56th International Vocal Competition ’s-Hertogenbosch (IVC)


  • Bo Skovhus (baritone) - Jury President
  • Sophie Koch (mezzo-soprano)
  • Errollyn Wallen (composer)
  • Stefan Vladar (conductor - pianist)
  • Nino Gvetadze (pianist)
  • Hans Eijsackers (pianist)

Bo Skovhus

Bo Skovhus
Jury President

Bo Skovhus studied at the Aarhus Music Institute, the Royal Opera Academy in Copenhagen and in New York. Significant engagements in his career were Reimann's »Lear« at the Paris Opera, and Beckmesser in »Meistersinger« at the Bastille and at the Wagner Festival in Budapest. In addition, Titus in »Bérénice« by Michael Jarrell at the Paris Opera under the direction of Philippe Jordan, as well as in Dresden in the role of Mandryka in »Arabella«. He also sang the title role in »Wozzeck« at the Deutsche Oper am Rhein and Dr. Schön in »Lulu« at the Vienna State Opera, followed by Šiškov in "From a House of the Dead" at the Bavarian State Opera, Jean-Charles in "The Raft of the Medusa" (Werner Henze) in Amsterdam, and the title roles in "Karl V." (Ernst Krenek) at the Bavarian State Opera, »Lear« at the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino and »Eugen Onegin« at the Hamburg State Opera. He recently performed as Ryuji in Henze's "Das Verratene Meer" at Vienna State Opera, Hamburg State Opera as Eisenstein/FLEDERMAUS, Hamburg State Opera Berlin as Jaroslav Prus / VEC MAKROPULOS, in Boston and at Carnegie Hall in concert as WOZZECK, at the Cuvilliestheater in Munich as Father) / BLUTHAUS, and as Plato Kusmitsch Kovalev / DIE NASE at Semper Opera Dresden.
Future engagements include Jochanaan/SALOME in Lübek, FLEDERMAUS in Genoa, Jaroslav Prus/VEC MAKORPULOS in Berlin, Father/BLUTHAUS in Lyon, Mandryka/SALOME in Dresden, Dr. Schön/LULU in Vienna and in Florence, Faninal/ROSENKAVALIER in Geneva, LEAR in Madrid, LEBEN MIT EINEM IDIOTEN (Alfred Schnittke) in Zürich; THE DARK SIDE OF THE MOON in Hamburg.
Skovhus also frequently appears on the recital stage and has recorded many recital discs. These include selections of Lieder by Hugo Wolf and Erich Korngold, a selection of songs by Robert and Clara Schumann (The Heart of the Poet), and the two great Schubert song cyclesSchwanengesang andDie schöne Müllerin. After his 1997 New York recital at Alice Tully Hall in Lincoln Center he was acclaimed as one of the great Lieder singers of his generation. He is particularly known for the energy and characterization he brings to the stage.
Bo Skovhus has been awarded the title of “Österreichischer Kammersänger” as well as the title of “Bayerischer Kammersänger”.

Sophie Koch

Sophie Koch studied with Jane Berbié at the
Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris and won the 1st prize of the Dutch International Vocal Competition in Hertogenbosch. Her debut took place in France but it was at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden (Il Barbiere di Sivigliaand Cosi fan tutte) and the Semperoper Dresden (Ariadne auf Naxos) under the Direction of Sir Colin Davis where she had her greatest success. This was followed by Don Giovanni and Orfeoat the Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich.

In Vienna, she made her debut as Cherubino and she was immediately offered Octavian in Der Rosenkavalier, emblematic role of her young career which she sung all over the world. After Munich, Berlin, Milan, Vienna and London, she has appeared at the Paris Opera for the Ringand King Arthur. She regularly appears on the major stages of the world: Toulouse, Brussels, Madrid, Berlin, Zurich, Geneva, the Salzburg Festival and of course London, Dresden, Vienna and Chicago. In 2014, she made her Metropolitan Opera debut in a new production of Werther.

After having imposed her Mozart and her Strauss over the major European stages, Sophie Koch now adds the French and German repertoire. In addition to performing in the complete Ring Cycle at the Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich, her engagements include Venus in Tanhäuserand Mère Marie in Dialogues des Carmélites at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, der Rosenkavalier at the Wiener Staatsoper, and the Salzburg Festival.

