Markéta Dvořáková(1974), mezzosoprano. She studied Pedagogical Faculty at Charles University in Prague, later on singing at Conservatory in Teplice. She became a founding member of medieval ensemble Schola Specialis in 2000; one year later she started her solo career. She sang on festivals Ars Carmelis Katowice 2001, Ecumenical festival Berlin 2003, Smetanova Litomyšl 2003, Early Music Český Krumlov 2003, Tribuna komorní písně (Tribune of Chamber Music in Pilsen) 2002, 2004 and 2006, Górnośląski Festiwal 2003, Brno 2004 and 2005, Bánská Bystrica 2004 and 2006 and others.
As a concert singer she has in her repertoire compositions by J.D.Zelenka, G.B.Pergolesi, J.S.Bach, G.F.Handel, W.A.Mozart, A.Dvořák, B.Martinů, and other composers of 20th and 21st century. She is a soloist of Atlantis Orchestra and a chamber ensemble Atlantis Collegium.
Markéta Dvořáková is a sought-after interpreter of contemporary music – many composers write specially for her: Vlastislav Matoušek, Markéta Dvořáková (coincidence of names), Bohuslav Řehoř, Ivo Medek, Miroslav Pudlák and others. She sings compositions of experimental world authors e.g. John Cage, Giacinto Scelsi, Morton Feldman, and Steve Reich. She occupies by vocal improvisation. Main roles were written for her in operas by Vlastislav Matoušek “8.cesta” (2001), Ivo Medek “Vrač” (2002) and in opera comedy by Miroslav Pudlák “Ve stínu klobásy” (2002).
She has performed in Archa theatre in Prague since 2002 (performance “Marné tázání nebes” directed by Jan Antonín Pitínský and “Čajovna KarMa” directed by Jana Svobodová). In 2004 she created main role in opera “MrTVÁ?”by Ivo Medek and Markéta Dvořáková (coincidence of names).
In 2006 she took part in rediscovering and performing the song work by Czech-German composer Václav Jindřich Vejta to his 200th birth anniversary. By her concerts she also contributes considerably to rediscovering of song work by Miloslav Kabeláč and other composers of after-war generation. Together with baritone Petr Matuszek she has rehearsed concert program “Czech medieval spiritual songs” with which they successfully perform on festivals as well as independent concerts here and abroad.
She has got recordings on CD (Czech Medieval Songs), in Czech Radio (song works by Josef Bohuslav Foerster and Jaroslav Ježek) and in Czech Television.
Petr Matuszek was born on 1st of December 1962 in Roudnice nad Labem. He is married and has three children. He currently lives with his family in a small village by Prague.
He graduated at Teplice conservatory, domain viola and singing (1985). He was educated in singing by former solo singer of Ústí opera doc. Jaromír Vavruška, later by solo singer of National theatre, tenor Jan Hlavsa. After finishing military service in Army art ensemble he started to work as solo opera singer in Slezské divadlo Opava (1988). One year later he became solo singer of Ústí opera where he works until now. He performed in many opera, operetta as well as musical roles.
He regularly cooperates with other opera scenes as well. He likes to think back on his activity in Brno National theatre (e.g. in Prokofjev´s opera War and Peace – the role of prince Bolkonský and the role of Ludovico in experimental Rocco´s direction of Glass´s opera The Beauty and The Beast). He adds to his favorite roles also Rigolleto from the Verdi´s opera of the same name, Valentino (Faust and Markéta), Bohouš (Jacobin) and Harašta (The Cunning Little Vixen).
Extra-theatre activities of Petr Matuszek are very numerous and various.
Big part of his work is taken by concert activity. He performed on different festivals here and abroad (Pražské jaro, Musica iudaica, Contrasts, Exposition of New Music Lvov, Janáčkův máj Ostrava, Ars Cameralis Katowice, Mnichov, Berlín, Amsterdam, Smetanova Litomyšl, Górnośląski Festiwal, Warszawska Jesień). He regularly sings with prominent Czech orchestras (FOK, Czech Radio Symphony Orchestra, Janáček Philharmonic Orchestra Ostrava, The North Bohemia Philharmonic of Teplice and Moravian Philharmonic Orchestra, Olomouc).
