- Started in
- Musician type
- Harpsichord, Organ, Clavichord, Historical percussion
- Host institution
- Leiden University
- Personal website
- Chile Germany
The historic keyboards specialist from Chile, resident in Basel, Switzerland, started at an early age an international career. By age 20 she had already played in the main concert-halls of more than ten North- and South-American countries, including Teatro Colón de Buenos Aires Argentina, Kimmel Center of Philadelphia and Teatro Municipal do São Paulo. To the present, she has performed as a soloist and with renowned ensembles in Central Europe, Scandinavia, Great Britain, North- and South-America, as well as being invited to give several courses and master-classes.
As a child, Catalina developed a strong interest in music, history, science, visual arts and film. She took on the piano at age 7, and while studying at the conservatory, she was awarded with a full scholarship to study harpsichord with Dr. Lionel Party at the Curtis Institute of Philadelphia (where she shared the classroom with some of today's leading classical musicians and conductors).
By getting into early music, she found the right combination of technical skill and critical knowledge she was aiming to combine. This is what took her to move to Europe and continue her harpsichord studies with Prof. Robert Hill in Freiburg, Germany, and Andrea Marcon at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis, Switzerland.
It was in Basel where Catalina found a place to discover things beyond the classification of herself: a harpsichord performer. She encountered Iranian Percussion, and enchanted by the richness of its sounds started to study with the Iranian Master Madjid Khaladj and other percussionists. She taught herself organ. At the same time she attended theory classes with Crawford Young at the Medieval Department of the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis, and fascinated by the tuning systems, history and constellation of sounds of medieval music, decided to study with Corina Marti and becoming the 1st "Master in Medieval Keyboards".
During this period Mrs. Vicens did not leave the harpsichord behind. She won the 1st Prize at the "Fritz Neumeyer" International Competition (with harpsichord and forte-piano). She deepen her knowledge and experience in Contemporary Music Performance (with historical keyboards) at the Musik Hochschule Basel under the tutelage of Jürg Henneberger and Mike Svoboda. She also undertook individual research on the Renaissance repertoires for harpsichord and organ from Italy, England and Switzerland, taking her to pursue a PhD degree at University of Leiden, The Netherlands, and the Orpheus Institute, Ghent, Belgium. Catalina is supported by the Keyboard Charitable Trust (US/UK).
This wide view on music, sound and history has taken Catalina Vicens to create Servir Antico, ensemble devoted to the music and poetry of the humanist period, with whom she wants to express her artistic creativity, skill and vision, and share the experience with esteemed and respected colleagues as well as with the audience.
This research project seeks to understand the nature, characteristics and function of the secular vocal intabulations and dances found in Italian printed keyboard sources in the 16th century.