Prof. Mayer Barbara


Barbara Mayer (born in Schwabmünchen, Southern Germany) received her first piano lessons at the age of 5, already showing a great talent for improvising and composing at such an early age. At age 14, she made her piano debut in the “Concert for Young Talents of the Region of Augsburg”, where she performed Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy’s Piano Concerto n. 1 in G minor.
She pursued her musical studies in composition, piano, and piano pedagogy, at the Universities of Music Mozarteum Salzburg and Anton-Bruckner-Universität Linz with Prof. Adriana Hölszky, Prof. Cordelia Höfer-Teutsch and Prof. Dr. Margit Haider-Dechant.

In 2008/09 Barbara Mayer was awarded a scholarship by the OEAD (Austrian Academic Exchange Service), which allowed her to further her education in composition studies at the Escola Superior de Musica de Lisboa in Lisbon, Portugal.

A year later, in 2010, the Philharmonic Orchestra of the City of Augsburg commissioned her with the composition of an orchestral work inspired by themes of Richard Wagner’s “Tristan und Isolde”. Her project culminated in March 2011 with the premiere of her concerto “Tristanesk” for piano, percussion and orchestra, performed by Barbara Mayer herself and the Philarmonic Orchestra of Augsburg.

After successfully completing both her Bachelor and Master studies with the highest honours, she is currently working on her PhD in Musicology at Mozarteum University in Salzburg.

She has continued to follow her artistic impulses in a wide array of Masterclasses and composition seminars, such as Vienna Master Classes, Masterclasses “Jeunesses Musicales” Weikersheim in Germany, Sommercampus Hochschule für Musik Rostock, Allegro Vivo International Chamber Music Festival Horn in Lower Austria, and Festival-Estival Annecy in France, taught by highly acclaimed composers and pianists of the likes of Anatol Ugorsky, Alexander Jenner, Filippo Faes, Konstantin Bogino, Marialena Fernandes, Roger Muraro, Masaaki Hirasawa, Klaus Huber, Ruth Zechlin, Theo Brandmüller, among others.

Throughout her career, a great number of prestigious institutions have recognized Barbara Mayer’s talent with their scholarships, namely the International Richard Wagner Foundation for the Bayreuth Festival, the OEAD, the Mozarteum University and the Federal Ministry of Science and Research.
Her accomplishments in piano and composition competitions include but are not limited to:
1st Prize for Piano in the “International Music Competition Paul Harris”, Verbania (Italy);
1st Prize (“Most distinguished”) in the International Composition Competition and 1st Prize in the International Piano Competition of the “Ibla Grand Prize World Music Competition”, Ragusa/New York (Italy/USA) ;
Special Distinction for her piano composition of Franz Liszt’s “Paraphrase de Rigoletto“ with improvisation sections (selected for its potential performance in Carnegie Hall during the winners` concert tour);
String Quartet Award for her “3 Miniatures for String Quartet“ in the Mozarteum Composition Competition, including the performance of her piece by the prestigious Austrian Ensemble for Contemporary Music (OENM).

Barbara Mayer is also the first female winner of the Young Artists’ Award for Composition of the City of Augsburg in their 50 years of history. The jury remarked:
“Barbara Mayer shows an astounding professionalism in her compositions, and proves to have the necessary confidence to sucessfully navigate the current state of affairs in composition. She effortlessly combines structural clarity with a wide range of subtle tonalities, creating  great atmospheric density as well as intense, sensuous sound experiences. In her work she succeds in reconciling elements percieved as irreconciliable, and bridges the gaps between styles and genres, bursting with ideas and expressivity. Her eagerness to experiment shows her outstanding talent to integrate non-musical methods and elements. We foresee a sensational artistic career ahead of her.”

Barbara Mayer’s compositional Œuvre consists of solo works for various instruments, chamber music (with and without vocals), electronic pieces and compositions for orchestra.

Her compositions have already been performed both by herself on piano and by prominent orchestras and ensembles on festivals like “Young Generation Festival of ZKM Karlsruhe, Germany; the 50th Electronic Studio Festival of Mozarteum University; the Event and Concert Series “Retrospektiv und aktuell“ H2 Centre for Contemporary Art Augsburg, Festival-Estival Annecy in France, among many others.

Concerts, commissioned works, composition performances and musicological activities in Austria and abroad in France, Italy, Portugal, Germany, Czech Republic, Brazil etc. endorse her musical career.


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