He belongs to promoters of contemporary music production; many Czech and world authors write their works directly for him: apart from others he played main roles in operas by Vlastislav Matoušek (8.cesta), in opera comedy by Miroslav Pudlák (Klobása) and by Ivo Medek (Vrač). In 2004 he had premiere in Prague Stavovské divadlo in two other operas written for him directly: a work of already mentioned composer M.Pudlák “Sasíci v Čechách” and the opera by M.Dvořáková and I.Medek “MrTVÁ?”. In 1990 he became a co-founder of association for new music “Ateliér 90” and in 1993 he was accepted as a member of Umělecká beseda.
He created many musical-acoustic experiments; in the mid 90´s he was concerned by acoustic space (CD “Na prahu světla” at company Happy Music Production), later he started to occupy with studying of extra-European ethnical vocal techniques: traditional singing of Sri Lanka, Japan, diaphonic (means aliquot) singing including traditional throaty singing (so called “khuumii”) and others. He later applied aliquot singing not only into a frame of “ethno-musical” projects but also into his interpretation practice of contemporary experimental compositions (Cage, Scelsi, and others). Out of this work arose a unique author´s project “Solo for voice” (with subtitle “vocal theatre for one singer”) within which he sings and varies pieces composed by contemporary authors and vocal improvisations. In 2002 “vocal theatre” broadened by mezzo-soprano Markéta Dvořáková and so the project “Solo for two voices” was created. They perform this project regularly on world festivals of contemporary music here, in Slovakia, Poland and Germany.
Matuszek´s activities beside the sphere of so called “serious” music are interesting as well: Since 1998 he played in alternative rock band Yamabu, where he sang and played the violin and Egyptian darbuka. One year later he was already invited as a co-player by different bands and artists e.g. Zapomenutý orchestr Země Snivců, singer of Peking opera Feng-Jün Song, shakuhachi player Vlastislav Matoušek, Jaroslav Kořán (drums), Tomáš Reindl (tabla), Jiří Melzer (deejeridoo) and others.
Petr Matuszek occupies also with pedagogic activities. He taught singing for several years at Conservatory of Jaroslav Ježek in Prague and at Conservatory in Teplice. Last year he lectured a seminar at University of J.A.Purkyně presenting to students musical production of Terezín ghetto “Music of Terezín authors”. Nowadays he lectures a course “Chapters of ethno music and organology”. At many different places he leads and lectures courses of above mentioned aliquot singing and contemporary interpreting practice.
Important is also his musicology activity: he writes specialized analytic articles on contemporary music, he contributes to English magazine Czech Music London and you may find his articles in Czech periodicals as well: Hudební rozhledy, His voice, Ticho and Harmonie. He attends regularly musicological conferences (e.g. within festival FORFEST). Within the framework of his musical-research work he assembled song work of Jaroslav Ježek, Vilém Blodek, Jan Bedřich Kittle and so called “Terezín” authors (Viktor Ullmann, Pavel Haas and Hans Krása).
Petr Matuszek recorded 10 profile CDs for companies Supraphon, Indies, Deutsche Harmonia Mundi (Germany), Symposion (Italy), ArcoDiva, Panton, Rosa Classic, Studio Matouš and others. His musical tracks are also in Radio Leipzig, he records for Czech Radio and Czech Television. He has become a member of board of Nadace Českého hudebního fondu in 2007 and in 2008 he was appointed to grant commission of Ministry of Culture of Czech Republic. He was twice awarded a 2nd price Classic for his interpretation activity. At the beginning of this year he created under a leadership of conductor of Ústí opera Milan Kaňák main role in an unique recording of newly found opera by Bohuslav Martinů “Le jour de bonté” (The Day of Charity, published by ArcoDiva), that has already got a number of awards.
Cooperation of Markéta Dvořáková and Petr Matuszek
dates back to 2001 when they co-founded ensemble for medieval music Schola Specialis. One year later they already performed independently with the program ... (on CD CD Deutsche Harmonia Mundi). Their interpretation is built on naturaly harmonized duet and common musical sentiment.
In the years that followed their common projects enlarged a lot in genre and nowadays their repertoir varies from folk and medieval singnigs, common clasical song recitals (Ravel, Mahler, Schubert, Schumann ad. – together with the pianist Roman Pallas), through vocal experiments, free improvizations to author´s theatre. Some of contemporary composers write their works especially for them.