Sophie Koch has also given many recitals at the Salzburg; Edinburgh, Aix and Verbier Festivals, at the Brahmssaal/Wiener Musikverein, in Paris, London, Frankfurt, Berlin, Luxembourg, Brussels and Madrid.

She received in 2001 the Christel Goltz’s Prize at the Semperoper Dresden and in 2016 was awarded the title Österreichische Kammersängerin by the Vienna State Opera.

Her first recordings were dedicated to Lieder by Wolf and Schubert and French Melodies (Le Chant du Monde). Then she has recorded Peer Gynt ( Eon), Manonand the world Premiere of Laurent Petitgirard’s opera Elefant Man (EMI). She has also recorded Wellesz’ and Bloch‘s Lieder (Delta/Capriccio), some exerpts of Ariane à Naxos under the direction of Antonio Pappano (Virgin), Mahler’s 8th Symphony under Nagano, a Schumann recital (Myrten) with Nelson Goerner and some Lieder of Strauss with Philippe Entremont (Cascavelle). She recorded French orchestral works: Le Poème de l’amour et de la mer from Chausson, Ravel’s Shéhérazade and Berlioz’s Cantate d’Herminie. A CD (DDG Records) has recently been released of Sophie Koch performing in Wertherat Covent Garden, under the direction of Sir Antonio Pappano.

In DVD, you can see her alongside Renée Fleming in Der Rosenkavalier (Decca) and Ariadne auf Naxos(DGG) live from Baden-Baden Festival and in Wertherwith Jonas Kaufmann (Decca) from the Paris Opera.

Sophie Koch
Errollyn Wallen

Errollyn Wallen

Errollyn Wallen is a multi award-winning Belize-born British composer and performer. Her prolific output includes twenty-two operas and a large catalogue of orchestral, chamber and vocal works which are performed and broadcast throughout the world. She was the first black woman to have a work featured in the Proms. Errollyn composed for the opening ceremony of the Paralympic Games 2012, for the Queen’s Golden and Diamond Jubilees, a specially commissioned song for the climate change conference, COP 26, 2021, and a re-imagining of Jerusalem for BBC’s Last Night of the Proms 2020.
BBC Radio 3 featured her music across the first week of 2022 for its flagship programme, Composer of the Week and she has made several radio documentaries including
Classical Commonwealth, nominated for the Prix Europa, which explored the impact of colonialism on music in the Commonwealth.
Errollyn Wallen founded her own group, Ensemble X whose motto is “we don’t break down barriers in music…we don’t see any”. Their orchestral album PHOTOGRAPHY on the NMC label was voted a Top Ten Classical Album by USA’s National Public Radio. Orchestra X performed Errollyn’s composition Mighty River, which was featured in PRSF’s New Music Biennial 2017 and which is being performed at this year’s PRSF Biennial by National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain at Coventry Cathedral and the Southbank, London.
Errollyn Wallen collaborated with artist Sonia Boyce on her installation, Feeling Her Way, for the British Pavilion at this year’s Venice Biennale which won the Golden Lion prize for Best National Participation.
Errollyn’s albums have travelled 7.84 million kilometres in space, completing 186 orbits around the Earth on NASA’s STS115 mission.
Her critically acclaimed opera, Dido’s Ghost premiered at the Barbican, London, in June 2021 and will receive its US premiere in 2023 in San Francisco by co-commissioners Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra and Chorale.
Recent and forthcoming premieres include a piano concerto composed for pianist Rebeca Ormodia, The World’s Weather, an orchestral work premiered by BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Martyn Brabbins, and new choral works for King’s College Choir, Cambridge, Westminster Abbey, Salisbury Cathedral and Harrow School.
The April premiere and tour of her latest opera (for Graeae Theatre Company), The Paradis Files, coincided with the premiere of Quamino’s Map, for Chicago Opera Theater.
Errollyn was awarded an MBE in 2007 in the Queen’s Birthday Honours and a CBE in 2020 in the New Year Honours, for services to music.
Errollyn lives and composes in a Scottish lighthouse.

