era, Astrée, K617, Ricordi, Opus 111, Tactus and Bottega Discantica.
Banditelli has been teaching Renaissance and Baroque voice at the “G.Frescobaldi” Conservatory of Music of Ferrara and at the “Briccialdi” Institute of Terni.



Founder and artistic director of the International Festival of Baroque Opera of Beaune, which has been taking place every year in July since 1983 in the capital of the famous Bourgogne wine region, Anne Blanchard has developed a pioneering artistic policy to rediscover the Baroque opera repertoire using ancient musical instruments and focusing on the excellent quality of the productions as well as on the reconstruction and performance of unpublished works according to the latest musicological investigations.
A top-quality policy which involves both renown professionals and performers of the new generation.
A policy aiming at discovering young talented voices through auditions in France and Europe.
A policy of production and co-production for the creation of a network at a national and European level and a policy of event recording with the most important record labels boasting more than 25 productions.
For all these reasons, the Festival of Baroque Opera of Beaune is considered the landmark of opera festivals in Europe for the Baroque repertoire (the “Salzburg of Baroque” according to Diapason magazine) and it has been one of the protagonists of the “revolution of the Baroque movement” since it has largely favored the diffusion and performance of this genre in the opera houses of France and Europe.



Laurent Brunner was born in Lorraine and grew up in Verdun. He chose to study history and art history in Strasbourg and there he discovered “ancient music” and opera.
In 1990, for the one thousandth anniversary of the Cathedral, he organized a festival in Verdun starring William Christie, Philippe Herreweghe, Gerard Lesne and Marcel Pérès.
The success of this event allowed Brunner to change the festival into a season in 1991 and to merge it with that of the Théatre Municipal, of which he became the Manager in 1992.
Jean Luc Lagarce, Jérôme Savary, Hervé Niquet, Concerto Köln, Jordi Savall and Marc Minkowski have been managers of the season after him.
In 1996, Brunner managed the “Scène Nationale” of Forbach and the “Est Mosellan” working in 23 municipalities of the Lorraine Coalfield region, which he enlivened and called Le Carreau (mine square).
He invested time and money in an old underground tunnel (Petite Rosselle) to stage events in it; he increased the offer of classical music adding new collaborations with Reinhardt Goebel, Ton Koopman, Laurence Equilbey, the Saint Petersburg Philarmonic Orchestra, Barbara Hendricks, etc.; he made ballet the flagship of a new opening attitude towards the audience (Decouflé, Preljocaj, De Kersmaeker and Flamand); he supported the avant-garde (Roméo Castellucci, Jan Fabre, Jean Michel Bruyère and Alain Platel) and he created a French-German cooperation network by staging shows of new Berlin artists (Castorf and Ostermeier).
In 2002, Brunner became the manager of the “Perspectives” festival in Saarbrücken (Germany).
Jean Jacques Aillagon, appointed Minister of Culture in May 2002, asked Brunner to become a member of his Cabinet as a Technical Advisor of the Minister responsible for live shows.
At the end of Jean Jacques Aillagon’s term, Laurent Brunner was appointed Representative of Culture at the French Embassy in Berlin.
There, he organized the “Art France Berlin” in 2006 and then, in 2007, “France en scène” (a live show of 40 events in a month starring Patrice Chereau, The Opera Ballet of Lyon, Katerine, etc.).
In September 2007, Brunner was appointed President of the Palace of Versailles by Jean Jacques Aillagon and Manager of the “Château de Versailles Spectacles” private branch. Thanks to a big effort, the audience increased by over 150% and 1,530,000 tickets were sold in 2014.
Brunner reopened the Royal Opera, which since 2009, has proposed a season of about 70 events and has produced the great exhibitions of contemporary art of Versailles: Koons, Murakami, Penone and Kapoor in 2015.
“Château de Versailles Spectacles” has widely increased the range of its offer including opera and Baroque music. Alagna, Gardiner, Minkowski, Dessay, Netrebko, Christie, Bartoli and Lang Lang are regular guests in the most famous rooms of the Palace (the Royal Opera, the Chapel and the Hall of Mirrors) but they also star in events in the open air in other parts of Versailles such as “Nuits de l’Orangerie” (Nights at the Orangerie).
Today, “Château de Versailles Spectacles” is a company with a budget of about 15 million euros a year and it does not receive any public funding. It employs 30 people permanently and up to 400 people including temporary personnel for the big projects of the summer season for a total amount of 200 shows a year.



Luca Giardini studied modern violin with Carlo Chiarappa and specialized in the Baroque repertoire with Catherine Mackintosh, Monica Huggett and Anton Steck.
In 1998, he started an uninterrupted professional career with several ensembles such as Europa Galante,Accademia Bizantina, Il Giardino Armonico, Complesso Barocco, Ensemble Zefiro, Modo Antiquo, Il Rossignolo, la Venexiana, I Barocchisti, The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenement, Al Ayre Espanol, Ensemble Matheus, La Cetra-Basel, Collegium 1704 and Ensemble Baroque de Limoges.
He teaches Baroque violin at the “B. Maderna” Conservatory of Music of Cesena and at the “A. Boito” Conservatory of Music of Parma.
Giardini has always been deeply involved in chamber music and since 2011 he has been a member of the Albada quartet.
Luca Giardini plays several historical violins among which is a Don Nicola Amati (Bologna 1720) and he owns some original bows.
In 2013, he founded the Sezione Aurea ensamble, who debuted in the “Concentus Moraviae” season.
Then, the group arranged L. Rossi’s opera “Il Palazzo Incantato”, directed by Anagoor for the Sagra Malatestiana in Rimini.
In 2014, Sezione Aurea participated in the performance of H. Purcell’s dramatick-opera “King Arthur”, directed by Motus, and later staged again at the Argentina Theatre in Rome during the Europa Festival.
Another repeat performance is following in October 2015 at the Manzoni Theatre for the inauguration of the “Musica Insieme” season.
Giardini has recently published a recording of Ignazio Cirri’s “Sonate per violino e cembalo”.