About 

Michael Ostrzyga has gained international reputation as a composer of choral music in particular, being commissioned by festivals like the Schleswig Holstein Musik Festival and renowned performers around the globe like the Finnish YL Male Voice Choir (Ylioppilaskunnan Laulajat), the Vienna Chamber Choir, latvian Youth Choir „Kamēr…“, via-nova-chor Munich, the Harvard Summer Chorus, and Chamber Choir Consono.

Upcoming Projects & Performing

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  • Michael Ostrzyga
  • michael@ostrzyga.de
  • Collegium musicum
    Universität zu Köln
    50923 Köln

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The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all art and science.

Albert Einstein

Short Biography

Michael Ostrzyga, known in particular for his choral music, was commissioned by the Schleswig Holstein Musik Festival, the World Symposion on Choral Music (2020 in Auckland, NZ), the Harvard University and renowned performers around the globe like the Finnish YL Male Voice Choir (Ylioppilaskunnan Laulajat), Latvian Youth Choir „Kamēr…“, and Kammerchor Stuttgart. Performers include the Raschèr Saxophone Quartet, Jeaner Philharmonic Orchestra, Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Concerto Köln, New Dublin Voices, Australian Chamber Choir, CHORWERK RUHR and MDR-Rundfunkchor.

Besides, he is the Music Director at University of Cologne, where he currently leads the Collegium Musicum, an organization housing the university’s major musical ensembles and serves as conductor of Choirs and Orchestras. As a guest conductor, he collaborated with ensembles like Boston Modern Orchestra Projekt, San Diego Choral Scholars, Bochumer Symphoniker, Neue Philharmonie Westfalen, Musikfabrik, and Kölner Vokalsolisten and appeared in festivals like Acht Brücken. He has also regularly commissioned and premiered numerous new works by composers such as Martin Herchenröder, Friedrich Jaecker, Jan Masanetz and Anno Schreier.

Long Biography

Michael Ostrzyga has gained international reputation as a composer of choral music in particular, being commissioned by the Schleswig Holstein Musik Festival, the World Symposion on Choral Music (2020 in Auckland, NZ), the Harvard University and renowned performers around the globe like the Finnish YL Male Voice Choir (Ylioppilaskunnan Laulajat), the Vienna Chamber Choir, Latvian Youth Choir „Kamēr…“, via-nova-chor Munich, Kammerchor Stuttgart, and Chamber Choir Consono. 

His works are performed by ensembles like the Rheinisches Klavierduo, the Raschèr Saxophone Quartet, Neues Rheinisches Kammerorchester, Jeaner Philharmonic Orchestra, Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Concerto Köln, New Dublin Voices, Australian Chamber Choir, Swedish choirs Kammarkören Pro Musica, Allmänna Sången and S:t Jacobs Vokalensemble, CHORWERK RUHR and MDR-Rundfunkchor.

The premier of his a cappella work IUPPITER was awarded the Carl-Orff Prize during the Chamber Choir Competition in Marktoberdorf in 2007. His internationally acclaimed collection of piano miniatures, “Der singende Wind”, published by Breitkopf & Härtel in 2010, received the award “Best Edition 2011.”

Besides, he is the Music Director at University of Cologne, where he currently leads the Collegium Musicum, an organization housing the university’s major musical ensembles. Serving as conductor of the Symphony Orchestra, Choir, and Chamber Choir, he has appeared in concerts in the Cologne area, as well as abroad and in several national and international festivals. Developing partnerships with organizations and creative artists of all kinds and launching the concert series Universitätskonzerte when he took his duties in 2008, he firmly established the Collegium Musicum at Cologne University as an important and acclaimed cultural constitution.

As a guest conductor, he collaborated with ensembles like Boston Modern Orchestra Projekt, San Diego Choral Scholars, Bochumer Symphoniker, Neue Philharmonie Westfalen, Musikfabrik, Neues Rheinisches Kammerorchester, The Albany Consort, and Kölner Vokalsolisten and appears in festivals like Acht Brücken. As a formerly active pianist, he co-founded the chamber music ensemble Sforzato presenting extraordinary concerts combining music of all eras and regions. Throughout all of these various positions, he has also regularly commissioned and premiered numerous new works by composers such as Michael Gees, Martin Herchenröder, Friedrich Jaecker, Jan Masanetz, Anno Schreier, and Gerhard Stäbler.

Ostrzyga was born in Castrop-Rauxel, North Rhine-Westphalia in Germany, where he was initially trained in piano, organ, and choral activities by Bruno Zaremba before studying conducting with renowned conductor Marcus Creed, composition with Friedrich Jaecker, and piano with Peter Degenhardt.

