Fritz Stüssi (1874 - 1923) attended the Gymnasium in Zurich as well as the Zurich Music School, from which he graduated as a pianist and composer.
He then continued his studies at the Royal Academy of Music in Berlin (counterpoint with Reinhold Succo, composition with Max Bruch).
After his return to Switzerland, Stüssi took over the direction of various choirs in Wädenswil, where he also took up residence in 1898. In 1902 he was elected organist and from then on had a lasting influence on musical events in and around Wädenswil. Stüssi’s oratorio “Vergehen und Auferstehen” was performed in 1914 and the “28th Psalm” in 1921. Between 1898 and 1912, Stüssi also took over the direction of other choirs and orchestras in Uster, Männedorf, Rapperswil, Lachen, Richterswil, Thalwil and Zurich. He was thus a kind of music king around Lake Zurich.
The associated workload took its toll on Stüssi’s health. He died completely unexpectedly on 14 March 1923. Fritz Stüssi left around 130 compositions to posterity, including six orchestral works, two oratorios as well as various cantatas, motets and songs. The handwritten music of his works was kept privately by the composer’s son, Prof. Dr. Fritz Stüssi, until 1979, when it was handed over to the Zurich Central Library by one of the composer’s grandsons, Dr. Hans Kaspar Schulthess, with the agreement of the Stüssi heirs. As the composer’s grandson, Dr Ulrich Stüssi is now making the work known to the public again for the first time in about 100 years.
Florian Helgath has established himself as one of the leading choral conductors of this generation. He has been Artistic Director of ChorWerk Ruhr since 2011 and was appointed Artistic Director of the Zürcher Sing-Akademie in 2017. With these two ensembles he explores choral music from all eras, ranging from a cappella repertoire to the vast choral works of the symphonic genre.
Florian Helgath regularly appears as guest conductor with many leading vocal ensembles and has collaborated with renowned orchestras. He has performed in many major concert halls, and at festivals including the Berliner Festspiele, Schwetzinger Festspiele, Audi Sommerkonzerte, Eclat Festival Neue Musik Stuttgart and Thüringer Bachwochen. He has developed a particular connection with the Ruhrtriennale; his projects for this festival include numerous contemporary music theatre productions.
His discography includes a number of prize-winning recordings: his interpretations have achieved accolades including the ICMA and ECHO Klassik, as well as Grammy nomination. Florian Helgath’s formative musical experiences took place in his native town, where he was a member of the Regensburger Domspatzen; he continued his studies at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater in München. Among his most influential teachers were Michael Gläser, Stefan Parkman, and Dan Olof Stenlund, whose guidance was pivotal in shaping his career as a conductor.
The Zürcher Sing-Akademie is renowned for its versatility and flexibility, performing at the highest level in both chamber and symphonic settings. The Swiss choir collaborates with many eminent orchestras within Switzerland and internationally, and boasts an extensive symphonic repertoire. The ensemble also frequently presents a cappella programmes and plays a prominent part in the promotion of Swiss composers, both historical and contemporary.
Central to its ethos is the continued development of the choral landscape: the Zürcher Sing-Akademie frequently commissions new works and has given many première performances. Florian Helgath has been conductor and artistic director of the Zürcher Sing-Akademie since 2017.
Since its formation in 2011, the choir has collaborated with numerous conductors including Bernard Haitink, David Zinman, Daniel Barenboim, Sir Roger Norrington, Pablo Heras-Casado, Neeme Järvi, Giovanni Antonini, Paavo Järvi, and RenéJacobs.
Concert tours have taken the Zürcher Sing-Akademie to Germany, Italy, Israel, the Netherlands, Lebanon, Taiwan, China, and as well as many European cities. Particular highlights include concerts at the BBC Proms in London, in the Philharmonie de Paris, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Philharmonie Köln, and in the National Concert Hall Taipeh. In addition to its long association with the Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich, the choir regularly performs with acclaimed ensembles such as the Freiburger Barockorchester, Luzerner Sinfonieorchester, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Kammerorchester Basel, Musikkollegium Winterthur, Hofkapelle München, and the baroque orchestra La Scintilla.
Many of the ensembles CD recordings have won acclaim in the form of prestigious awards. The most recent additions to its discography are Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy conducted by Pablo Heras-Casado and Weber’s opera Der Freischütz, both with the Freiburg Baroque Orchestra, for Harmonia Mundi. In autumn 2022, the first a cappella recording of the ensemble was released at the Swiss label Claves Records.
, sopranoIngeborg Danz
, altoFabio Trümpy
, ténorKrešimir Stražanac
, bassJohanna Soller
, organZürcher Sing-AkademieZürcher KammerphilharmonieFlorian Helgath
Formation - Zürcher Sing-Akademie
Alice Borciani, Sonja Bühler, Margret Giglinger, Jenny Högström, Stefanie Knorr, Anne Montandon, Andrea Oberparleiter, Anja Scherg, Gunta Smirnova, Aya Tsujimoto, Ulla Westvik
Franziska Brandenberger, Franziska Gündert, Elisabeth Irvine, Anna Nero, Ursina Patzen, Isabel Pfefferkorn, Jennifer Reineke, Jane Tiik, Sarah Widmer, Anne-Kristin Zschunke
Ulrich Amacher, Florian Feth, Gregory Finch, Christophe Gindraux, Tamás Henter, Matthias Klosinski, Sebastian Lipp, Tiago Oliveira, Eelke van Koot
Ekkehard Abele, Matija Bizjan, Yves Brühwiler, Kevin Gagnon, Fabrice Hayoz, Johannes Hill, Julián Millán, Jan Sauer, Peter Strömberg, Thomas Trolldenier
Formation - Zürcher Kammerphilharmonie
Stefan Tarara (KM), Oleksandra Fedosova, Lalitha Delparente, Melina Murray, Esther Ziegler, Diana- Maria Turcu, Anastasia Subrakova, Jaume Guri Batlle
Mihai Ilea, Andreea Binica, Maria Gloria Mihai, Christian Preotu, Rafayel Ter-Sahakyan, Ljuba Šumilina, Zeno Fusetti, Arianna Vicari
Lukas Kmit, Chiara Ludovisi, Andrii Tsyganov, Coralie Tschanz, Ilona Pohjola, Jordan Sian
Lara Barriga, Rosamund van der Westhuizen, Filip Szkopek, Julie Stier, Ilaria Del Bon, Javier López Escalona
Petya Todorova, Fiona Cairns, Teresa Baur
Aldo Christen, Carlotta Petri
Jordi Bertran Sastre, Catarina Santos Jesus de Castro
Barnabàs Völgyesi, Kie Umehara
Federico Loy, Adrià Sanchez Calonge
Romain Flumet, Clement Guignard, Annette Cox, Shinichiro Ishida
Guillermo Casillas, Daniel Herrero
Phillip Boyle, Andrius Pamorskis, Ian Veronese
Read more and bios in the booklet