Stefan Vladar
Conductor | Pianist

After winning the International Beethoven Piano Competition in 1985 his career as a pianist was predestined. Collaborations with some of the most famous conductors of his time, such as Claudio Abbado, Riccardo Chailly, Christoph von Dohnanyi, Vladimir Fedoseyev, Neville Marriner, Yehudi Menuhin, Seiji Ozawa, Simon Rattle, Christian Thielemann, Sandor Vegh and Jaap van Zweden and orchestras like the Vienna Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony, Concertgebouw Orkest, Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields, Camerata Salzburg, NHK Symphony Orchestra, to name just a few were following.

A recording contract with the major label Sony Classical and invitations to perform at some of the most prestigious festivals such as the Salzburg Festival, the Schleswig-Holstein and Rheingau Festival, Musikfest Bremen, Ravinia Festival Chicago, Mostly Mozart New York, the London Proms, Edinburgh Festival shaped the first years of his career. As a pianist, he performs in the music centers of Europe, America and Asia and gives concerts with the singers Bo Skovhus, Ian Bostridge, Johan Botha, Jonas Kaufmann, Angelika Kirchschlager, Thomas Quasthoff, Ramon Vargas and with soloists such as Tzimon Barto, Isabelle van Keulen, Julian Rachlin.

Soon, however the desire to go beyond the limits of the piano and, in addition to the life as a pianist, a careful development of his conducting activities began.

After his first position as chief conductor in Graz, eleven years followed as music director of the Vienna Chamber Orchestra with which he was extensively touring around the world as well as having two concert series at the Vienna Konzerthaus, also repeatedly conducting from the keyboard in piano concertos.

Stefan Vladar worked as a guest conductor with the Vienna Symphony Orchestra, the Salzburg Mozarteum Orchestra, the Bamberg Symphony Orchestra, the Residentie Orkest Den Haag, the Tchaikovsky Symphony Orchestra, the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra, the Svetlanov Orchestra Moscow, and many others.

From 2019 Stefan Vladar has been general music director and currently also opera director in Lubeck, Germany, where, in addition to numerous symphony concerts, he has already conducted operas such as Mozart's Magic Flute and Le nozze di Figaro, Verdi's La Traviata, Dvorak's Rusalka, Humperdinck's Hansel un Gretel, Montemezzi's L'Amore dei tre re, Wagner's Lohengrin, Strauss' Salome, J. Strauss' Fledermaus, Poulenc's La Voix Humaine, Menotti's The Telephone and Britten's Owen Wingrave.

His work as a pianist and conductor is documented on more than 40 CDs, including recordings as a pianist of Schubert’s Winterreise, Die Schöne Müllerin, and Schwanengesang together with baritone Bo Skovhus on the Capriccio label.

Stefan Vladar has been artistic director of the Neuberger Kulturtage for more than 30 years and professor for piano at the University for Music and Performing Arts in Vienna from 1999. Stefan Vladar was awarded the grand Decoration of Honor in Gold for Services to the Republic of Austria.

Stefan Vladar
Nino Gvetadze

Nino Gvetadze

Born and raised in Tbilisi, Georgian pianist Nino Gvetadze leads an active international music life as a soloist and a chamber musician. Her performances have been praised by many critics throughout the Europe and Asia. Nino received various awards, the most important were the Second Prize, Press Prize and Audience Award at the International Franz Liszt Piano Competition 2008. She became the winner of prestigious Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award in 2010.
Nino Gvetadze has performed with many outstanding conductors such as Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Klaus Mäkelä, Jakub Hrůša and Jaap van Zweden and with orchestras such as the Rotterdam, Brussels, Warsaw, Seoul and Netherlands Philharmonic, Bergische and the Rheinische Philharmonie, Münchner Symphoniker, North Netherlands and Residentie Orchestra amongst others. She toured with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, Kammerakademie Potsdam, Netherlands Youth Orchestra and Amsterdam Sinfonietta.
In 2018-19 Nino was the face of Radio Classic FM Netherlands. The Dutch National TV broadcasted the concert she has performed with the Brodsky Quartet at the famous Prinsengracht Concert. She was featured in BBC4 documentary "Story of Music" and played Live on Dutch National Television on the instruments of Hector Berlioz and Vladimir Horowitz.
In recital as well as in chamber music settings Nino has performed all over the world, among others in Hannover (PRO MUSICA Preisträger am Klavier-Zyklus), Bayreuth, Herkulessaal and Prinzregententheater Munich, with Jean-Yves Thibaudet at the Spoleto Festival, Lucerne Piano Festival, Bunka-kaikan Hall Tokyo, Kuhrhaus Wiesbaden, the Festival Piano aux Jacobins (Toulouse), Kuhmo Chamber Music Festival (Finland), Wigmore Hall London and Tonhalle Zurich.
In the Netherlands Nino is a regular guest at the most prestigious concert venues, among those Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Muziekgebouw Eindhoven, Vredenburg Utrecht.
Nino Gvetadze has recorded 7 solo albums. Her recordings have been praised by international press, including BBC Music Magazine, Gramophone, Independence, Het Parool, NRC and many others. In Tbilisi Nino Gvetadze studied with Veronika Tumanishvili, Nodar Gabunia and Nana Khubutia.
After her graduation Nino moved to the Netherlands to study with Paul Komen and Jan Wijn. Since 2008 she performs in a piano trio together with her colleagues Frederieke Saeijs and Maja Bogdanovic.
Nino Gvetadze is a professor at the Rotterdam Conservatory, The Netherlands Nino plays on a Steinway Grand Piano, kindly lent to her by the Dutch National Music Instrument Foundation.
She is a cofounder and Artistic Director of the Naarden International Piano Festival and Artistic director of the Delft Chamber Music Festival.

Hans Eijsackers

Hans Eijsackers studied with Gérard van Blerk, Jan Wijn and György Sebök. In 1992 he obtained the diploma Performing Musician with Distinction at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam, after which he was invited to study at the European Mozart Academy in Kraków, from which performances followed in Budapest, Southeastern Asia, Cornwall and New York. He was winner of the “Rotterdamse Piano 3-Daagse”, the Princess Christina Competition and the 1991 European Piano Competition in Luxembourg, where he performed Rachmaninov's 2nd Piano Concerto in the final and also won the special prize for song accompaniment. Twice he was awarded the Silver “Vriendenkrans” of the Concertgebouw.

He taught duo class and chamber music at the Royal Conservatoire in The Hague, and solopiano at the HKU in Utrecht, since 2013 he has been appointed Professor for Liedgestaltung at the Robert Schumann Hochschule in Düsseldorf.

Hans Eijsackers performs frequently as a soloist, chamber musician and song accompanist. He has worked with conductors Otto Tausk, Neeme Jervi, Gordan Nicolic and Yannick Nézet-Seguin, among others.

Hans is a frequent guest at the Storioni Festival, the Grachten Festival, the Danube Music Festival, the Festival di Musica Classica di Linari, the International Song Festival Zeist and chamber music festivals in Delft and The Hague.

From 2007 to 2010, he was the artistic director of the "Uitgast Festival", a musical summer open-air event in the Natuurpark in Lelystad. Today, he is artistic director of the International Student LiedDuo Competition in Groningen and, together with Henk Neven, artistic director of the International Lied Festival Zeist.

Since a joint tour in the Rising Stars series in 2001, including recitals in Carnegie Hall, New York and Wigmore Hall, London, he has been performing as a duo with clarinettist Lars Wouters van den Oudenweijer. After a successful CD of Reger's sonatas, their second CD of Brahms' sonatas was also very enthusiastically received by press and media. Other chamber music partners are double bass player Rick Stotijn and bassoonist Bram van Sambeek, with whom he also explores the hardrock repertoire.

Hans Eijsackers is a much sought-after Lied pianist, having performed with Xenia Meijer, Geert Smits, Christianne Stotijn, Peter Gijsbertsen and Henk Neven. Together with Henk Neven, he won the Mees Pierson Prize in May 2008. Their CDs "Auf einer Burg", "The Sea" and "Rêves d' Espagne" were received with acclaim by the press, on their latest CD "With love from Russia" they collaborated with cellist Jan Bastiaan Neven.

As a jury member, he participated in the International Vocal Competition in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, the Student LiedDuo Competition in Groningen, Schubert und die Moderne in Graz and the Princess Christina Competition, invitations for master classes took him to places like Brussels, Graz, Montepulciano, Lithuania and Surabaya, in addition to the Netherlands and Germany.

Hans Eijsackers