German Biography

Michael Ostrzyga, Dirigent und Komponist, ist Leiter des Collegium musicum sowie Dirigent von Chören und Orchestern der Universität zu Köln seit 2008. Er hat als Dirigent projektweise u.a. mit den San Diego Choral Scholars, dem Boston Modern Orchestra Project, der Musikfabrik, den Bochumer Symphonikern und der Neuen Philharmonie Westfalen zusammengearbeitet. Sein Repertoire reicht von mittelalterlichen Gesängen bis hin zur Sinfonik Mahlers und Neuester Musik, darunter zahlreiche Uraufführungen, u.a. von Martin Herchenröder, Friedrich Jaecker, Jan Masanetz, Anno Schreier, Gerhard Stäbler und Manfred Trojahn. Viele Werke hat er selbst in Auftrag gegeben.

Kompositionsaufträge erhielt er u.a. vom Schleswig Holstein Musik Festival, der Harvard University, dem 12. World Symposion on Choral Music 2020 in Auckland (Neuseeland) sowie von zahlreichen Ensembles wie dem YL Male Voice Choir (Finnland), Kamer… (Lettland), El Leon de Oro (Spanien) und dem Kammerchor Stuttgart (Deutschland). Zu Interpretierenden seiner Werke zählen neben vielen anderen das Raschèr Saxophon Quartet, die Jenaer Philharmonie, das Neue Rheinische Kammerorchester, Concerto Köln sowie zahlreiche Chöre weltweit, darunter der MDR-Rundfunkchor, CHORWERK RUHR, Allmänna Sången, New Dublin Voices und der Australian Chamber Choir.

Upcoming projects

Mode Records, New York released Friedrich Jaecker: paradis, available now on CD and streaming services. Program includes 33 minute long work „Harry’s Dream“ for 33 glasses and voices, performed by University of Cologne Chamber Choir under my direction.

My completion of Mozart’s to be released on CD by Coviello Classics due 2020, performed by ChorWerk Ruhr, Concerto Köln, soloists Gabriela Scherer (Soprano), Anke Vondung (Alto), Tilman Lichdi (Tenor) and Tobias Berndt (Bass) conducted by Florian Helgath.

 

Also, music will be published by Bärenreiter in 2020. 

Arrangements of christmas songs „Still, still, still“ and „Kling Glöckchen“ for the MDR children’s choir with members of the MDR Symphony Orchestra to be published on CD in autumn 2019.

MDR-Rundfunkchor will perform my Saturn on November 15th in Peterskirche Leipzig as part of their Nachtgesang concert series. Howard Arman, conductor.

I am invited to the 12th World Symposion on Choral Music 2020 in Auckland, New Zealand to composer a new multi-movement a cappella work.

Commissions

New work for chorus a cappella and overtone soloist Anna Maria Hefele commissioned by Kammerchor Stuttgart.

All Winter long for male voice choir (TTBB) and Saxophone for the Sonux Ensemble conducted by Hans-Joachim Lustig, to be premiered on 2019. 

Mariposa, eventually a three-movement-work for chorus a cappella with texts by Homero Aridjis for chamber choir Consonoconducted by Harald Jers, to be premiered in 2019.

 

New work for brass quintet commissioned by Navus Brass for 2020/2021 season.

 

New work for orchestra, commissioned by das junge orchester NRW conducted by Ingo Ernst Reihl, for 2020/2021 season.

 

New work for two choirs celebrating Beethoven’s 250th birthday commissioned by DialogFelder e.V. for Voci di Fuoco and University Choir at University at Economics Katowice.

Primero sueño (“First Dream”) for soloists, chorus and large orchestra. Full-length setting of Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz‘ poem combined with fragments of her letters. Commissioned by the Harvard Choruses and the Boston Modern Orchestra Project for 2021/2022 season.

Performing 

 

On a regular basis I am working with the Kölner Vokalsolisten and Fabian Hemmelmann.

In recent years conducting and chorus master duties included projects as part of festivals like Brühler Schlosskonzerte and Acht Brücken, like preparing the Kölner Vokalsolisten for performances of world premieres by Manfred Trojahn (with ensemble modern) and of Passagio by Luciano Berio (with ensemble intercontemporain) as well as conducting Feldman’s Rothko Chapel and Ligeti’s vocal works. For the Lab.Oratorium project in 2019 with composer  Philippe Manoury, Gürzenich-Orchester Köln and IRCAM I was chorus master for the assembled Lab.Chor.

Additionally, I was artictic director for almost 12 years of the http://www.oratorienchor-bruehl.de presenting works such as Haydn’s Creation, Mendelssohn’s Paulus and Elias, Bach’s Johannespassion, Verdi’s Reqiem and Brahms‘ Ein Deutsches Requiem.

As Music Director at University of Cologne most of the concerts I am involved in as performer are part of projects and programs of the Collegium musicum, a department I am head of.

The current program of the Collegium musicum is available here:

http://www.collmus.uni-koeln.de/konzerte.html

To stay tuned about forthcoming concerts follow the Collegium musicum at University of Cologne on Facebook: